Effects of surface nanostructuring and impurity doping on ultrafast carrier dynamics of silicon photovoltaic cells: A pump-probe study
We present femtosecond optical pump-terahertz probe studies on the ultrafast dynamical processes of photo-generated charge carriers in silicon photovoltaic cells with various nanostructured surfaces and doping densities. The pump-probe measurements provide direct insight on the lifetime of photo-generated carriers, frequency-dependent complex dielectric response along with photoconductivity of silicon photovoltaic cells excited by optical pump pulses. A lifetime of photo-generated carriers of tens of nanosecond is identified from the time-dependent pump-induced attenuation of the terahertz transmission. In addition, we find a large value of the imaginary part of the dielectric function and of the real part of the photoconductivity in silicon photovoltaic cells with micron length nanowires. We attribute these findings to the result of defect-enhanced electron-photon interactions. Moreover, doping densities of phosphorous impurities in silicon photovoltaic cells are also quantified using the Drude-Smith model with our measured frequency-dependent complex photoconductivities.