Poly (ethylene glycol) -poly (propylene glycol) -poly (ethylene glycol) and polyvinylidene fluoride blend doped with oxydianiline-based thiourea derivatives as a novel and modest gel electrolyte system for dye-sensitized solar cell applications

Karthika, P.; Ganesan, S.

RSC Advances 10(25): 14768-14777

2020


ISSN/ISBN: 2046-2069
PMID: 35497151
DOI: 10.1039/d0ra01031f
Accession: 079891802

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Abstract
Unique symmetrical thiourea derivatives with an oxydianiline core were synthesized using cost-effective and simple methods. A new gel electrolyte system was prepared using these thiourea additives along with a highly conductive PEG-PPG-PEG block copolymer, PVDF, and an iodide/triiodide redox couple. The PEG units present in the electrolyte are well-known for their intense segmental motion of ions, which can degrade the recombination rate and favour the charge transfer. The thiourea additives interacted well with the redox couple to limit iodine sublimation and their adsorption induced a negative potential shift for TiO2. The highest efficiency attained by utilizing such gel polymer electrolytes was 5.75%, especially with 1,1'-(oxybis(4,1-phenylene))bis(3-(6-methylpyridin-2-yl) thiourea) (OPPT), under an irradiation of 100 mW cm-2. The electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, UV-vis absorption spectroscopy, differential scanning calorimetry, and FTIR spectroscopy data of such gel polymer electrolytes favoured the PCE order of the additives used in DSSCs. The improvement in the DSSC performance with symmetrical thioureas having electron-rich atoms was practically attributed to the reduction of back electron transfer, dye regeneration, and hole transport.