Effect of the thickness of the Ru-coating on a counter electrode on the performance of a dye-sensitized solar cell

Jeungjo Han, Kicheon Yoo, Min Jae Ko, Byungkwan Yu, Yunyoung Noh, Ohsung Song

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A ruthenium (Ru) catalytic layer was assessed as the counter electrode (CE) in dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) by examining the effect of the Ru thickness on the DSSC performance. Ru films with different thicknesses (34, 46, 69 and 90 nm) were deposited on glass/fluorine-doped tin oxide (FTO) substrates as the CE by atomic layer deposition (ALD) at 250 °C using RuDi as the precursor and O 2 as the reaction gas. Finally, a 0.45 cm 2 DSSC of glass/FTO/TiO 2/dye(N719)/electrolyte(C6DMII, GSCN)/Ru CE structure was prepared. The properties of the DSSCs were examined by field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), four-point-probe, cyclic voltammetry (CV), electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), current-voltage (I-V), incident photon-to-current conversion efficiency (IPCE), and dark current measurements. FESEM showed that the crystallized Ru films had been deposited quite uniformly and conformally on the glass/FTO surface. The sheet resistance of the Ru film decreased with increasing Ru thickness. CV profiling revealed an increase in catalytic activity with increasing film thickness. The charge transfer resistance at the interface between the Ru-coated CE and electrolyte decreased with increasing Ru thickness. I-V profiling showed that the energy conversion efficiency was increased up to 3.40 % by increasing the Ru thickness. Moreover, the IPCE and dark current results showed the efficiency of the Ru-coated CE was comparable to that of a conventional platinum (Pt) CE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-108
Number of pages4
JournalMetals and Materials International
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2012


  • deposition
  • electrical conductivity
  • electrochemistry
  • scanning electron microscopy (SEM)
  • solar cells


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