Abstract

The optical properties of metal nanoparticle (NP)-coated silicon nanowires (Si NWs) are theoretically investigated using COMSOL Multiphysics commercial software. A geometrical array of periodic Si NWs coated with metal NPs is proposed. The simulation demonstrates that light absorption could be enhanced significantly in a long wavelength region of the solar spectrum, based upon the localized surface plasmons generated around metal NPs. Various metal NPs, such as Au, Ag, and Al, are all found to increase their light absorption while in contact with Si NWs, in which the Au NPs show the best result in light enhancement. This theoretical work might prove useful in providing a fundamental understanding toward improving further the efficiency of Si wired solar cells.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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