We present the properties of Cr-doped zinc sulfide (ZnS:Cr) films deposited on Si(100) by pulsed laser deposition. The films are studied for solar cell applications, and to obtain a high absorption, a high Cr content (2.0–5.0 at.%) is used. It is determined by energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy that Cr is relatively uniformly distributed, and that local Cr increases correspond to Zn decreases. The results indicate that most Cr atoms substitute Zn sites. Consistently, electron energy loss and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy showed that the films contain mainly Cr2+ ions. Structural analysis showed that the films are polycrystalline and textured. The films with ~4 % Cr are mainly grown along the hexagonal  direction in wurtzite phase. The average lateral grain size decreases with increasing Cr content, and at a given Cr content, increases with increasing growth temperature.
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This work is done in part within the Norwegian Center for Solar Cell Technology, a Center for Environment-friendly Energy Research co-sponsored by the Norwegian Research Council and Research and Industry in Norway (Project No. 193829). The authors also acknowledge the Research Council of Norway for financial support via the Nano2021 program (Project No. 203503).
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Nematollahi, M., Yang, X., Seim, E. et al. Compositional and structural properties of pulsed laser-deposited ZnS:Cr films. Appl. Phys. A 122, 84 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00339-016-9594-9
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