Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Zn-Se-Cd-S interlayer formation at the CdS/Cu2ZnSnSe4 thin-film solar cell interface



Marcus Baer, Ingrid Repins, Lothar Weinhardt, Jan Alsmeier, Sujitra J. Pookpanratana, Monika Blum, Wanli Yang, Clemens Heske, Regan Wilks, Rommel Noufi


The chemical structure of the CdS/Cu2ZnSnSe4 (CZTSe) interface was studied by a combination of different surface-sensitive and near-surface bulk-sensitive electron and x-ray spectroscopies. We find a CdS deposition-induced “redistribution” of elements in the proximity of the CdS/CZTSe interface during interface formation in the chemical bath. In detail, Zn and Se from the CZTSe absorber and Cd and S from the buffer layer seem to form a Zn-Se-Cd-S – containing interlayer. As we do not find any evidence for the formation of S-Zn bonds, but indications for the presence of Cd-S,Se and Cd-Se-Zn bonds at the buffer/absorber interface, we propose the formation of a mixed Cd(S,Se) – (Cd,Zn)Se interlayer. As potential underlying chemical mechanism we suggest an ion exchange mediated by the amine complexes present in the chemical bath.
ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces


kesterites, photovoltaics, X-ray spectroscopy, XPS


Baer, M. , Repins, I. , , L. , Alsmeier, J. , Pookpanratana, S. , Blum, M. , Yang, W. , Heske, C. , Wilks, R. and Noufi, R. (2017), Zn-Se-Cd-S interlayer formation at the CdS/Cu2ZnSnSe4 thin-film solar cell interface, ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, [online], (Accessed September 17, 2021)
Created June 14, 2017, Updated November 10, 2018