Quantum dot sensitized solar cells with improved efficiency prepared using electrophoretic deposition

Asaf Salant, Menny Shalom, Idan Hod, Adam Faust, Arie Zaban, Uri Banin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

238 Scopus citations

Abstract

Quantum dot sensitized solar cells (QDSSC) may benefit from the ability to tune the quantum dot optical properties and band gap through the manipulation of their size and composition. Moreover, the inorganic nanocrystals may provide increased stability compared to organic sensitizers. We report the facile fabrication of QDSSC by electrophoretic deposition of CdSe QDs onto conducting electrodes coated with mesoporous TiO2. Unlike prior chemical linker-based methods, no pretreatment of the TiO2 was needed, and deposition times as short as 2 h were sufficient for effective coating. Cross-sectional chemical analysis shows that the Cd content is nearly constant across the entire TiO2 layer. The dependence of the deposition on size was studied and successfully applied to CdSe dots with diameters between 2.5 and 5.5 nm as well as larger CdSe quantum rods. The photovoltaic characteristics of the devices are greatly improved compared with those achieved for cells prepared with a linker approach, reaching efficiencies as high as 1.7%, under 1 sun illumination conditions, after treating the coated electrodes with ZnS. Notably, the absorbed photon to electron conversion efficiencies did not show a clear size-dependence indicating efficient electron injection even for the larger QD sizes. The electrophoretic deposition method can be easily expanded and applied for preparations of QDSSCs using diverse colloidal quantum dot and quantum rod materials for sensitization.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)5962-5968
Number of pages7
JournalACS Nano
Volume4
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - 26 Oct 2010

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgement. This study was supported by a grant from the Office of the Chief Scientist, Israel Ministry of Health.

Keywords

  • electrophoretic deposition
  • quantum dot sensitized solar cell
  • quantum dots
  • size effects
  • solar cells

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