Porphyrins as Potential Sensitizers for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells
Recently, dye-sensitized solar cells have attracted much attention relevant to global environmental issues. So far ruthenium(II) bipyridyl complexes have proven to be the most efficient TiO2 sensitizers in dye-sensitized solar cells. However, the highest power conversion efficiency has been stagnated in recent years. More importantly, considering that ruthenium is rare and expensive, novel dyes without metal or using inexpensive metal are desirable for highly efficient dye-sensitized solar cells. To fulfill the requirement, it is crucial to develop inexpensive novel dyes that exhibit high efficiencies in terms of light-harvesting, charge separation, and charge collection. Porphyrins are important classes of potential sensitizers for highly efficient dye-sensitized solar cells owing to their photostability and potentially high light-harvesting capabilities that would allow applications in thinner, low-cost dye-sensitized solar cells. However, typical porphyrins possess an intense Soret band at 400 nm and moderate Q bands at 600 nm, which does not match solar energy distribution on the earth. Therefore, the unmatched light-harvesting property relative to the ruthenium complexes has limited the cell performance of porphyrin-sensitized TiO2 cells. Elongation of the -conjugation and loss of symmetry in porphyrins cause broadening and red-shift of the absorption bands together with an increasing intensity of the Q bands relative to that of the Soret band. On the basis of the strategy, the cell performance of porphyrin-sensitized solar cells has been improved remarkably by the enhanced light absorption. The efficiency of porphyrin-sensitized solar cells could be improved significantly if the dyes with larger red and near-infrared absorption could be developed.
H. Imahori "Porphyrins as Potential Sensitizers for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells", Key Engineering Materials, Vol. 451, pp. 29-40, 2011