We report on the acquisition and modeling of the transient response of a commercial silicon (Si) solar cell using a benchtop pulsed X-ray source. The solar-cell transient output to the X-ray pulses was acquired under the dark and steady-state light illumination to mimic the practical operation of a solar cell under different light illumination levels. A solar-cell circuit model was created to develop a fundamental understanding of the transient current/voltage response of solar cell at read-out circuit level. The model was validated by a good agreement between the simulation and experimental results. It was found that the solar-cell resistance ( R ) and capacitance ( C ) depend on the light illumination, and the resulting variation in RC time constant significantly affects the solar-cell transient response. Thus, the solar cell produced different transient signals under different illumination intensities in response to the same X-ray pulse. The experimental data acquired in this work proves the feasibility of using solar panels for prompt detection of nuclear detonations, which also builds a practical mode of X-ray detection using a low-cost self-powered detector.
IEEE Transactions on Nuclear Science
L. Pan et al., "Acquiring and Modeling of Si Solar-Cell Transient Response to Pulsed X-Ray," in IEEE Transactions on Nuclear Science, vol. 68, no. 5, pp. 1152-1160, May 2021, doi: https://doi.org/10.1109/TNS.2021.3067193.
This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0), which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
Please fully attribute the citation below, including DOI in any re-use.