Allen J. Hall

Materials Science & Engineering, Productivity, and Life

CI(G)S Photovoltaics

My New Nanostructured CI(G)S Light-Absorbing Thin Films Published in JAP

pillars For a while now I’ve been dying to share some of the new nanostructures I’ve discovered during ion-assisted vapor deposition of CI(G)S thin films. My paper was published in the Journal of Applied Physics last fall (sorry for the blog outage over the winter-break).  The paper is titled: “Nanostructured light-absorbing crystalline CuIn(1–x)GaxSe2 thin films grown through high flux, low energy ion irradiation;”  There are a lot of unanswered questions about the work that leaves me dreaming up different solutions to how these films are growing. Read More »

AVS-Boston next week!

The society formerly known as the American Vacuum Society (AVS) is holding their international conference in Boston, MA next week! And I’ll be there! [Exciting!] If you are going to be there, drop me a line on the blog and we can snag a coffee or beer together.

The programs and cards sent out may have a familiar image! :)

My AFM image of the CuInSe2 Bicrystals I grow in our lab won second place in the Art-Zone competition last year! It was great fun! [Thanks goes to AVS for being a fantastic organization!]

AVS ArtZone Second Prize Winner- CuInSe2 Bicrystal

Wish me luck with my talk!! :)

Published in the Journal of Applied Physics…

Well, I’m finally published in my current field.  It took a very very long time to get this paper published.  All sorts of reasons for the delay.  In fact, this work was originally started in 2004  (our first bicrystal was successfully grown in ’04).  During research group meeting, I made an under the breath comment something akin to: “Well, darnit, it’s too bad we can’t study a single grain-boundary, because then everything would be so much easier…”  Prof. Rockett looked over to me and smiled: “But, Allen, we can study a single grain-boundary!  That’s a great idea!”  So, the bicrystal project was started.

We were able to obtain a bicrystal GaAs wafer from Wafer Technology Limited Co. (UK); I requested a bad growth, with crystallites as large as possible.  I’ll be forever indebted to the great guys at Wafer Technology for their quick grasp of what I was looking for.  After visiting our group in 2006, S. Seibentritt at HMI (now at Lüxenbourg) started similar work.

While this current paper isn’t perfect, it went through numerous revisions.  Most of the extensive EBSD calculations didn’t make the paper.  Subsequent papers will likely revisit the disorientation discussion.

Epitaxial growth of very large grain bicrystalline Cu(In,Ga)Se2 thin films by a hybrid sputtering method
J. Appl. Phys. 103, 083540 (7 pages) (2008)

Unfortunately, there was an error we missed in the proof.  The paper is currently missing Figure 2(c): The cross-sectional HRTEM image (the hard work of C. Lei).  The image can be found here: Cross-Sectional HREM image of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 bicrystal, hosted at Prof. Angus Rockett’s research group’s webpage.

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A Quick Introduction...

I'm a graduate student (PhD Candidate) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

I've studied and researched in two fields of Materials Science and Engineering (Polymers and Semiconductors). My interests are as diverse as my musical tastes and I usually have my hand in some crazy project during my free time.

I'm available for consulting and have access to a world-renown materials research user-facility supported by the D.O.E. If you would like to know more, please contact me.

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