Nanoparticulate hollow TiO 2 fibers as light scatterers in dye-sensitized solar cells: Layer-by-layer self-assembly parameters and mechanism

Rahman, M ; Sharif University of Technology

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  1. Type of Document: Article
  2. DOI: 10.1002/cphc.201000950
  3. Abstract:
  4. Hollow structures show both light scattering and light trapping, which makes them promising for dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) applications. In this work, nanoparticulate hollow TiO 2 fibers are prepared by layer-by-layer (LbL) self-assembly deposition of TiO 2 nanoparticles on natural cellulose fibers as template, followed by thermal removal of the template. The effect of LbL parameters such as the type and molecular weight of polyelectrolyte, number of dip cycles, and the TiO 2 dispersion (amorphous or crystalline sol) are investigated. LbL deposition with weak polyelectrolytes (polyethylenimine, PEI) gives greater nanoparticle deposition yield compared to strong polyelectrolytes (poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride), PDDA). Decreasing the molecular weight of the polyelectrolyte results in more deposition of nanoparticles in each dip cycle with narrower pore size distribution. Fibers prepared by the deposition of crystalline TiO 2 nanoparticles show higher surface area and higher pore volume than amorphous nanoparticles. Scattering coefficients and backscattering properties of fibers are investigated and compared with those of commercial P25 nanoparticles. Composite P25-fiber films are electrophoretically deposited and employed as the photoanode in DSSC. Photoelectrochemical measurements showed an increase of around 50 % in conversion efficiency. By employing the intensity-modulated photovoltage and photocurrent spectroscopy methods, it is shown that the performance improvement due to addition of fibers is mostly due to the increase in light-harvesting efficiency. The high surface area due to the nanoparticulate structure and strong light harvesting due to the hollow structure make these fibers promising scatterers in DSSCs
  5. Keywords:
  6. Layer-by-layer deposition ; Nanostructures ; Self-assembly ; Solar cells ; Thin films
  7. Source: ChemPhysChem ; Volume 12, Issue 5 , 2011 , Pages 966-973 ; 14394235 (ISSN)
  8. URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/cphc.201000950/abstract;jsessionid=F5732606F7D3AF51B3CE876CFADD2097.f03t03