High-efficiency dye-sensitized solar cells with ferrocene-based electrolytes

Torben Daeneke, Tae-Hyuk Kwon, Andrew Holmes, Noel Duffy, Udo Bach, Leone Spiccia

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501 Citations (Scopus)


Dye-sensitized solar cells based on iodide/triiodide (I(-)/I(3)(-)) electrolytes are viable low-cost alternatives to conventional silicon solar cells. However, as well as providing record efficiencies of up to 12.0 , the use of I(-)/I(3)(-) in such solar cells also brings about certain limitations that stem from its corrosive nature and complex two-electron redox chemistry. Alternative redox mediators have been investigated, but these generally fall well short of matching the performance of conventional I(-)/I(3)(-) electrolytes. Here, we report energy conversion efficiencies of 7.5 (simulated sunlight, AM1.5, 1,000 W m(-2)) for dye-sensitized solar cells combining the archetypal ferrocene/ferrocenium (Fc/Fc(+)) single-electron redox couple with a novel metal-free organic donor-acceptor sensitizer (Carbz-PAHTDTT). These Fc/Fc(+)-based devices exceed the efficiency achieved for devices prepared using I(-)/I(3)(-) electrolytes under comparable conditions, revealing the great potential of ferrocene-based electrolytes in future dye-sensitized solar cells applications. This improvement results from a more favourable matching of the redox potential of the ferrocene couple with that of the new donor-acceptor sensitizer.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211 - 215
Number of pages5
JournalNature Chemistry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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