A Method for Efficient Transmittance Spectrum Prediction of Transparent Composite Electrodes

Zhao Zhao, A. Dhar, Terry Alford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The interest in indium-free transparent composite electrode (TCE), a thin metal layer embedded between two transparent metal oxide (TMO) layers resulting in TMO/metal/TMO composite structure, has grown recently with the advent of their high figures of merit and its potential application in photovoltaic applications. However, most of the work to date has focused on experimentally producing the best optically transmitting TCE. To better design TCEs and minimize experimental work, it would be useful to develop a model that predicts the optical transmission. In the current work, the transfer-matrix method is employed to calculate the transmittance spectrum of TCE. To validate this approach, the transmittance spectra of TiO2/Au/TiO2 and TiO2/Ag/TiO2 multilayer thin-film TCEs are calculated with use of extracted material parameters. The calculated transmittance spectrum of TiO2/Au/TiO2 matches the measured spectrum quite well. However, the calcualted transmittance of TiO2/Ag/TiO2 is higher than its measured transmittance. The presence of voids in the Ag film is probably responsible for the decreased transmittance of the TiO2/Ag/TiO2 sample, and the continuous Au film in TiO2/Au/TiO2 ensures a good agreement between transmittance prediction and measurement. Our approach is a reliable tool to predict the optical transmittance of TCE with continuous films, and it can efficiently expedite the selection from numerous possible combinations of transparent metal oxides and metals when developing TCEs for future photovoltaic applications. It can also serve as a convenient method to assess the continuity of embedded metal layer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1612-1616
Number of pages5
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • General Engineering


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