Enhanced Performance of P3HT/TiO2 Bilayer Heterojunction Photovoltaic Device Having Gold Nanoparticles in the Donor Layer

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The photovoltaic effects of blending gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) into the donor layer of a poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT)/TiO2 bilayer heterojunction device have been studied. P3HT was synthesized via the modified Gragnard metathesis method and AuNPs with sizes ranging from 12 to 15 nm were formed via a reduction of HAuCl4. The blending of AuNPs into P3HT caused a lower photoluminescence (PL) intensities and a decreased energy level of the highest occupied molecular orbital (HOMO) than the pristine P3HT owing to the good electron-accepting nature of AuNPs. Upon the use of P3HT-AuNPs as the donor layer, the decreased HOMO(donor) resulted in an increased open circuit voltage (V oc) and thus enabled the fabricated (P3HT-AuNPs)/TiO2 bilayer heterojunction photovoltaic device to have an improved power conversion efficiency of solar energy. V oc as well as the overall power conversion efficiency increased with an increase in the AuNP content as a result of additional interfaces which facilitated the charge separation of excitons and percolation pathways which enhanced the electron transfer to the TiO2 acceptor. Furthermore, unannealed P3HT-AuNPs exhibited nanoholes and provided photovoltaic devices a power conversion efficiency nearly two time higher than annealed P3HT-AuNPs.


Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1166/jnn.2011.4982

Publication date: November 1, 2011

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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