We demonstrate the optimization of plasmonic thin-film solar cells with broadband absorption enhancements. The solar cells model system consists of a three-dimensional, periodic array of Ag/silica cylinders on a Si film supported by a silica substrate. Particle swarm optimization (PSO) and the finite-difference time domain (FDTD) are combined to achieve the maximum absorption enhancement (Ehm). Through optimization, the optimal system parameters, such as the height and diameter of Ag and the silica cylinder, and the period of periodic array, were obtained. Following this approach, we can attain a 321% enhancement in the integrated quantum efficiency as compared to a cell without metallic structures. The full-band absorption enhancement arises from the near-field enhancement and multiresonant guided modes in the Si waveguide.
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