Thin-film photovoltaics (TFPVs) are being developed as a lower-cost alternative to silicon-wafer-based products. The three main categories of TFPVs are named after their active-layer components: thin silicon, II-VI (primarily CdTe), and CIGS (copper indium gallium selenide.) Each exists as an active layer on top of a transparent conductive oxide (TCO) on top of a substrate (usually glass or metal.)Application Note Request
Measuring Active Layers
Getting the right thickness and composition of active layers is important. Being too thin can affect efficiency and durability, while being too thick can increase cost. The wrong composition can drastically decrease efficiency and manufacturing yield.
Filmetrics F20 models are used by dozens of TFPV manufacturers to measure the thickness and optical constants of all three types of active layers. To measure active layers on top of TCO, Filmetrics has extensive experience characterizing both in-house and glass-supplier single or multi-layer TCO stacks.
Other Process Films
There are other films, besides active layers and TCO stacks, that are often used in the manufacture of TFPVs. Examples include polyimides and resists used to define cells and electrodes, as well as anti-reflection coatings. In each case Filmetrics has a tabletop, mapping, or in-line solution readily available.To discuss your solar photovoltaic application, contact our thin-film experts. Filmetrics offers free trial measurements - results are typically available in 1-2 days.
Thickness Measurement Example
The ability to measure multiple layers quickly and reliably is critical for the development and manufacturing of thin-film solar cells. In this example, we are measuring both the buffer layer (CdS) and absorber layer (CdTe) on a thin-film PV device. Using our F20-NIR in conjunction with a collimated beam stage, we are able to obtain a reflectance spectrum which allows us to measure the thickness of both CdTe and CdS layers of a CdTe-based solar cell on TEC glass.
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Amorphous & Polysilicon
Measure thickness, crystallinity, and n and k of all forms of amorphous and polycrystalline silicon.
Our F80 Thickness Imaging products are used to measure oxide, STI, and metal CMP processes.
Filmetrics stocks instruments that measure the thousands of dielectric films used throughout industry.
CVD, dielectrics, barrier, PECVD, passivation, insulator, protection, Al2O3, CoO, ZnO, MoO, TiO2, Cr2O3, Nb2O5
Filmetrics systems are used widely in the automotive industry to verify hardcoat and primer thickness.
Acrylic, Automotive industry, Chemical resistance, Clear coating, Decorative coating, Hardcoat, Eyewear, Face shield, Hardcoat, Hardness, Interpenetration Layer, Marring, Ophthalmic lens, Optical quality, Plastic lens, Polycarbonate, Polyester, Siloxane, Primer, Protective film, Scratch resistant, Screen protection, Surface finish, Surface protection, Thermal cure, Top coating, Touch screen, UV coating, UV cure
IC Failure Analysis
The F3-sX is used throughout the chip making industry to measure backside thinning of silicon.
Failure Analysis, FA, Silicon, Si, Integrated circuit, IC, Polishing, Backside failure analysis, Silicon thinning
ITO & Other TCOs
Proprietary analysis algorithms allow one-click measurement of TCO thickness, index, and k.
Indium tin oxide, ITO, tin-doped indium oxide, Transparent conductive oxide, TCO, Display, Front contact, Transparent Electrode, LED, LCD, Solar, Fluorine-doped tin oxide, FTO, TEC, TEC glass, Aluminum zinc oxide, AZO, Aluminum-doped zinc oxide, Zinc oxide, iZO, Indium zinc oxide, IZO, zinc-doped indium oxide
Measure thickness of angioplasty balloons, stent and implant coatings, and many others.
Stents, drug-coated stents, Drug-coating, Balloons, Angioplasty, Parylene, Microfluidic device, Air gap, Catheter, Membranes
Measure thickness, index, and k of metal films up to 50nm thick.
Metallized, Metallization, Foils, Stents, Mirrors, Steel, Stainless Steel, Gold, Nickel, Aluminium, Silver, Cobalt, Zinc, Molybdenum, Titanium, Chrome, Chromium, Niobium, Tungsten, Gallium, Germanium
3-dimensional surface profile measurements to measure microfluidic channels.
microfluidics, lab on a chip, medical, synthesis, biomedical
Measure thickness and index of NPB, AlQ3, PEDOT, P3HT, soluble Teflons, etc…
PLED, AMOLED, Hole Transport (HT), Hole Injection Layer (HIL), Host Materials, anode, cathode, Alq3, NPB, phenylene vinylene, carbazole, thiophene, aniline, styrenesulfonate, phthalocyanine, naphthalene, fluorene, lithium, silver, ITO, calcium
Use the F10-AR to measure reflectance and color, as well as AR and hardcoat layer thicknesses.
eyeglasses, HC, hardcoat, scratch resistant, AR, anti-reflection, reflectance, UV curable, hydrophillic, polycarbonate, high index, CR39, MR-6, MR-7, Trivex
Simply set your parylene-coated sample on the stage of the F3-CS to measure its thickness!
We’ve measured dozens of different resists, and can generate index files for any resist you use.
SU-8, resist, Photoresist, PR, AZ, AZP, ZEP, positive, negative, g-line, i-line, KrF, PMMA, FEP, GRX, KMPR
Measure thickness, porosity, refractive index, and k of your porous silicon films.
Filmetrics offers a full range of products for measuring semiconductor process films.
Refractive Index & k
Measure refractive index and extinction coefficient over wavelengths as wide as 190-1700nm.
n & k, complex, real , imaginary, refractive index, absorption, extinction coefficient, indices, Kramers-Kronig, optical dispersion, dielectric, Lorentz, Cauchy, photoresist, anomalous dispersion, path length
Silicon Wafers & Membranes
We offer tabletop, mapping, and production systems for measuring silicon up to 2mm thick.
Measure CdTe, CdS, CIGS, amorphous-Si, TCOs, anti-reflection (AR) layers, and more...
Copper indium gallium diselenide, CIGS, Cadmium telluride, CdTe, Cad tel,, Amorphous silicon, Amorphous Si, a-Si, Cadmium sulfide, CdS, window layer, buffer layer, Thin-film photovoltaic, Thin-film PV, TFPV, photovoltaics, Solar, Solar cells, Inline, In-situ, Roll-to-roll, R2R, Evaporation, Sputtering, CVD, MOCVD, PECVD, Transparent conductive oxide, TCO, Indium tin oxide, ITO, tin-doped indium oxide
Semiconductor Teaching Labs
More than fifty Filmetrics F20s have been delivered for use in university teaching labs.
Surface Roughness & Finish
3-dimensional surface profile measurements to measure surface roughness.
Filmetrics systems are widely used in the polymer-films community to measure thickness in-line.
Roll to roll, Roll measurements, Roll systems, Rolling substrate, Roll fed, Roll web, Reel to reel , R2R, Web coater, Autoweb, In-line, In-line monitor, Online thickness, Line monitoring system, Precision measuring tools, Automatic, Feeding, Production, Multipoint, High speed