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Advanced Materials

The Role of a “Schottky Barrier” at an Electron-Collection Electrode in Solid-State Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells


  • This work was funded by the MOLYCELL European project (OFES 03.0681-1). We thank Ilkay Cesar and Robin Humphry-Baker for valuable discussions and Michel Schaer and Libero Zuppiroli from the Laboratory of Optoelectronics of Molecular Materials at EPFL where some of the measurements were performed.


Solid-state dye-sensitized solar cells perform in a strictly different manner when tested under monochromatic as opposed to white-light illumination. Without a UV component in the illumination source, a Schottky barrier is present at the anode interface. Data suggest (see figure) that the generation of surface states, under white-light illumination, results in a pinning of the Fermi level in the TiO2 at the anode interface. Improving this contact facilitates significant improvement in the device performance.

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