The effect of TBP on Co(II/III) redox electrolyte was examined. Photocurrent of the device can be limited in electrolyte with high TBP concentration due to its viscous nature. The higher amount of TBP in electrolyte increases the viscosity of electrolyte and consequently slows down the diffusion of CoIII species. This is a unique observation for Co(II/III) electrolyte which is not observed in I–/I3– electrolyte. An increase in TBP concentration from 0.1 to 0.5 M in a cobalt electrolyte containing 0.1 M Co(bpy)3(TFSI)2 and 0.033 M Co(bpy)3(TFSI)3 produced a 90 mV improvement in open-circuit potential (Voc).
Using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), this enhancement could be attributed to the reduced interfacial recombination (33%) as well as a negative shift in the conduction band level of TiO2 (67%). Although the influence of TBP in iodide/triiodide and cobalt-complex electrolytes is similar, the increase of viscosity at relatively high concentration of TBP in Co electrolyte should be taken into consideration in order to accomplish high efficiency DSCs based on Co-complex electrolytes.
Koh, T.M., Nonomura, K., Mathews, N., Hagfeldt, A., Grätzel, M., Mhaisalkar, S.G. and Grimsdale, A.C., 2013. Influence of 4-tert-butylpyridine in DSCs with CoII/III redox mediator. The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 117(30), pp.15515-15522.
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