Use of Laser Beam Diffraction for Non-invasive Characterisation of CdTe Thin Film Growth Structure

Research Area:
Eco-Intelligent Manufacturing


Procedia CIRP

SMART Authors:
Elliot Woolley , Alessandro Simeone , Nick Goffin

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Characterisation of Cadmium Telluride (CdTe) thin films commonly requires the use of invasive techniques for
the identification of their structural growth and the detection of defects which occur during the deposition process.
Structural growth and the presence of defects can affect the performance of the final device. A non-invasive
inspection system for CdTe films has been developed to identify the structural properties of this material,
comparing two different deposition techniques, Close Space Sublimation (CSS) and Magnetron Sputtering (MS).
The proposed system utilises a 1 μm diode laser which passes through the CdTe layer, originating detectable
diffraction patterns, which are characterised using image processing techniques and assessed using a neural
network-based cognitive decision-making support system. Results are found to be consistent with the conventional
microscopic techniques (SEM and TEM) used to analyse morphological and structural properties of thin-film CdTe
solar cells.

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