Optimization of Cu2ZnSnS4 thin film absorber layer growth without sulphurization using triethanolamine as complexing agent for thin film solar cells applications

  • J. J. Chaudhari
  • U. S. Joshi


Quaternary kesterite Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) thin films have been prepared via a simple spin-coating technique based on a sol–gel precursor of 2-methoxyethanol solution with metal salts and thiourea. Solution processed CZTS thin film growth parameters using complexing agent triethanolamine (TEA) have been investigated. Effects of complexing agent TEA on structural, morphological, optical, electrical and photovoltaic properties of CZTS thin films were systematically investigated. X-ray diffraction and Raman spectroscopy studies reveal that amorphous nature of CZTS thin film changes into polycrystalline with kesterite crystal structure with optimized TEA concentartion. Surface morphology of CZTS films were analyzed by field emission scanning electron microscope and atomic force microscope, which revealed the smooth, uniform, homogeneous and densely packed grains and systematic grain growth formation with varying TEA concentrations. UV–Vis spectra revealed a direct energy band gap ranging from 1.78 to 1.50 eV, which was found to depend upon the TEA concentration. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy demonstrated stoichiometric atomic ratios of multicationic quaternary CZTS thin film grown without sulphurization. p-type conductivity was confirmed using Hall measurements and the effect of varying concentartion of TEA on electrical and photovoltaic properties are studied. The SLG/FTO/ZnO/CZTS/Al thin film solar cell is fabricated with the CZTS absorber layer grown at optimized TAE concentration of 0.06 M. It shows a power conversion efficiency of 0.87% for a 0.16 cm2 area with Voc = 0.257 mV, Jsc = 8.95 mA/cm2 and FF = 38%.



Authors are thankful to Dr. F. Singh, IUAC, New Delhi, India, for providing the Raman spectroscopy measurements.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare there is no conflict of interest.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Physics, School of SciencesGujarat UniversityAhmedabadIndia

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