Research & Development
HCDS as a precursor and deposition gas has been successfully demonstrated over the last several decades. HCDS has application in a wide array of fields including electronics and micromachining, renewable energy and energy storage, thermal insulation, and fiber optics. The chemical and physical properties of HCDS have helped to revolutionize CVD applications by enhancing electrical conductivity, lowering temperature requirements, and promoting growth of crystalline structures at the nanoscale.
Much research and development has been conducted with regard to HCDS, and with the ever evolving world of microelectronics, this chemical has a long future ahead of it. However, many of these emerging fields where HCDS would be applicable, such as fuel cells, appear to be overlooking this valuable raw material. These emerging fields could benefit from future HCDS research. As our world gets smaller, and our electronics with it, global technology transfers will expand and it is hoped HCDS expands with it.
Research into thin film technology began in the 1970’s when the electronics industry was searching for new ways to develop cost effective components. Over the past 40 years, energy production attention shifted towards developing higher efficiency, lower cost solar cells. Amorphous thin film solar cells (a-Si) are produced via the Siemens process. Layering is performed via plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). PECVD is differentiated from standard CVD in that deposition rates are higher and a lower temperature at the gas phase can be utilized, reducing the rate of degradation of the substrate. As in standard CVD, HCDS is employed in PECVD to enhance electrical conductivity and mitigate oxidation. The advantages of a-Si are that unlike a rigid crystalline cell, a-Si cells can be fabricated for a variety of flexible applications such as fabric integration in backpacks, shade cloth, and rollouts on rooftops that cannot support weight of traditional panels. Flexible panels also allow for custom configurations or shapes where shading or placement may be an issue for traditional crystalline panels.