The microwave annealing of semiconductor devices has not been extensively researched and is rarely utilized in industry, yet it has the potential to significantly reduce the time and cost associated with large-volume semiconductor processing, such as the various heating and annealing processes required in the manufacture of photovoltaic modules. In this paper, we describe microwave annealing of silicon solar cells, the effective passivation of light-induced defects, and a reduction in light-induced degradation. We find that silicon solar cells are heated rapidly in a microwave field and that effective B–O defect passivation can be achieved by microwave processing in less than 2 s. Microwave annealing yields similar results as compared to rapid thermal annealing.

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