Flow Cell Design for Uniform Residence Time Fluid Flow in Micro-Dimension Channels

Summary

 

Technology Description

 

This technology is a deposition reactor and method that allows for the depositing of uniformly thick layers of thin film material. This is due to the uniform residence time of the fluid flowing through the deposition chamber regulated by the architecture of the deposition chamber. The device can control flow variations in the deposition chamber via an inlet for fluid comprising reactants or deposition material in fluid communication with the deposition chamber.

 

Features & Benefits

 

  • Operating under micro-reactor conditions can improve yield and decrease waste solvent production
  • Greatly reduced diffusion times experienced in sub-millimeter length channels
  • Eliminates unwanted precipitates and by-products that settle on the desired film

 

Applications

 

  • Heterojunction PV cells
  • Photoresistors

 

Background of Invention

 

Cadmium sulfide (CdS) is often used to form the core buffer layer component of a heterojunction photovoltaic (PV) cell. One step in production of thin film CdTe and CuInSe2 solar cells is the deposition of CdS as a thin film to serve as a “buffer layer” between the optically absorbent layer and the transparent conductive oxide (TCO) layer to complete an effective p-n junction. The preferred method is chemical bath deposition (CBD) due to its relative ease to implement, low temperature, atmospheric pressures, and low expense for covering large surface area devices. However, the typical CBD process utilizes a large volume of reaction fluid that is not in intimate contact with the substrate surface which provides conditions for spatially uniform film growth rates across substrate area but low yields of cadmium conversion to the final film due to precipitation of CdS in the bulk solution. Researchers at Oregon State University have developed a deposition reactor that compensates for lateral flow variation. With this device comes methods for uniformly depositing material layers, generally as thin films, on substrates.

 

 

Status

 

This technology has been successfully tested in the laboratory and is ready for licensing. Published US Patent Application No. US 13/738,896

 

Patent Information:
Tech ID:
OSU-11-11
Contact:
David Dickson
IP & Licensing Manager
Oregon State University
541-737-3450
david.dickson@oregonstate.edu
Inventors:
Brian Paul
Clayton Hires
Chih-Hung Chang
Keywords:
Advanced Technology and Manufacturing Inst. (ATAMI)
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