Effect of CIGS Layer Thickness and Bandgap on the Efficiency of Thin-Film Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) Solar Cells Using GPVDM

Hassan Abdulsalam, Fatima Musa Lariski


This study explores how CIGS absorber layer thickness and bandgap influenced the efficiency of Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) thin-film solar cells through simulations carried out using the General-Purpose Photovoltaic Device Model (GPVDM). The unique properties of CIGS, including its tunable energy bandgap, are highlighted for optimal alignment with the solar spectrum. Through sets of simulations, optimal values are determined for thickness and bandgap. Results indicate an optimal thickness range (1.2 to 1.3 µm), striking a balance between absorption and recombination losses. Furthermore, an optimal bandgap range (between 1.261 eV and 1.596 eV) was identified, aligning photon absorption and energy losses for maximal efficiency. These findings underscore the nuanced optimization required for effective solar cell design, with implications for the advancement of renewable energy technologies.



CIGS solar cells; Absorber layer thickness; Bandgap; Photovoltaic efficiency; Thin-film technology; GPVDM

Full Text:



SZE, S.M. and M.K. LEE, Semiconductor Devices: Physics and Technology 2012: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Nerat, M., Copper–indium–gallium–selenide (CIGS) solar cells with localized back contacts for achieving high performance. Solar energy materials and solar cells, 2012. 104: p. 152-158.

Ramanujam, J. and U.P. Singh, Copper indium gallium selenide based solar cells–a review. Energy & Environmental Science, 2017. 10(6): p. 1306-1319.

Andreas, B., et al., PHOTOVOLTAICS REPORT-Prepared by Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems, ISE with support of PSE Projects GmbH. 21 February 2023, Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems.

Ramanathan, K., et al., Properties of 19.2% efficiency ZnO/CdS/CuInGaSe2 thin?film solar cells. Progress in Photovoltaics: research and applications, 2003. 11(4): p. 225-230.

Repins, I., et al., 19· 9%?efficient ZnO/CdS/CuInGaSe2 solar cell with 81· 2% fill factor. Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and applications, 2008. 16(3): p. 235-239.

HIZIA, A., The effect of permittivity on CIGS solar cells. 2019.

Kaneshiro, J., et al., Advances in copper-chalcopyrite thin films for solar energy conversion. Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, 2010. 94(1): p. 12-16.

Belghachi, A. and N. Limam, Effect of the absorber layer band-gap on CIGS solar cell. Chinese Journal of Physics, 2017. 55(4): p. 1127-1134.

Morales-Acevedo, A., A simple model of graded band-gap CuInGaSe2 solar cells. Energy Procedia, 2010. 2(1): p. 169-176.

Touafek, N. and R. Mahamadi, Back surface recombination effect on the ultra-thin CIGS solar cells by SCAPS. International Journal of Renewable Energy Research, 2014. 4(4): p. 958-964.

Xu, M., et al., A study on the optics of copper indium gallium (di) selenide (CIGS) solar cells with ultra-thin absorber layers. Optics express, 2014. 22(102): p. A425-A437.

Khoshsirat, N., et al., Analysis of absorber layer properties effect on CIGS solar cell performance using SCAPS. Optik, 2015. 126(7-8): p. 681-686.

Ikegami, T., et al., Estimation of equivalent circuit parameters of PV module and its application to optimal operation of PV system. Solar energy materials and solar cells, 2001. 67(1-4): p. 389-395.

Nelson, J., Imperial College Press. The physics of solar cells, 2003.

Bimenyimana, S., G.N.O. Asemota, and L. Lingling, Output Power Prediction of Photovoltaic Module Using Nonlinear Autoregressive Neural Network. power, 2014. 31: p. 12.

MacKenzie, R.C., Gpvdm manual. 2016.

MacKenzie, R.C., et al., Modeling nongeminate recombination in P3HT: PCBM solar cells. The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2011. 115(19): p. 9806-9813.

Guo, B., et al., Understanding excitonic behavior in light absorption and recombination process. The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2020. 124(47): p. 26076-26082.

Leijtens, T., et al., Carrier trapping and recombination: the role of defect physics in enhancing the open circuit voltage of metal halide perovskite solar cells. Energy & Environmental Science, 2016. 9(11): p. 3472-3481.

Eperon, G.E., M.T. Hörantner, and H.J. Snaith, Metal halide perovskite tandem and multiple-junction photovoltaics. Nature Reviews Chemistry, 2017. 1(12): p. 0095.

SOLAR CELL CENTRAL-P/N Junctions and Band Gaps. 2011 [cited 2023 27/08/2023]; Available from: http://solarcellcentral.com/junction_page.html.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

ISSN: 2394-3688

© Science Front Publishers