Solar cells represent a principal energy technology to convert light into electricity. Commercial solar cells are at present predominately produced by single- or multi-crystalline silicon wafers. The main drawback to silicon-based solar cells, however, is high material and manufacturing costs. Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) have attracted much attention during recent years because of the low production cost and other advantages. The photoanode (working electrode) plays a key role in determining the performance of DSSCs. In particular, nanostructured photoanodes with a large surface area, high electron transfer efficiency, and low electron recombination facilitate to prepare DSSCs with high energy conversion efficiency. In this review article, we summarize recent progress in the development of novel photoanodes for DSSCs. Effect of semiconductor material (e.g. TiO2, ZnO, SnO2, N2O5, and nano carbon), preparation, morphology and structure (e.g. nanoparticles, nanorods, nanofibers, nanotubes, fiber/particle composites, and hierarchical structure) on photovoltaic performance of DSSCs is described. The possibility of replacing silicon-based solar cells with DSSCs is discussed.
- dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC)