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Enhanced Near-Infrared to Visible Upconversion Nanoparticles of Ho3+-Yb3+-F Tri-Doped TiO2 and Its Application in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells with 37% Improvement in Power Conversion Efficiency

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posted on 04.08.2014, 00:00 by Jia Yu, Yulin Yang, Ruiqing Fan, Danqing Liu, Liguo Wei, Shuo Chen, Liang Li, Bin Yang, Wenwu Cao
New near-infrared (NIR)-to-green upconversion nanoparticles of Ho3+-Yb3+-F tridoped TiO2 (UC-F-TiO2) were designed and fabricated via the hydrosol–hydrothermal method. Under 980 nm NIR excitation, UC-F-TiO2 emit strong green upconversion fluorescence with three emission bands at 543, 644, and 751 nm and convert the NIR light in situ to the dye-sensitive visible light that could effectively reduce the distance between upconversion materials and sensitizers; thus, they minimize the loss of the converted light. Our results show that this UC-F-TiO2 offers excellent opportunities for the other types of solar cells applications, such as organic solar cells, c-Si solar cells, multijunction solar cells, and so on. When integrating the UC-F-TiO2 into dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs), superior total energy conversion efficiency was achieved. Under AM1.5G light, open-circuit voltage reached 0.77 ± 0.01 V, short-circuit current density reached 21.00 ± 0.69 mA cm–2, which resulted in an impressive overall energy conversion efficiency of 9.91 ± 0.30%, a 37% enhancement compared to DSSCs with pristine TiO2 photoanode.