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Enhanced performance of bi-layer Nb2O5 coated TiO2 nanoparticles/nanowires composite photoanode in dye-sensitized solar cells

Photonics and Nanostructures - Fundamentals and Applications
DOI: 10.1016/j.photonics.2014.09.002
  • Charge Recombination
  • Electron Transport
  • Tio2/Nb2O5 Bi-Layer Photoanode
  • Hfo2 Blocking Layer
  • Pce
  • Chemistry


Abstract Dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) were fabricated based on coumarin NKX-2700 dye sensitized bi-layer photoanode and quasi-solid state electrolyte sandwiched together with cobalt sulfide coated counter electrode. A novel bi-layer photoanode has been prepared using composite mixtures of 90wt.% TiO2 nanoparticles+10wt.% TiO2 nanowires (TNPWs) as active layer and Nb2O5 is coated on the active layer, which acts as scattering layer. Hafnium oxide (HfO2) was applied over the TNPWs/Nb2O5 photoanode film, as a blocking layer. TiO2 nanoparticles (TNPs), TiO2 nanowires (TNWs) and TNPWs/Nb2O5 were characterized by X-ray diffractometer (XRD), scanning electron microscope (SEM) and transmission electron microscope (TEM). The sensitizing organic dye coumarin NKX-2700 displayed maximum absorption wavelength (λmax) at 525nm, which could be observed from the UV–vis spectrum. DSSC-1 fabricated with composite bi-layer photoanode revealed enhanced photo-current efficiency (PCE) as compared to other DSSCs and illustrated photovoltaic parameters; short-circuit current JSC=18mA/cm2, open circuit voltage (VOC)=700mV, fill factor (FF)=64% and PCE (η)=8.06%. The electron transport and charge recombination behaviors of DSSCs were investigated by electrochemical impedance spectra (EIS) and the results illustrated that the DSSC-1 showed the lowest charge transport resistance (Rtr) and the longest electron lifetime (τeff). Therefore, in the present investigation, it could be concluded that the novel bi-layer photoanode with blocking layer increased the short circuit current, electron transport and suppressed the recombination of charge carriers at the photoanode/dye/electrolyte interface in DSSC-1.

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