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Kinetic study of carminic acid and santalin natural dyes in dye-sensitized solar cells

Paper ID Volume ID Publish Year Pages File Format Full-Text
26073 43933 2016 8 PDF Available
Title
Kinetic study of carminic acid and santalin natural dyes in dye-sensitized solar cells
Abstract

•In depth study of two natural dyes in dye-sensitized solar cells.•Energy levels and kinetics analyzed.•Origins of poor solar cell performance revealed: poor regeneration and possibly electron injection losses.

The performance of natural dyes in dye-sensitized solar cells is usually worse than that of purpose-built organic dyes. Here, we set out to investigate the underlying origins. Two natural dyes, carminic acid and santalin, were selected as potential sensitizers for dye-sensitized solar cells. They were compared to a state-of-the-art organic sensitizer, LEG4, in devices using relatively thin (5 μm), transparent mesoporous TiO2 electrodes and iodide/triiodide redox electrolyte in the low-volatile solvent 3-methoxypropionitrile. All dyes adsorbed well onto mesoporous TiO2 electrodes, giving it bright red colors. The power conversion efficiency of the natural dyes, about 0.5%, was poor compared to that of LEG4 under identical conditions (5.6%), due to both lower open circuit potentials and photocurrent densities.The origin of low efficiencies was investigated using a wide range of experimental techniques, such as (spectro)electrochemistry, ns-laser transient absorption spectroscopy and transient photocurrent and photovoltage measurements. The kinetics for regeneration of the oxidized natural dyes by iodide was found to about ten times slower than that of LEG4. This is probably due to the lower driving force for this reaction. Significant electron recombination to oxidized dye molecules and possibly poor electron injection efficiency caused the poor performance of the two natural dyes in dye-sensitized solar cells. In addition, for carminic acid electron injection into the conduction band of TiO2 appears to be poor.

Keywords
Mesoporous TiO2; Organic sensitzers; Iodide/triiodide redox couple; Electron transfer reactions; Spectroelectrochemistry
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Publisher
Database: Elsevier - ScienceDirect
Journal: Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry - Volume 325, 1 July 2016, Pages 1–8
Authors
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Subjects
Physical Sciences and Engineering Chemical Engineering Bioengineering
Get Full-Text Now
Don't Miss Today's Special Offer
Price was $35.95
You save - $31
Price after discount Only $4.95
100% Money Back Guarantee
Full-text PDF Download
Online Support
Any Questions? feel free to contact us