Design and coupling of multifunctional TiO2nanotube photonic crystal to nanocrystalline titania layer as semi-transparent photoanode for dye-sensitized solar cell

Min Guo, Keyu Xie, Jia Lin, Zehui Yong, Cho Tung Yip, Li Min Zhou, Yu Wang, Haitao Huang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

119 Citations (Scopus)


In order to conquer the challenges in the current technology to couple a dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) with a photonic crystal (PC), we propose a novel design of PC-based photoanode, composed of a thick TiO2nanoparticle absorption layer and a thin TiO2nanotube photonic crystal (TiO2NT PC) membrane. In this architecture, the bandgap of TiO2NT PC can be precisely tailored by modulating the anodization parameters using the current-pulse anodization process. Owing to the selective reflectivity of TiO2NT PC, the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the electrodes reveals a strong wavelength dependence. Strategies to enhance the efficiency of the newly designed DSSC and its relation to the selective reflection of the photoanode are discussed and evaluated by experimental and simulated results. Meanwhile, the functionality of TiO2NT PC, offering both PC and light-scattering effects, has also been clarified. The combined effects of PC and light-scattering yield the maximum enhancement in PCE (39.5%) when the tailored TiO2NT PC, with the best matching of its reflectance maximum to the dye absorption maximum, is integrated into a DSSC. The work presented here provides new insights into the design and tailoring of a photonic crystal to enhance the PCE of DSSCs for practical applications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9881-9888
Number of pages8
JournalEnergy and Environmental Science
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Pollution

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