Low energy ion scattering: Surface preparation and analysis of Cu(In,Ga)Se2 for photovoltaic applications

Helena Téllez, John Druce, Allen Hall, Tatsumi Ishihara, John Kilner, Angus Rockett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) single-crystal epitaxial films have been analyzed by low energy ion scattering, which is sensitive to exactly the outermost surface atomic layer, to determine the surface chemistry as a function of preparation conditions. The samples were grown by a hybrid sputtering and evaporation method on cation (A) or anion (B) terminated (111) GaAs substrates and had smooth surfaces. The samples were exposed to excited atomic oxygen or hydrogen beams or were sputtered with 500 eV Ar+ ions. Atomic O∗ treatment resulted in an otherwise clean, oxidized surface including all film constituents. Atomic H∗ resulted in strong enhancement of the surface Ga population, probably due to a preexisting Ga native oxide in the outermost atomic layer. Sputtering produced a clean surface that was closest to the bulk composition of the film as measured by energy-dispersive spectroscopy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1219-1227
Number of pages9
JournalProgress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015


  • chalcopyrites
  • epitaxial films
  • low energy ion scattering
  • surface chemistry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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