Adapting Ruthenium Sensitizers to Cobalt Electrolyte Systems
In this work, we report the use of bulky substitutions in a new heteroleptic ruthenium(II) bipyridine complex, Ru(NCS)(2)LL', coded TT-230 to obtain high open-circuit potential in a dye-sensitized solar cell (where L is a bipyridine ligand appended with two cyclopenta(2,1-b;3,4-bA)dithiophene moieties, and L' = 4,4,'-dicarboxylic acid 2,2'-bipyridine). The electrolytes based on cobalt complexes have shown significant advantages in terms of attainable open-circuit potential compared to the standard iodide/tri-iodide redox mediators. These merits of the cobalt complexes were previously realized with a porphyrin sensitizer, achieving a V-OC greater than 1 V in DSC. However, with conventional Ru(II)-polypyridyl complexes such as the C101 dye, similar increase in the V-OC could not be attained due to the enhanced recombination. In this work, we have shown that the use of bulky substituents can prevent the back reaction of photogenerated electron and subsequently increase the open-circuit potential of the device. The recombination processes were investigated by transient photovoltage decay measurements.