Industries

Aerospace & Defense

EAG is your R&D partner, working with aerospace and defense manufacturers and suppliers to create faster, safer and more reliable aircraft and components. We use the most advanced…

EAG is your R&D partner, working with aerospace and defense manufacturers and suppliers to create faster, safer and more reliable aircraft and components. We use the most advanced analytical methodologies to answer complex engineering, materials and manufacturing problems, from evaluating the purity of new materials to confirming the characteristics of ceramic matrix composites. For research, development and production, we work alongside your technical staff to formulate and troubleshoot the next generation of aerospace and defense materials.

Chemicals & Basic Materials

For over 50 years, EAG’s scientists have applied advanced analytical techniques to solve tough problems and support R&D activities for manufacturers and users of a wide variety…

For over 50 years, EAG’s scientists have applied advanced analytical techniques to solve tough problems and support R&D activities for manufacturers and users of a wide variety of chemicals and materials. EAG offers reliable analytical results, development support for novel products, and answers to complex problems for manufacturers of chemicals used in metals, fibers, plastics, coatings, adhesives, construction materials, textiles, lubricants and more.

Consumer Products

Consumer products manufacturers and partners turn to EAG to answer R&D questions, ensure supply chain quality, respond to regulatory requirements and ensure well-supported legal…

Consumer products manufacturers and partners turn to EAG to answer R&D questions, ensure supply chain quality, respond to regulatory requirements and ensure well-supported legal arguments. EAG scientists have helped all types of consumer products companies accelerate innovation, resolve manufacturing concerns and comply with evolving regulations.

Food & Agriculture

Drive R&D productivity and keep pace with evolving environmental regulations. From agrochemical development to evaluating innovative packaging solutions, EAG scientists support…

Drive R&D productivity and keep pace with evolving environmental regulations.

From agrochemical development to evaluating innovative packaging solutions, EAG scientists support the agriculture/food s industry with scientific expertise required to enhance shelf life, ensure product safety and understand environmental impact. Whether in need of food quality investigations or help supporting regulatory filing of new chemicals, ask EAG. WE KNOW HOW.

Law

When a business’s brand and reputation is at stake, clients turn to EAG’s litigation support services for dependable scientific answers. Since 1959, our scientific expertise,…

When a business’s brand and reputation is at stake, clients turn to EAG’s litigation support services for dependable scientific answers. Since 1959, our scientific expertise, testing and testimony have supported legal strategies for intellectual property, product liability and insurance cases. Our scientists offer expertise in technology, life sciences, electronics, industrial and consumer products, having tested a broad array of materials for legal challenges. We understand the unique needs of legal projects – speed, effective communication, reliability and confidentiality.

Medical Device & Diagnostics

From initial concept and prototypes to verification/validation, submission and launch, EAG Laboratories is your partner in medical device development. From implant…

From initial concept and prototypes to verification/validation, submission and launch, EAG Laboratories is your partner in medical device development. From implant biocompatibility studies to surface chemistry for contact lenses, we have the experience and techniques to characterize, test and assure purity of medical devices and their materials, components, products and packaging. By utilizing our unique expertise in materials sciences, chemistry, electronics and regulatory support, EAG empowers device companies to create new ways to heal and improve patient quality of life.

Pharmaceuticals

Overcome R&D roadblocks with technical and regulatory know-how. For over two decades, EAG scientists have helped solve complex issues for the pharmaceutical Industry. Using…

Overcome R&D roadblocks with technical and regulatory know-how. For over two decades, EAG scientists have helped solve complex issues for the pharmaceutical Industry. Using multidisciplinary science and engineering, we help improve product development efficiency, avoid regulatory setbacks and uncover sources of problematic manufacturing issues. From GLP and cGMP studies to contaminant and packaging investigations, the scientists of EAG support every phase of the product lifecycle.

Technology

For the high-tech industry, EAG is the leader in materials characterization, surface analysis, microscopy and electronics testing. Our scientists and engineers troubleshoot and…

For the high-tech industry, EAG is the leader in materials characterization, surface analysis, microscopy and electronics testing. Our scientists and engineers troubleshoot and solve issues with consumer electronics, chip packages, printed circuit boards, displays, sensors, high-speed communications and more. We meet the demanding needs of technology innovation, enabling our clients to have confidence in their research & development, supply chains, and ultimately their manufacturing processes

Services

Materials Testing & Analysis

When it comes to understanding the physical structure, chemical properties and composition of materials, no scientific services company offers the breadth of experience, diversity…

When it comes to understanding the physical structure, chemical properties and composition of materials, no scientific services company offers the breadth of experience, diversity of analytical techniques or technical ingenuity of EAG. From polymers to composites, thin films to superalloys—we know how to leverage materials sciences to gain a competitive edge. At EAG, we don’t just perform testing, we drive commercial success—through thoughtfully designed investigations, technically superior analyses and expert interpretation of data.

Microelectronics Test & Engineering

Whether connecting the internet of things, guiding surgical lasers or powering the latest smart phone, integrated circuits and microelectronics touch nearly every aspect of human…

Whether connecting the internet of things, guiding surgical lasers or powering the latest smart phone, integrated circuits and microelectronics touch nearly every aspect of human life. In the world of technology, innovation and continuous improvement are imperatives—and being able to quickly and reliably test, debug, diagnose failures and take corrective action can make the difference between a doomed product launch and building a successful global brand. EAG offers you the world’s largest and most diverse collection of specialized analytical instrumentation, capacity to perform a variety of microelectronic tests in parallel, and the multi-disciplinary expertise required to draw true insight from data.

Litigation Support & Expert Testimony

When you need solid science and investigative engineering to address product failures, inform legal strategy, protect intellectual property or address product liability disputes,…

When you need solid science and investigative engineering to address product failures, inform legal strategy, protect intellectual property or address product liability disputes, turn to EAG. We’ve provided technical consulting, analysis and expert testimony for hundreds of cases involving the aerospace, transportation, medical device, electronics, industrial and consumer product industries. Our team of experts understands the legal process and your need for responsiveness, effective communication, scientifically defensible opinion and confidentiality. From professional consulting to data review to trial preparation and expert witness testimony, ask EAG.

Pharmaceutical & Biopharmaceutical Development Services

EAG Laboratories’ pharmaceutical development services group is now part of Eurofins Biopharma Product Testing. Eurofins BioPharma Product Testing offers…

EAG Laboratories’ pharmaceutical development services group is now part of Eurofins Biopharma Product Testing.

Eurofins BioPharma Product Testing offers unprecedented, multi-location capacity and unmatched expertise through the largest harmonized network of bio/pharma product testing laboratories worldwide. From performing IND-enabling studies to full CMC analytical and QC support, we join your R&D team as a true partner, providing expert guidance to balance regulatory expectations with expediency and cost, and approach technical challenges with flexibility and resolve.

Environmental Testing & Regulatory Compliance

Having helped develop the test methods that shape current regulatory guidelines, EAG chemists, biologists and toxicologists have evaluated the environmental impact of thousands of…

Having helped develop the test methods that shape current regulatory guidelines, EAG chemists, biologists and toxicologists have evaluated the environmental impact of thousands of active ingredients and formulations—from pesticides and pharmaceuticals to industrial chemicals and consumer products. Whether you are exploring “what if” scenarios, registering a new active ingredient or formulation, responding to a data call-in or seeking to understand the latest guidance, turn to EAG for technical excellence, sound advice, GLP-compliant study execution and expert interpretation.

Crop Biotechnology & Development

EAG combines biotechnology and protein characterization expertise with more than 50 years' experience analyzing chemical compounds in plant and environmental matrices to address…

EAG combines biotechnology and protein characterization expertise with more than 50 years’ experience analyzing chemical compounds in plant and environmental matrices to address the growing needs of the biotechnology crop industry. We offer a wide range of techniques required to fully characterize the event insertion and expressed proteins, as well as the various studies required to confirm the food, feed and environmental safety of products that represent the trait. From early-stage protein confirmation to GLP-compliant EDSP and allergenicity testing, we help you make faster, more informed development decisions and comply with evolving global regulations of genetically engineered crops.

Custom Synthesis & Radiolabeling

No contract service provider has more experience performing custom synthesis and producing isotopically labeled compounds to support product development in life science, chemical…

No contract service provider has more experience performing custom synthesis and producing isotopically labeled compounds to support product development in life science, chemical and related industries than we do. From 14C and 3H radiolabeled clinical trial materials synthesized under cGMP, to stable-labeled active ingredients for metabolism and environmental fate/effects testing, turn to EAG. We have extensive experience with multi-step and other complex synthesis projects, and our comprehensive, in-house analytical services ensure quick turnaround of purity and structural confirmation.

Techniques

Chromatography

Using an array of advanced separation techniques and innovative technology, we conduct highly precise analytical chromatography for various industries. Whether you want a closer…

Using an array of advanced separation techniques and innovative technology, we conduct highly precise analytical chromatography for various industries. Whether you want a closer look at the purity of your pharmaceutical or need to better understand an agrochemical’s components, EAG has the expertise to separate and evaluate any compound.

Mass Spectrometry

Need to evaluate the molecular structure of a compound or identify its origins? EAG knows how. With state-of-the-art tools, we can separate, vaporize and ionize the atoms and…

Need to evaluate the molecular structure of a compound or identify its origins? EAG knows how. With state-of-the-art tools, we can separate, vaporize and ionize the atoms and molecules in almost any pure or complex material to detect and obtain mass spectra of the components. We rely on decades of experience in mass spectrometry to provide our clients with precise analyses and the best detection limits.

Imaging

EAG is a world leader in high-resolution imaging down to the atomic level. We offer unmatched analytical know-how, generating extremely detailed surface and near surface images…

EAG is a world leader in high-resolution imaging down to the atomic level. We offer unmatched analytical know-how, generating extremely detailed surface and near surface images for various industries, from consumer electronics to nanotechnology. Using state-of-the-art equipment and innovative techniques, we conduct expert imaging to aid in failure analysis, dimensional analysis, process characterization, particle identification and more. If you want to investigate a material with angstrom scale resolution, you can count on EAG to get the job done quickly and precisely.

Spectroscopy

EAG offers a vast array of spectroscopic techniques to clients in various industries, from defense contractors to technology pioneers. We combine unparalleled expertise and…

EAG offers a vast array of spectroscopic techniques to clients in various industries, from defense contractors to technology pioneers. We combine unparalleled expertise and methodology with cutting-edge technology to analyze your organic, inorganic, metallic and composite materials for identification, compositional, structural and contaminant information. Whether you need expert spectroscopic analysis to improve your production process or to surmount a technical challenge, EAG is up to the task.

Physical/Chemical Characterization

Need to identify your unique material? Want to analyze the thermal properties of a sample, or measure the success of a process step? If it has to be done quickly and it has to be…

Need to identify your unique material? Want to analyze the thermal properties of a sample, or measure the success of a process step? If it has to be done quickly and it has to be done right, you can count on EAG. We offer a range of adaptable techniques and innovative methods to evaluate the physical and chemical characteristics of any compound. Our highly precise testing and analytical services will improve your production process, expedite R&D and help you conquer any technical challenge.

About

A Global Scientific Services Company

One of the most respected names in contract research and testing, EAG Laboratories is a global scientific services company operating at the intersection of science, technology and…

One of the most respected names in contract research and testing, EAG Laboratories is a global scientific services company operating at the intersection of science, technology and business. The scientists and engineers of EAG apply multi-disciplinary expertise, advanced analytical techniques and “we know how” resolve to answer complex questions that drive commerce around the world.

Our Customers

Science and technology transcend industry boundaries, and so does demand for EAG’s expertise. We partner with companies across a broad spectrum of high-tech, high-impact and…

Science and technology transcend industry boundaries, and so does demand for EAG’s expertise. We partner with companies across a broad spectrum of high-tech, high-impact and highly regulated industries. We help our customers innovate new and improved products, investigate manufacturing problems, perform advanced analyses to determine safety, efficacy and regulatory compliance, and protect their brands.

Our Company Culture

EAG’s corporate culture is firmly rooted in four guiding principles: “foster a growth mindset,” “find a better way,” “earn more loyal customers,” and “win…

EAG’s corporate culture is firmly rooted in four guiding principles: “foster a growth mindset,” “find a better way,” “earn more loyal customers,” and “win together.” Across all of our 20+ locations, you will find a true passion for science and the power of science to improve the world we live in. Hear what some of our ~1200 scientists, engineers and support personnel say about what it means to be part of EAG Laboratories.

Careers

EAG is growing, and we are always looking for talented, problem-solving oriented individuals to join our company. If you have a “we know how” spirit, we want to hear from you.…

EAG is growing, and we are always looking for talented, problem-solving oriented individuals to join our company. If you have a “we know how” spirit, we want to hear from you. Browse current openings now, and re-visit our careers page often.

CIGS Thin Film PV – Application Discussion

APPLICATION NOTE

Cu(In,Ga)Se2 (CIGS) thin film PV is a thin film PV technology in its early stage of large scale commercialization. CIGS has the advantage of a high cell efficiency (approaching 20%) and module efficiency (~13%), a direct bandgap, a high absorption coefficient, and processes that can work for low cost, large scale manufacturing, including roll-to-roll substrates of polymer or stainless steel. The electronic properties of the cell are very tolerant to compositional variance of the Cu content. The CuInSe2 can be alloyed with Ga (common), Al and S to engineer the bandgap over a wide range for improved performance.

The main area for improvement of CIGS thin film PV is performance reliability and uniformity as manufacturing is scaled up.

Materials characterization using surface analysis methods can be used to support analysis of performance and R&D of efficiency improvements.

The schematic of the CIGS Thin Film PV device structure shown above illustrates some of the ways surface analysis can help.
The schematic of the CIGS Thin Film PV device structure shown above illustrates some of the ways surface analysis can help.

On the left side of the schematic we see the layered structure. The substrate in this case is soda lime glass, a source of needed Na in the device, but alternative substrates such as stainless steel foil or polyimide sheet are also used in which case an alternate method for adding Na is needed. In the schematic a metal (Mo in this case) is deposited on the glass substrate with thickness on the order of 0.5 µm. The CIGS layer is deposited next with thickness on the order of 2 µm and a thin (~50 nm) CdS layer is deposited on the surface of the CIGS. Alternatives to CdS include CdZnS, Zn(S, O, OH), ZnSe, ZnIn2Se4, In2S3, and ZnMgO.

Finally a Transparent Conductive Oxide (TCO) such as ZnO/ZnO:Al or ZnO/ITO of thickness 0.2 µm to 0.5 µm is deposited. The light enters from the TCO side, and is absorbed in the CIGS layer where electron-hole pairs are formed. The p/n junction at the CdS/CIGS heterojunction, or a homojunction formed by a Cd-doped surface region of the CIGS at the CdS interface, creates a depletion region which separates the electron and holes and allows them to be collected, thus generating the solar cell current. Two of the key steps in the CIGS solar cell design and fabrication are the process to introduce a controlled profile of the Ga in the CIGS layer and the process to introduce ~0.1% Na into the device. The CIGS layer must be Cu-deficient, and stability of the cell is attributed to a stable formation of a defect pair which is electrically inactive. Each of the layers is multi-crystalline.

On the right side of the schematic are shown some examples of materials analysis. Starting at the bottom, or the beginning of the cell formation, we have the metal layer on the glass substrate. This metal layer is most commonly sputtered Mo which has a target resistivity and allows Na to diffuse from the glass substrate to the upper layers of CdS and CIGS. The thickness and micro-structure of the Mo film is critical to both resistivity and the ability to allow the Na to diffuse. Thickness can be measured by XRR. Microstructure can be characterized by XRD (phase ID), SEM, and AFM. Porosity can be characterized by TEM. Oxygen in the Mo film can affect the properties and this can be determined by XPS and RBS. SIMS can be used to profile the Na through the Mo into the upper layers. If the glass substrate is replaced by a metal foil such as stainless steel, defects in the foil can be characterized by AFM and Auger.

The CIGS layer deposited on the metal contact can be characterized by many techniques. Cross section SEM gives the grain and void morphology. TEM gives information on defects, including nanodomains. STEM/EDS provides information on fluctuations of the ratio of alloy components. SIMS gives the profile of the major constituents (Cu, In, Ga, Se) as well as impurities such as O and C contaminants and the desired Na. Auger can also profile the major constituents. XRD and GIXRD give CIGS phase ID, and XPS provides surface stoichiometry variance before the CdS layer is deposited.

Thickness and composition of the CdS layer can be obtained by XRR and RBS. The TCO layer composition and thickness can be determined by XRR and RBS while XRD can provide phase degradation under accelerated environmental aging tests.

In addition organic contamination that may enter the process at any step, including the module formation, can be determined by FTIR, GCMS, XPS, Raman, or TOF-SIMS.

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