Poly(vinyl chloride)-graft-poly(N-vinyl caprolactam) graft copolymer: Synthesis and use as template for porous TiO 2 thin films in dye-sensitized solar cells

Rajkumar Patel, Sung Hoon Ahn, Won Seok Chi, Jong Hak Kim

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Poly(N-vinyl caprolactam) (PNVCL) side chains were grafted to a poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC) backbone via atom transfer radical polymerization. The synthesized PVC-g-PNVCL graft copolymer was templated for the preparation of porous TiO 2 thin films, which involved a sol-gel reaction and calcination process. The interaction of the carbonyl groups in the PVC-g-PNVCL with the titania was revealed by FT-IR spectroscopy. X-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy analysis showed the formation of porous TiO 2 thin films with the anatase phase. A series of porous TiO 2 thin films with different pore sizes and porosities was prepared by varying the solution compositions and were used as photoelectrodes in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSC) with a polymer electrolyte. The DSSC performed best when using the TiO 2 film with higher porosity, lower interfacial resistance, and longer electron life time. The highest energy conversion efficiency, photovoltage (V oc), photocurrent density (J sc), and fill factor (FF) were 1. 2%, 0. 68 V, 3. 2 mA/cm 2, and 0. 57 at 100 mW/cm 2, respectively, for the quasi-solid state DSSC with a 730-nm-thick TiO 2 film.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395-402
Number of pages8
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Apr 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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