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Influence of Crucible Thermal Conductivity on Crystal Growth in an Industrial Directional Solidification Process for Silicon Ingots
We carried out transient global simulations of heating,melting, growing, annealing, and cooling stages for an industrial directional solidification (DS) process for silicon ingots. The crucible thermal conductivity is varied in a reasonable range to investigate its influence on the global heat transfer and silicon crystal growth. It is found that the crucible plays an important role in heat transfer, and therefore its thermal conductivity can influence the crystal growth significantly in the entire DS process. Increasing the crucible thermal conductivity can shorten the time for melting of silicon feed stock and growing of silicon crystal significantly, and therefore large thermal conductivity is helpful in saving both production time and power energy. However, the high temperature gradient in the silicon ingots and the locally concave melt-crystal interface shape for large crucible thermal conductivity indicate that high thermal stress and dislocation propagation are likely to occur during both growing and annealing stages. Based on the numerical simulations, some discussions on designing and choosing the crucible thermal conductivity are presented.
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