Researchers boost solar cells efficiency

TEHRAN, Jan. 27 (MNA) – Iranian and Singaporean researchers increased the efficiency of dye-sensitized solar cells to convert solar energy into electrical one, INIC reports.

According to Iran Nanotechnology Initiative Council (INIC), Iranian and Singaporean researchers applied an industrial, cost effective and simple method to boost the efficiency of dye-sensitized solar cells to convert solar energy into electrical one by creating nanometric changes in cell structures.

The aim of the research was to design and to produce nanostructured solar cells with high efficiency through engineering of the cell layers. Designing and production of solar cells by using two layers is a new approach in the production of these devices. In this method, a light scattering layer is added to the initial layer containing titanium dioxide nanoparticles. Surface area of the layer increases in this research due to the change in titanium dioxide nanostructure used in the scattering layer. Therefore, dye and light sorption capacity increase in these cells, and as a result, the efficiency increases too.

Previous studies suggested that application of scattering layer – which usually has a one-dimensional structure such as nanobars and nanotubes – results in scattering and increasing the length of the path through which light comes in. However, the weak point of the new design (production of solar cells by using two layers) is this fact that it decreases the surface area and dye sorption. As a result, the solar cell efficiency decreases. However, the one-dimensional structure has been conserved in this research and controlled scratch-like surfaces have been created on the surface of nanobars. This process increases surface area, dye sorption capacity and efficiency in the produced solar cells.

The researchers have successfully conserved the main advantage of titanium oxide nanobar in the light scattering layer, and they have overcome the problem of decreasing the surface area.

Results of the research have been published in Journal of Applied Electrochemistry, vol. 45, issue 8, 2015, pp. 831-838.

 

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