In this application note, the Nanovea HS1000 (we have shown the newer HS2000 below) is used to measure two different types of solar material (photovoltaic material and glass) and calculate their respective surface roughness, surface features and wafer bow. The shape of trace lines on the photovoltaic material will also be measured. With a maximum stage speed of 1 meter per second, the HS1000, unlike stylus profilometers, can easily handle high production throughput applications, where many measurements are needed in quick fashion.

From the surface roughness parameters, it was observed that, as expected, the glass surface was much smoother than the photovoltaic material surface. As stated previously, glass solar material is as smooth as possible to avoid scattering and absorption of light. The printed trace lines can quickly and easily be measured for height, width, and pitch. All of these measurements are very significant quality control inspections needed to evolve and improve solar cell efficiency and performance.

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