We prepare dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) fabricated with a poly (ethylene glycol) based polymer gel electrolytes (PGEs) incorporating surface carbon shell-functionalized ZrO2 nanoparticles (ZrO2-C) as nanofillers (NFs). ZrO2 are polymerized via atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) using poly (ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate (POEM) as a scaffold to prepare the ZrO2-C through carbonization. The power conversion efficiency of DSSC with 12 wt% ZrO2-C/PGEs is 5.6%, exceeding that with PGEs (4.4%). The enhanced efficiency is attributed to Lewis acid-base interactions of ZrO2-C and poly (ethylene glycol), catalytic effect of the carbon shells of ZrO2-C, which results in reduced crystallinity, enhanced ion conductivity of electrolytes, decreased counterelectrode/electrolyte interfacial resistance, and improved charge transfer rate. These results demonstrate that ZrO2-C introduction to PGEs effectively improves the performance of DSSCs.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIP) (NRF-2017R1A4A1014569, NRF-2019R1C1C1010283).
© 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Chemical Engineering(all)
- Materials Science(all)