The importance of having an optimal material for fabricating Optically Transparent Antennas (OTAs) is crucial for designing highly efficient antennas that can be integrated with photovoltaics. Transparent Conductor Oxides (TCOs) are promising for OTA
fabrication due to their capability of being simultaneously transparent at optical frequencies and conductive within the radio frequency (RF) range.
In this work, a new material was developed and optimized to be used for fabricating
an optically transparent antenna on a solar cell. Aluminum and Zinc Oxide were co-sputtered onto Si and onto a polycrystalline photovoltaic cell and then annealed between 350°C and 450°C for 24 and 48 h in N2 ambient. The annealing process ensured the
formation of the Aluminum Zinc Oxide (AZO) with a DC conductivity of 3.48×10Siemense over centimeters and a transparency of 86% for a thickness of 350 and 750 nm.
This new AZO material was shown to be capable of yielding high levels of conductivity at RF frequencies and excellent transmittance at optical frequencies. The material was tested and validated by performing RF characterization, and by fabricating
and testing different optically transparent antennas. The details of the fabrication process, its optimization process, the design of the optical antennas are presented in details and discussed. The material was tested and validated by performing RF characterization, and by fabricating and testing different OTA designs