Influence of Nitrogen Doping on Device Operation for TiO2-Based Solid-State Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells: Photo-Physics from Materials to Devices
Wang, J., Tapio, K., Habert, A., Sorgues, S., Colbeau-Justin, C., Ratier, B., . . . Bouclé, J. (2016). Influence of Nitrogen Doping on Device Operation for TiO2-Based Solid-State Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells: Photo-Physics from Materials to Devices. Nanomaterials, 6 (3), 35. doi:10.3390/nano6030035
© the Authors, 2016. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License.
Solid-state dye-sensitized solar cells (ssDSSC) constitute a major approach to photovoltaic energy conversion with efficiencies over 8% reported thanks to the rational design of efficient porous metal oxide electrodes, organic chromophores, and hole transporters. Among the various strategies used to push the performance ahead, doping of the nanocrystalline titanium dioxide (TiO2) electrode is regularly proposed to extend the photo-activity of the materials into the visible range. However, although various beneficial effects for device performance have been observed in the literature, they remain strongly dependent on the method used for the production of the metal oxide, and the influence of nitrogen atoms on charge kinetics remains unclear. To shed light on this open question, we synthesized a set of N-doped TiO2 nanopowders with various nitrogen contents, and exploited them for the fabrication of ssDSSC. Particularly, we carefully analyzed the localization of the dopants using X-ray photo-electron spectroscopy (XPS) and monitored their influence on the photo-induced charge kinetics probed both at the material and device levels. We demonstrate a strong correlation between the kinetics of photo-induced charge carriers probed both at the level of the nanopowders and at the level of working solar cells, illustrating a direct transposition of the photo-physic properties from materials to devices. ...