Green Chemistry Derived Metal-modified Titania used for Dye-sensitized Solar Cell

S. Bashir, H. Zhang, J. Guo, J. Liu
Texas A&M University-Kingsville, US

Keywords: nano-materials, metal insertion, band gap


A significant accomplishment of this study lies in the development of metal modified titania (M-TiO2) cathode via a bottom-up green synthesis approach for application in dye-sensitized solar cells. The motiva-tions of this study are to: (1) implement fundamental research in nanochemistry for alternative application of metal/titania; (2) measurement of the alterations of band gap energy of the M-TiO2 nanomaterials as a function of metal insertion (relative to titania alone); and (3) integration of advanced instrumentation to aid improvement of energy conversion of dye-sensitized solar cells. The density of states (DOS) and changes in the band-gap upon Fe insertion into TiO2 was measured through spectroscopy. The electronic structure of Fe-TiO2 (x=1,3,5%) powder was measured by soft x-ray absorption and emission (XAS/XES), respectively. The zeta-potential to evaluate the stability of M-TiO2. The zeta-potential was averaged at (minus) -42.4 mV, indicating the high stable nanomaterials were received. High temperature XRD data indicated that the anatase phase was obtained. The lattice parameters’ increase due to thermal expansion and crystallite size increase were observed. Ti occu-pancy in the lattice was found to be 0.916 and oxygen is 1.000, with two independent phases.