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The Effect of ZnO and its Nanocomposite on the Performance of Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell

Author(s): Hanaa Selim, Amr A Nada, Mona El-Sayed , Hegazey RM, Eglal R Souaya and Kotkata MF

The effect of CuO doping of ZnO nanoparticles on the performance of dye sensitize solar cells (DSSCs) has been investigated. Initially ZnO nanoparticles was synthesized using co-preciptation method then ZnO-CuO nanocomposite were fabricated by a novel Pechini route using different CuO molar concentration ratios applied in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The thermal, structural, optical and electrical characterization were done using various techniques such as (TGA/ DSC) , XRD, HR-TEM, FT-IR, Raman, UV-DRS, PL, I-V. The results of the XRD analysis showed that the CuO-ZnO composite has a nanometer size and the existence of new peak at 38.65O corresponds to secondary phase of CuO, which informs the doping process. UV-DRS spectra of doped samples showed red shift of reflectance band compared to pure ZnO NPs and PL spectra showed a strong emission band at 400 nm. At the optimized condition, the thin films of undoped ZnO and CuO doped ZnO were pasted on ITO glass using Pulse Laser Deposition (PLD) technique and used as working electrodes in dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). These working electrodes were sensitized with Eosin dye and coupled with platinum coated cathode. I-V measurements showed improved performance of ZnO-CuO nanocomposite DSSC with the efficiency of 2.9± 0.22 % at the optimum doping (ZC1.5) were observed as compared to ZnO DSSC 1.26 ± 0.08%.

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