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Effects of Mixed-Phase Copper Oxide Nanofibers in ZnO Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells on Efficiency Enhancement

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The mixed phases of copper oxide nanofibers (CuO and Cu2O) were introduced as a double layer in photoelectrodes of ZnO based dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). In this study, the various masses of copper oxide nanofibers (0–5.70 mg) were prepared in viscous solution form and coated on 1 cm2 of the ZnO layer. The ZnO based DSSCs with different surface densities of copper oxide layers (0–5.70 mg/cm2 were fabricated and investigated for power conversion efficiency, photocurrent, photovoltage, electrical properties and optical properties. The highest photoconversion efficiency of 1.87% and the highest current density of 6.93 mA/cm2 were observed for copper oxide nanofibers at a density of 3.42 mg/cm2. The efficiency enhancement of the ZnO DSSCs coating by mixed-phase copper oxide nanofiber layer is related to an increase in charge carrier density that must be faster than the charge recombination rate. This high performance can be elucidated by the large internal surface area for dye adsorption and by the wide photon absorption range. Therefore, the double layer structure can serve as the active photo layer. This study shows that the composite structure electrode is the best approach compared to a single structure electrode for improving the cell efficiency of DSSCs.
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Keywords: Cu2O; CuO; DSSCs; Microwave; Nanofibers

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Chiang Mai University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physics and Materials Science, Muang District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand

Publication date: August 1, 2017

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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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