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phy609 - Photovoltaic Physics (Complete module description)
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Module label Photovoltaic Physics
Module code phy609
Credit points 6.0 KP
Workload 180 h
Attendance: 56 hrs, Self study: 124 hrs
Institute directory Institute of Physics
Applicability of the module
  • Master's Programme Engineering Physics (Master) > Schwerpunkt: Renewable Energies
  • Sustainable Renewable Energy Technologies (Master) > Mastermodule
Responsible persons
Kühn, Martin (Module responsibility)
Gütay, Levent (Authorized examiners)
Richter, Michael (Authorized examiners)
Solid-state-Pysics, semi-conductor Physics, Module Renewable Energy Technologies I
Skills to be acquired in this module
describe schematically the events around the pn-junction under bias in the dark and under illumination, calculate the width of the space charge region, use solar cell data sheets in their professional career, discuss the concepts of solar cell materials, design and optimization, choose a PV technology for a given project
Module contents
This specialization module covers the physics of photovoltaics. The behaviour of solar cells is discussed from a fundamental physical point of view to explain the differences in performance and limits of various photovoltaic materials. Students learn how solar cells function, are designed and optimized, Optical and electronical properties of semiconductors, light absorption, Charge carrier generation/recombination/life time, Charge carrier transport across the pn-junction in equilibrium and under light and voltage bias, Transport equations, Current-voltage characteristics, efficiency, Quantum efficiency, Design concepts to
optimize the efficiency, Overview of the most important PV technologies
Reader's advisory
S. Hegedus, A. Luque, Handbook of Photovoltaic Science and Engineering, published John Wiley and Sons (2nd Edition 2011);
Christiana Honsberg and Stuart Bowden, PVCDROM,, Access date 2.10.2014;
lecture notes for the respective courses
Language of instruction English
Duration (semesters) 1 Semester
Module frequency Sommersemester
Module capacity unlimited
Modullevel / module level MM (Mastermodul / Master module)
Modulart / typ of module Wahlpflicht / Elective
Lehr-/Lernform / Teaching/Learning method Vorlesung: 4 SWS, Übung: 2 SWS
Vorkenntnisse / Previous knowledge
Course type Comment SWS Frequency Workload of compulsory attendance
2 SuSe or WiSe 28
2 SuSe or WiSe 28
Total time of attendance for the module 56 h
Examination Time of examination Type of examination
Final exam of module
1 Exam