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Patterning solar cell metal grids on transparent conductive oxides using self-assembled phosphonic acid monolayers
We present a novel, simple and cost-effective method for patterning transparent conductive oxides (TCO) in order to form solar cell's metal grid by electro-plating. Self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) are prepared by dipping substrates in or spraying TCO with perfluorinated and alkylated phosphonic acid solutions. The investigated chemistry and explored deposition parameters on indium tin oxide have resulted in highly hydrophobic surfaces with exceptional coverage of the TCO by the SAMs. The resistance of the deposited layers to acidic plating conditions has been challenging but SAMs at optimized processing conditions have demonstrated masking properties for nickel electroplating.

Authors: Gaëlle A.L. Andreatta, Agata Lachowicz, Nicolas Blondiaux, Christophe Allebé, Antonin Faes

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