These authors contributed equally to this work.
Efficient Water-Splitting Device Based on a Bismuth Vanadate Photoanode and Thin-Film Silicon Solar Cells
Article first published online: 19 AUG 2014
© 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
Volume 7, Issue 10, pages 2832–2838, October 2014
How to Cite
Han, L., Abdi, F. F., van de Krol, R., Liu, R., Huang, Z., Lewerenz, H.-J., Dam, B., Zeman, M. and Smets, A. H. M. (2014), Efficient Water-Splitting Device Based on a Bismuth Vanadate Photoanode and Thin-Film Silicon Solar Cells. ChemSusChem, 7: 2832–2838. doi: 10.1002/cssc.201402456
- Issue published online: 30 SEP 2014
- Article first published online: 19 AUG 2014
- Manuscript Revised: 19 JUN 2014
- Manuscript Received: 23 MAY 2014
- European Commission’s Framework Project 7. Grant Number: 227179
- U.S. Department of Energy. Grant Number: DE-SC0004993
- solar cells;
- water splitting
A hybrid photovoltaic/photoelectrochemical (PV/PEC) water-splitting device with a benchmark solar-to-hydrogen conversion efficiency of 5.2 % under simulated air mass (AM) 1.5 illumination is reported. This cell consists of a gradient-doped tungsten–bismuth vanadate (W:BiVO4) photoanode and a thin-film silicon solar cell. The improvement with respect to an earlier cell that also used gradient-doped W:BiVO4 has been achieved by simultaneously introducing a textured substrate to enhance light trapping in the BiVO4 photoanode and further optimization of the W gradient doping profile in the photoanode. Various PV cells have been studied in combination with this BiVO4 photoanode, such as an amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) single junction, an a-Si:H/a-Si:H double junction, and an a-Si:H/nanocrystalline silicon (nc-Si:H) micromorph junction. The highest conversion efficiency, which is also the record efficiency for metal oxide based water-splitting devices, is reached for a tandem system consisting of the optimized W:BiVO4 photoanode and the micromorph (a-Si:H/nc-Si:H) cell. This record efficiency is attributed to the increased performance of the BiVO4 photoanode, which is the limiting factor in this hybrid PEC/PV device, as well as better spectral matching between BiVO4 and the nc-Si:H cell.