Semiconductor quantum dot-SWCNT architectures for solar energy conversion

FUEL 264

Prashant V. Kamat, pkamat@nd.edu, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Notre Dame, Radiation Laboratory, Notre Dame, IN 46556, Istvan Robel, Chemistry Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 87544, and Anusorn Kongkanand, Notre Dame Radiation Laboratory, University of Notre Dame, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Notre Dame, IN 46556.
Semiconductor nanoparticles and carbon nanotubes with tailored light harvesting properties provide new ways to develop next generation solar cells. The ability of these materials to convert light energy into electrical energy has now been explored by assembling them on electrode surfaces. The photoresponse of TiO2 nanoarray has been extended into the visible by attaching CdSe quantum dots. These composite semiconductor nanostructures have been successfully employed in photoelectrochemical cells for generating photocurrent under visible light excitation. The salient features of carbon nanotube scaffolds for facilitating charge collection and charge transport will be discussed. Such nanowire/nanotube architecture plays an important role in improving the efficiency of nanostructure based solar cells.