A high-performance quantum dot-sensitized solar cell (QDSSC) is reported, which consists of a TiO 2/CuInS 2-QDs/CdS/ZnS photoanode, a polysulfide electrolyte, and a CuS counter electrode. The sensitization process involves attaching presynthesized CuInS 2 QDs (3.5 nm) to a TiO 2 substrate with a bifunctional linker, followed by coating CdS with successive ionic layer adsorption and reaction (SILAR) and ZnS as the last SILAR layer for passivation. This process constructs a sensitizing layer that comprises CdS nanocrystals, closely packed around the earlier-linked CuInS 2 QDs, which serve as the pillars of the layer. The CuS counter electrode, prepared via successive ionic solution coating and reaction, has a small charge transfer resistance in the polysulfide electrolyte. The QDSSC exhibits a short-circuit photocurrent (J sc) of 16.9 mA cm -2, an open-circuit photovoltage (V oc) of 0.56 V, a fill factor of 0.45, and a conversion efficiency of 4.2% under one-sun illumination. The heterojunction between the CuInS 2 QDs and CdS extends both the optical absorption and incident photon conversion efficiency (IPCE) spectra of the cell to a longer wavelength of approximately 800 nm, and provides an IPCE of nearly 80% at 510 nm. The high TiO 2 surface coverage of the sensitizers suppresses recombination of the photogenerated electrons. This results in a longer lifetime for the electrons, and therefore, the high V oc value. The notably high J sc and V oc values demonstrate that this sensitization strategy, which exploits the quantum confinement reduction and other synergistic effects of the CuInS 2-QDs/CdS/ZnS heterostructure, can potentially outperform those of other QDSSCs.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Chemistry
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering