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Dual-Functional Electrochromic Smart Window Using WO3·H2O‑rGO Nanocomposite Ink Spray-Coated on a Low-Cost Hybrid Electrode
journal contributionposted on 2023-12-04, 17:33 authored by Pritha Dutta, Mohit Verma, Mayank S. Paliwal, Indrajit Mondal, Mukhesh K. Ganesha, Ritu Gupta, Ashutosh K. Singh, Giridhar U. Kulkarni
Electrochromic windows have gained growing interest for their ability to change their optical state in the visible and NIR ranges with minimal input power, making them energy-efficient. However, material processing costs, fabrication complexity, and poor electrochromic properties can be barriers to the widespread adoption of this technology. To address these issues, electrochromic material and fabrication processes are designed to realize their potential as a cost-effective and energy-efficient technology. In this work, an electrochromic composite material-based ink is synthesized consisting of WO3·H2O nanoplates supported on rGO (reduced graphene oxide) nanosheets (WH-rGO), wherein an optimized amount of rGO (0.05 to 0.5 wt %) is introduced for providing a higher conduction pathway for efficient charge transport without sacrificing the electrochromic performance of WO3·H2O nanoplates. The stable ink dispersion prepared in the study is deposited by spray coating on transparent conducting electrodes over large areas (25 cm2). The WH-rGO nanocomposite (0.4 wt %) results in 43% optical modulation at 700 nm, with bleaching and coloration times of 6 and 8 s, respectively. Interestingly, the device also possesses an electrochemical energy storage capability with an areal capacitance of 16.3 mF/cm2. The electrochromic composite material is successfully translated on tin doped indium oxide (ITO)-coated Al metal mesh hybrid electrodes (T = 80%, Rs = 40 Ω/□) to replace ITO. Finally, an electrochromic device of 5 × 5 cm2 is fabricated by spray-coating the ink on cost-effective ITO/Al-mesh hybrid electrodes. The device displays blue to colorless modulation with an excellent bleaching time of 0.43 s and a coloration time of 2.16 s, making it one among the fast-operating devices fabricated by complete solution processing. This work showcases the economical production of a dual-function electrochromic device, which can be a feasible option as an alternative to existing ITO-based devices in both automotive and infrastructure applications.
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