Characterization of Surface Passivation by Poly(methylsiloxane) for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Employing the Ferrocene Redox Couple

One-electron outer-sphere redox couples, such as ferrocene/ferrocenium, are an interesting alternative to the iodide/triiodide redox couple that is normally employed in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) because they should reduce the driving force needed to regenerate the dye. Unfortunately, 1-electron redox couples also show enhanced recombination with photoinjected electrons, and methods to inhibit this recombination are needed for functioning DSCs. Dye-sensitized titanium dioxide surfaces were passivated by a trichloromethylsilane reaction to decrease the fast recombination rates when using the ferrocene redox couple. The formation and binding of poly(methylsiloxane) on the dye-sensitized TiO2 surface was verified with IR spectroscopy and photoelectron spectroscopy. Photoelectrochem. characterization of the silanization method showed that the treatment decreased the recombination rate of photoinjected electrons with ferrocenium and thereby improved the efficiency of the DSC. Transient absorption spectroscopy revealed, however, that the poly(methylsiloxane) coatings slowed down the regeneration of the oxidized dye by the ferrocene and prevented the regeneration of some of the dye mols.

Published in:
Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 114, 10551-10558

 Record created 2015-07-06, last modified 2018-03-17

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