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Research Papers

A Nano Quasi-Solid Electrolyte With Modified Nano-Clay Applied to Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells

[+] Author and Article Information
Meng-Cheng Tsui, Yung-Liang Tung, Song-Yeu Tsai, Chung-Wen Lan

Photovoltaics Technology Center, Industrial Technology Research Institute, 195, Section 4, Chung Hsing Road, Chutung, Hsinchu, Taiwan 310, R.O.C.tsuijim@itri.org.tw

J. Sol. Energy Eng 133(1), 011002 (Nov 23, 2010) (3 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4001407 History: Received January 11, 2009; Revised February 12, 2010; Published November 23, 2010; Online November 23, 2010

The gel electrolytes for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) have been reported recently. Such electrolytes have their own liquid electrolyte properties and a quasi-solid electrolyte morphology. In this paper, nano-clay was chosen as gelator and mixed with liquid electrolytes to form clay type nanocomposite gel. This gel electrolyte consists of liquid electrolytes and surface modified nano-clay. The surface modifier makes nano-clay disperse well in liquid electrolytes. Nano-clay mixed with electrolyte will increase its viscosity and it is believed to be helpful in fabricating flexible DSSC. In general, an increase in viscosity will decrease ionic mobility and decrease photovoltaic conversion efficiency. The ionic conductivity was determined by the viscosity of the nano-clay gel with different surface modifiers. The ionic transfer rate of the nano-clay gel electrolyte is controlled by the diffusion and exchange reaction. The clay type gel electrolyte has higher ionic conductivity. Finally, the electrochemistry properties and the DSSC performances for the nano-clay type gel electrolyte have been discussed in this paper.

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Figures

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Figure 6

Diffusion of ionic species thought the d-spacing by modified nano-clay: (a) ideal phenomenon and (b) actual phenomenon

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Figure 5

The wide angle X-ray scattering for different electrolytes

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Figure 4

The relationship between nano-clay content and efficiency (η) for electrolyte A in AN. The slashed area shows the content of clay, which is much less than to gelation.

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Figure 3

Steady-state voltammograms of electrolytes with Pt ultramicroelectrode. Scan rate: 10 mV/s.

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Figure 2

Photocurrent density-voltage characteristics of the DSSC under AM 1.5 (100 mW/cm2) illumination

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Figure 1

Pictures of the ionic nano-clay (electrolyte A/AN) composite gel contained clay: (a) it was in the sample capsule turned upside down and (b) it was scooped up with a spoon

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