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Ni Mg Mixed Metal Oxides for p-Type Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells

Zannotti, Marco; Wood, Christopher J.; Summers, Gareth H.; Stevens, Lee A.; Hall, Matthew R.; Snape, Colin E.; Giovannetti, Rita; Gibson, Elizabeth A.


Marco Zannotti

Gareth H. Summers

Senior Research Fellow

Matthew R. Hall

Professor of Chemical Technology & Chemical Eng

Rita Giovannetti

Elizabeth A. Gibson


Mg Ni mixed metal oxide photocathodes have been prepared by a mixed NiCl2/MgCl2 sol-gel process. The MgO/NiO electrodes have been extensively characterized using physical and electrochemical methods. Dye-sensitized solar cells have been prepared from these films and the higher concentrations of MgO improved the photovoltage of these devices, however, there was a notable drop in photocurrent with increasing Mg2+. Charge extraction and XPS experiments revealed that the cause of this was a positive shift in the energy of the valence band which decreased the driving force for electron transfer from the NiO film to the dye and therefore the photocurrent. In addition, increasing concentrations of MgO increases the volume of pores between 0.500 to 0.050 μm, while reducing pore volumes in the mesopore range (less than 0.050 μm) and lowering BET surface area from approximately 41 down to 30 m2 g-1. A MgO concentration of 5% was found to strike a balance between the increased photovoltage and decreased photocurrent, possessing a BET surface area of 35 m2 g-1 and a large pore volume in both the meso and macropore range, which lead to a higher overall power conversion efficiency than NiO alone.


Giovanetti, R., Zannotti, M., Wood, C. J., Summers, G. H., Stevens, L. A., Hall, M. R., …Gibson, E. A. (2015). Ni Mg Mixed Metal Oxides for p-Type Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, 7(44), 24556-24565.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 15, 2015
Online Publication Date Oct 27, 2015
Publication Date Oct 15, 2015
Deposit Date Jul 6, 2016
Publicly Available Date Jul 6, 2016
Journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
Print ISSN 1944-8244
Electronic ISSN 1944-8252
Publisher American Chemical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 7
Issue 44
Pages 24556-24565
Keywords Dye-sensitized solar cells, nickel oxide, p-type, photocathode, artificial photosynthesis
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Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address:
Additional Information This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, copyright © 2015 American Chemical Society after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see


Mg_NiO_resubmitted.pdf (1.4 Mb)

Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address:

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