Dry Plasma Synthesis of Pt-NPs/MWNT Nanohybrids and Their Application on the Counter Electrode of Dye-sensitized Solar Cells

V.-D. Dao, H.-S. Choi
Chungnam National University, KR

Keywords: platinum, nanoparticle, plasma, electrode, solar, cell

Summary:

Due to high specific surface area, electrical conductivity and chemical stability, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have become very useful supports for noble-metal nanoparticles (NPs) such as platinum (Pt) and gold (Au). Especially, the Pt-NPs/CNT nanohybrids have many potential applications for the counter electrode of dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs). So far, supported metal NPs have been mostly synthesized in either liquid or gas phase. It has still been a great challenge to synthesize high quality nanohybrids containing many uniform metal NPs well dispersed on CNT. Herein, we present a novel and facile process of efficiently synthesizing Pt-NPs inside and outside of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) using a dry plasma reduction (DPR) at near room temperature under atmospheric pressure. The Pt-NPs with a size of 2~3 nm are stably and uniformly hybridized on both inner and outer surfaces of MWNT (Figure 1). The nanohybrid materials are applied to counter electrode (CE) of dye-sensitized solar cell (DSC). Electrochemical impedance measurement of the DSC reveals that the charge-transfer resistance of MWNT/Ptnanohybrid-coated CE prepared using DPR is quite low. The DSC exhibits fairly improved photo-voltaic efficiency.