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Nanomaterials 2018, 8(7), 460; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8070460

Interface Passivation Effects on the Photovoltaic Performance of Quantum Dot Sensitized Inverse Opal TiO2 Solar Cells

1
Department of Engineering Science, The University of Electro Communications, 1-5-1 Chofugaoka, Chofu, Tokyo 182-8585, Japan
2
Department of Physics, King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang, 1 Soi Chalongkrung 1, Ladkrabang, Bangkok 10520, Thailand
3
Beijing Engineering Research Centre of Sustainable Energy and Buildings, Beijing University of Civil Engineering and Architecture, Beijing 102616, China
4
Graduate school of Life Science and Systems Engineering, Kyushu Institute of Technology, 2-4 Hibikino, Wakamatsu-ku, Kitakyushu, Fukuoka 808-0196, Japan
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 May 2018 / Revised: 19 June 2018 / Accepted: 23 June 2018 / Published: 25 June 2018
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Abstract

Quantum dot (QD)-sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs) are expected to achieve higher energy conversion efficiency than traditional single-junction silicon solar cells due to the unique properties of QDs. An inverse opal (IO)-TiO2 (IO-TiO2) electrode is useful for QDSSCs because of its three-dimensional (3D) periodic nanostructures and better electrolyte penetration compared to the normal nanoparticles (NPs)-TiO2 (NPs-TiO2) electrode. We find that the open-circuit voltages Voc of the QDSSCs with IO-TiO2 electrodes are higher than those of QDSSCs with NPs-TiO2 electrodes. One important strategy for enhancing photovoltaic conversion efficiency of QDSSCs with IO-TiO2 electrodes is surface passivation of photoanodes using wide-bandgap semiconducting materials. In this study, we have proposed surface passivation on IO-TiO2 with ZnS coating before QD deposition. The efficiency of QDSSCs with IO-TiO2 electrodes is largely improved (from 0.74% to 1.33%) because of the enhancements of Voc (from 0.65 V to 0.74 V) and fill factor (FF) (from 0.37 to 0.63). This result indicates that ZnS passivation can reduce the interfacial recombination at the IO-TiO2/QDs and IO-TiO2/electrolyte interfaces, for which two possible explanations can be considered. One is the decrease of recombination at IO-TiO2/electrolyte interfaces, and the other one is the reduction of the back-electron injection from the TiO2 electrode to QDs. All of the above results are effective for improving the photovoltaic properties of QDSSCs. View Full-Text
Keywords: quantum dot-sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs); inverse opal-TiO2; surface passivation quantum dot-sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs); inverse opal-TiO2; surface passivation
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Hori, K.; Zhang, Y.; Tusamalee, P.; Nakazawa, N.; Yoshihara, Y.; Wang, R.; Toyoda, T.; Hayase, S.; Shen, Q. Interface Passivation Effects on the Photovoltaic Performance of Quantum Dot Sensitized Inverse Opal TiO2 Solar Cells. Nanomaterials 2018, 8, 460.

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