High boiling point solvent-based dye solar cells pass a harsh thermal ageing test


Stergiopoulos T, Kontos AG, Jiang N, Milliken D, Desilvestro H, Likodimos V, Falaras P. High boiling point solvent-based dye solar cells pass a harsh thermal ageing test. Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells [Internet]. 2016;144:457-466.


Dye solar cells (DSCs) have emerged as one of the most efficient third-generation photovoltaic (PV) technologies, whose commercialization is mainly hampered by the lack of sufficient long-term stability compared to conventional PV devices. In this work, it is demonstrated that solvent based DSCs using tetraglyme as a non-nitrile, high boiling point, organic solvent for the iodide/triiodide redox shuttle, can pass a harsh accelerated thermal ageing test of 3000 h light soaking followed by additional 2000 h thermal ageing at 85 °C. Electrochemical and spectroscopic analysis on thermal degradation effects revealed that a conduction band edge shift towards more negative potentials for tetraglyme-DSCs underlies the enhanced photopotential of aged cells, compensating for the thermally induced photocurrent reduction due to slight triiodide loss. The tetraglyme-based solar cells (in contrast to cells based on methoxypropionitrile-MPN) showed exceptional stability, compatible with the established IEC61646 protocol for thin film PVs, keeping ca. 90% of their initial performance under 1 sun illumination. Quite notably, the cells even increased their initial efficiency by 4% when illuminated under 0.1 sun. This is the first time in literature that such a stability record is accomplished for solvent based DSCs utilizing commercially available and cost-effective materials. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


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