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Carrier extraction behaviour in type II GaSb/GaAs quantum ring solar cells

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Article number035014
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>03/2014
<mark>Journal</mark>Semiconductor Science and Technology
Issue number3
Number of pages5
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The introduction of quantum dot (QD) or quantum ring (QR) nanostructures into GaAs single-junction solar cells has shown enhanced photo-response above the GaAs absorption edge, because of sub-bandgap photon absorption. However, to further improve solar cell performance a better understanding of the mechanisms of photogenerated carrier extraction from QDs and QRs is needed. In this work we have used a direct excitation technique to study type II GaSb/GaAs quantum ring solar cells using a 1064 nm infrared laser, which enables us to excite electron-hole pairs directly within the GaSb QRs without exciting the GaAs host material. Temperature and laser intensity dependence of the current-voltage characteristics revealed that the thermionic emission process produced the dominant contribution to the photocurrent and accounts for 98.9% of total photocurrent at 0 V and 300 K. Although the tunnelling process gives only a low contribution to the photocurrent, an enhancement of the tunnelling current was clearly observed when an external electric field was applied.