COURSE SUMMARY
Course Title: 
Photovoltaics
Course Code: 
15PHY247
Year Taught: 
2015
2016
2017
2018
Type: 
Elective
Degree: 
Undergraduate (UG)
School: 
School of Engineering
Campus: 
Bengaluru
Chennai
Coimbatore
Amritapuri

'Photovoltaics' is a course offered in the B. Tech. programs at School of Engineering, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham.

Unit 1

Introduction to semiconductors: Semiconductors: concept of electron and holes, conduction in semiconductors and concentration of charge carriers in semiconductors. Direct and indirect band gap semiconductors (quantum mechanical treatment). Extrinsic semiconductors: n-type, p-type & compensation doping, carrier concentration; PN junction - concept of bands at PN junction, junction under forward and reverse biases (conceptual).

Unit 2

Optical Processes: Optical absorption, Photoelectric Effect, Beer-Lambert law (Qualitative). Wavelength to band gap relation. Generation of electron-hole pairs. Recombination processes - direct and indirect recombination, other recombination processes - Shockley Reed Hall recombination, Auger recombination.

Solar Cell – Principle: Introduction & history of Solar cells. Constituents of solar radiations (Solar Spectrum). Separation of electrons and holes. Transport of charge carriers - diffusion & drift of carriers, continuity equation, field current, diffusion current, total charge current.

Unit 3

Solar Cell – Properties: Measurement of solar cell parameters - short circuit current, open circuit voltage, fill factor, efficiency. Optical losses, electrical losses, surface recombination velocity, quantum efficiency - external and internal, I-V characteristics of Solar cells. Fabrication and design of Solar cells. Performance enhance: Enhance absorption, Reduce series resistance, surface recombination.

Advanced Solar cell technologies (III Generation): Alternatives to conventional Si based solar cells - Thin film solar cells, Hetero junction solar cells, Tandem solar cells: material properties, fabrication and stability (includes nano scale devices). Organic solar cells.

  • Wenham S R, “Applied Photovoltaics”, 2nd ed., Earthscan Publications Ltd., (2007)
  • Peter Wurfel, “Physics of Solar Cells”, 2nd Ed., Wiley VCH (2005).
  • S O Kasap, “Principles of Electronic Materials and Devices”, McGraw-Hill, New York (2005).