The design and development of the next-generation power-efficient CIGS solar cells are at the research forefront due to their potential applications in renewable energy. Due to rich fundamental properties such as chemical and physical structures of the CIGS layer, cell scaffolding, and its promising applications like low cost, easy integration, and high efficiency, the CIGS-based solar cell systems are of considerable interest and received tremendous attention. In this article, we review the CIGS solar cells from the point of view of structural engineering. We explain the intrinsic parts of crystalline, optical, and electronic structures of the CIGS absorber layer up to the extrinsic part of the cell multilayer structure. For intrinsic structure, we primarily review the modification of the crystallinity or chemical composition of the CIGS and the effects that these modifications have on the physical properties such as the adjustment of the bandgap grading, effect of impurity or doping, selenization, oxidation processes, and the surface morphology and structure orientation. For extrinsic structure, the effect of substrates, electrical back contact, windows, n-buffer, grid, and antireflection layers will be discussed further, as well as the possibility of their tandem use with other solar cell thin films.
- Solar cell
- Structural engineering