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Studies of coupled charge transport in dye-sensitized solar cells using a numerical simulation tool
KTH, School of Chemical Science and Engineering (CHE), Chemistry, Physical Chemistry.
Condensed Matter and Interfaces, Debye Institute, Utrecht University.
Electronics and Information Systems (ELIS), Gent.
KTH, School of Chemical Science and Engineering (CHE), Chemistry, Physical Chemistry.
2006 (English)In: Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, ISSN 0927-0248, Vol. 90, no 13, 1915-1927 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this paper, we present a simulation platform designed to study coupled charge transport in dye-sensitized solar cell (DSC) devices. The platform, SLICE, is used to study the influence of ions in the electrolyte on electron transport in the nanoporous medium. The simulations indicate that both cationic and anionic properties should be considered when modelling DSCs and similar systems. Additionally, it was found that the effective permittivity coefficient, epsilon, has no influence on the electron transport when the ionic concentration is sufficiently high due to the strong coupling between the respective charged species.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 90, no 13, 1915-1927 p.
Keyword [en]
dye sensitized; solar cell; simulation; charge transport; model
National Category
Physical Chemistry
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-7311DOI: 10.1016/j.solmat.2005.12.004ISI: 000238594000005Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-33646848779OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-7311DiVA: diva2:12283
Note
QC 20100708Available from: 2007-06-07 Created: 2007-06-07 Last updated: 2010-07-09Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Studies of Charge Transport Processes in Dye-sensitized Solar Cells
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Studies of Charge Transport Processes in Dye-sensitized Solar Cells
2007 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) have attained considerable attention during the last decade because of the potential of becoming a low cost alternative to silicon based solar cells. Although efficiencies exceeding 10% in full sunlight have been presented, major improvements of the system are however limited. Electron transport is one of the processes in the cell and is of major importance for the overall performance. It is further a complex process because the transport medium is a mesoporous film and the pores are completely filled by an electrolyte with high ionic strength, resulting in electron-ion interactions. Therefore, present models describing electron transport include simplifications, which limit the practical use, in terms of improving the DSC, because the included model parameters usually have an effective nature. This thesis focuses in particular on the influence of the mesoporous film on electron transport and also on the influence of electron-ion interactions. In order to model diffusion, which is assumed to be the transport process for electrons in the DSC, Brownian motion simulations were performed and spatial restrictions, representing the influence of the mesoporous film, were introduced by using representative models for the structure. The simulations revealed that the diffusion coefficient is approximately half the value for electrons and ions in mesoporous systems. To study the influence of ions, a simulation model was constructed in where electric fields were calculated with respect to the net charge densities, resulting from the different charge carrier distributions. The simulations showed that electron transport is highly dependent on the nature of the ions, supporting an ambipolar diffusion transport model. Experimentally, it was found that the transport process is dependent on the wavelength of the incident light; we found that the extracted current was composed of two components for green light illumination, one fast and one slow. The slow component showed similar trends as the normal current. Also we found that the transport coefficient scaled linearly with film thickness for a fixed current, which questions diffusion as transport process. Other experiments, investigating various effects in the DSC, such as the effect of different cations in the electrolyte, are also presented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2007. ix, 54 p.
Series
Trita-CHE-Report, ISSN 1654-1081 ; 2007:12
Keyword
solar cell, mesoporous, dye-sensitized, model, simulation, electron transport, trap distribution
National Category
Physical Chemistry
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-4430 (URN)978-91-7178-602-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2007-06-15, D1, KTH, Lindstedtsvägen 5, Stockholm, 14:00
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20100708Available from: 2007-06-07 Created: 2007-06-07 Last updated: 2010-07-09Bibliographically approved

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