Heterojunction PbS Nanocrystal Solar Cells with Oxide Charge-Transport Layers

Byung-Ryool Hyun, Joshua J. Choi, Kyle L. Seyler, Tobias Hanrath, Frank W. Wise

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Oxides are commonly employed as electron-transport layers in optoelectronic devices based on semiconductor nanocrystals, but are relatively rare as hole-transport layers. We report studies of NiO hole-transport layers in PbS nanocrystal photovoltaic structures. Transient fluorescence experiments are used to verify the relevant energy levels for hole transfer. On the basis of these results, planar heterojunction devices with ZnO as the photoanode and NiO as the photocathode were fabricated and characterized. Solution-processed devices were used to systematically study the dependence on nanocrystal size and achieve conversion efficiency as high as 2.5%. Optical modeling indicates that optimum performance should be obtained with thinner oxide layers than can be produced reliably by solution casting. Roomerature sputtering allows deposition of oxide layers as thin as 10 nm, which enables optimization of device performance with respect to the thickness of the charge-transport layers. The best devices achieve an open-circuit voltage of 0.72 V and efficiency of 5.3% while eliminating most organic material from the structure and being compatible with tandem structures. © 2013 American Chemical Society.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10938-10947
Number of pages10
JournalACS Nano
Issue number12
StatePublished - Nov 27 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): KUS-C1-018-02
Acknowledgements: Research was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Division of Materials Sciences and Engineering, under Award DE-SC0006647 (material synthesis and device fabrication) and an award (no. KUS-C1-018-02) made by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (device testing). This work made use of the Cornell Center for Materials Research Shared Facilities, which are supported through the NSF MRSEC program (DMR-1120296).
This publication acknowledges KAUST support, but has no KAUST affiliated authors.


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