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Materials 2016, 9(1), 33; doi:10.3390/ma9010033

A Critical Evaluation of the Influence of the Dark Exchange Current on the Performance of Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells

1
Departamento de Física Aplicada, Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados del Instituto Politécnico Nacional (CINVESTAV-IPN), Mérida, Yucatán 97310, Mexico
2
Instituto de Física, Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Puebla (BUAP), Puebla, Puebla 72570, Mexico
3
Nanostructured Solar Cells Group, Department of Physical, Chemical and Natural Systems, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Seville ES-41013, Spain
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Federico Bella
Received: 4 November 2015 / Revised: 27 December 2015 / Accepted: 30 December 2015 / Published: 8 January 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrode Materials)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1391 KB, uploaded 8 January 2016]   |  

Abstract

The influence of the thickness of the nanostructured, mesoporous TiO2 film on several parameters determining the performance of a dye-sensitized solar cell is investigated both experimentally and theoretically. We pay special attention to the effect of the exchange current density in the dark, and we compare the values obtained by steady state measurements with values extracted from small perturbation techniques. We also evaluate the influence of exchange current density, the solar cell ideality factor, and the effective absorption coefficient of the cell on the optimal film thickness. The results show that the exchange current density in the dark is proportional to the TiO2 film thickness, however, the effective absorption coefficient is the parameter that ultimately defines the ideal thickness. We illustrate the importance of the exchange current density in the dark on the determination of the current–voltage characteristics and we show how an important improvement of the cell performance can be achieved by decreasing values of the total series resistance and the exchange current density in the dark. View Full-Text
Keywords: dye-sensitized solar cells; continuity equation; dark current; exchange current density; optimal film thickness; super-position principle dye-sensitized solar cells; continuity equation; dark current; exchange current density; optimal film thickness; super-position principle
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

García-Rodríguez, R.; Villanueva-Cab, J.; Anta, J.A.; Oskam, G. A Critical Evaluation of the Influence of the Dark Exchange Current on the Performance of Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells. Materials 2016, 9, 33.

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