Thursday, January 27, 2011

US Patent 7875884 - Nanostructured hetro-crystalline thin film

Polycrystalline thin film semiconductors may be used to fabricate solar cells and thin film transistors at low cost but introduce increased electron/hole scattering in comparison to single crystal semiconductors. This patent from HP focuses on combining the benefits of single crystalline material with the low cost manufacturing of polycrystalline films by using nanostructured materials. Claim 1 reads:

1. A hetero-crystalline structure comprising:

a first layer of a non-single crystalline material having short range atomic ordering;

a nanostructure of a single crystalline material on the first layer, the nanostructure being integral to a crystallite in the first layer; and

a layer of an insulator material on a surface of the first layer,

the nanostructure being located in an opening through a thickness of the insulator material layer.