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Direct measurement of the internal electron quasi-Fermi level in dye sensitized solar cells using a titanium secondary electrode

: Lobato, K.; Peter, L.M.; Würfel, U.


Journal of physical chemistry. B 110 (2006), Nr.33, S.16201-16204
ISSN: 1089-5647
ISSN: 1520-6106
ISSN: 1520-5207
Fraunhofer ISE ()

The spatial dependence of the electron quasi-Fermi level (QFL) in the interior of dye sensitized nanocrystalline solar cells (DSC) under short circuit conditions can be inferred from calculations based on a diffusive electron transport model. The calculations predict that the difference in the QFL between the electrolyte and contact sides of the TiO2 layer under short circuit conditions at 1 sun could be as much as 0.5-0.7 eV. The predicted QFL profiles depend on assumptions made about energy positions, electron mobility, and the conduction band density of states. In this work, the position of the QFL at the electrolyte side of the dye sensitized TiO2 film in a DSC has been measured using a thin passivated titanium contact deposited on top of the nanocrystalline TiO2 by evaporation. The method allows changes in the electron QFL at all points on the IV characteristic of the cell to be monitored under dark and photostationary conditions. In addition, cells incorporating the titanium electrode can give information about the behavior of the QFL under dynamic conditions.