School of Engineering and IT

Thin Film PV Devices

Murdoch University has been involved in thin film silicon photovoltaics since 1985. The primary focus on the group during the eighties and nineties was the design of thin film amorphous silicon solar cells with improved efficiency and reduced photodegradation. Drawing on our extensive range of surface analysis facilities the group explored the mechanism of photodegradation in amorphous silicon and published some highly regarded papers about the mechanism and ways to limit photodegradation. This has led to new device designs which are now being developed and tested in our laboratory.

We have the only plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposition system for research work on PV in Australia and this is used to produce advanced thin film devices with amorphous silicon. In recent years we have begun to develop hybrid designs by incorporating microcrystalline and nanocrystalline silicon into the PV devices. We are now looking at ways of incorporating silicon nanowires into thin film devices to improve their efficiency and stability. Also we are looking at low cost transparent conducting window materials for solar cells and optoelectronic devices, based on nanotechnology.

This group has a good set of deposition and characterisation equipment, including facilities for the analysis of faults and defects in solar cells. The group has links to the PV industry including Oyster Energy and Prime Solar.

Staff working on thin film PV devices

Academic Staff:

Professor Philip Jennings
Dr David Parlevliet
Dr Chris Creagh
Dr Sinisa Djordjevic
Dr Zhong-Tao Jiang
Dr Elaine Walker

Adjunct staff

Dr Kaz Luczak

Postgraduate Students

Hanaa Flayeh (PhD student)
Rick Hughes (PhD student)
Dean Lalsett (PhD student)