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Langmuir. 2011 Dec 6;27(23):14609-14. doi: 10.1021/la203557f. Epub 2011 Nov 10.

Photocurrent enhancement by surface plasmon resonance of silver nanoparticles in highly porous dye-sensitized solar cells.

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Department of Chemistry and Argonne-Northwestern Solar Energy Research Center (ANSER), Northwestern University, 2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, Illinois 60208, USA.


Localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) by silver nanoparticles that are photochemically incorporated into an electrode-supported TiO(2) nanoparticulate framework enhances the extinction of a subsequently adsorbed dye (the ruthenium-containing molecule, N719). The enhancement arises from both an increase in the dye's effective absorption cross section and a modest increase in the framework surface area. Deployment of the silver-modified assembly as a photoanode in dye-sensitized solar cells leads to light-to-electrical energy conversion with an overall efficiency of 8.9%. This represents a 25% improvement over the performance of otherwise identical solar cells lacking corrosion-protected silver nanoparticles. As one would expect based on increased dye loading and electromagnetic field enhanced (LSPR-enhanced) absorption, the improvement is manifested chiefly as an increase in photocurrent density ascribable to improved light harvesting.

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