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Efficient graphene-electrode based solar cells

n-doped-graphene-electrode-for-dssc-solar-cellsN-doping of graphene becomes a real fashion these days. In the ASAP article published today in Angewandte Chemie, scientistific consortium from Wenzhou Medical College (China), Case Western Reserve University and Youngstown State University (Ohio, USA) have shown how a metal-electrode-free dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) can be built. And what a cell – over 7% conversion efficiency could be achieved with a method, which any chemist can follow in an almost do-it-yourself manner.

 

Trying to substitute metallic electrodes (which is usually Pt for the DSSCs), the scientists have chosen N-doped graphene foam, prepared from graphene (produced in turn using the Hummer’s method from graphite) which was doped with nitrogen (NH3/Ar, 800°C). The resulting foam was spread onto an FTO glass used as a counterelectrode in the final assembly consisting of TiO2/dye composite and FTO glass as a transparent conductive electrode.

The efficiency of graphene-based system was comparable with the best existing DSSCs built with Pt electrode. This work is definitely a very interesting step towards cheap efficient solar cells, which can be built without employment of rear earth elements and nobel metals.

Image is published with permission of Angewandte Chemie
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