The reflectance, transmittance and absorptance of GaAs nanowire (NW) arrays are calculated by solving Maxwell’s equations using the finite element method. The model is compared with measurement results from well-ordered periodic GaAs NW arrays fabricated by dry etching. The model results are also compared with the reflectance measured from NWs grown by the Au-assisted vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) method. The optimum NW diameter, periodicity (spacing between NWs) and length are determined to maximize absorptance of the AM1.5G solar spectrum and short circuit current density in a NW array solar cell. The geometry structure of GaAs-Si two junction solar cell is also determined.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

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