Here we report the highest energy conversion efficiency and good stability of PbS thin film-based depleted heterojunction solar cells, not involving PbS quantum dots. The PbS thin films were grown by the low cost chemical bath deposition (CBD) process at relatively low temperatures. Compared to the quantum dot solar cells which require critical and multistep complex procedures for surface passivation, the present approach, leveraging the facile modulation of the optoelectronic properties of the PbS films by the CBD process, offers a simpler route for optimization of PbS-based solar cells. Through an architectural modification, wherein two band-aligned junctions are stacked without any intervening layers, an enhancement of conversion efficiency by as much as 30% from 3.10 to 4.03% facilitated by absorption of a wider range of solar spectrum has been obtained. As an added advantage of the low band gap PbS stacked over a wide gap PbS, the devices show stability over a period of 10 days.
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This work was financially supported by a grant of the National Research Foundation of Korea (2011-0020285).
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