The function of Chalcogenophene in the Cyclomatelated Ring of the Cycloruthenated Dyes applied in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell

The Duy Nguyen, Yen Po Lan, Chun Guey Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Three thiocyanate-free cycloruthenated complexes, DUY24-O, DUY24, and DUY24-Se containing furan, thiophene, and selenophene, respectively, as a part of the cycloruthenated ring, were designed to reveal the function of the chalcogen atom on the physicochemical and photovoltaic performance of the cycloruthenated sensitizers applied in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs). The three sensitizers have a similar molecular size; therefore, the effect of molecular dimensions on their photovoltaic performance can be negligible. NMR data, electron-donating resonance effects, optical properties, and the energy levels of the frontier orbitals reveal that the physical/photovoltaic properties of the three sensitizers were affected significantly by the chalcogen atom on the cyclometalated chalcogenophene ring. The λmax (both in ethanol and adsorbed on TiO2), frontier orbital level, and dye loading of thiophene- and selenophene-containing dyes are very close. Nevertheless, DUY24-Se has a higher molar absorption coefficient compared to DUY24; therefore, the DSC based on DUY24-Se has higher efficiency (8.4% under AM1.5 G one-sun and 26% under T5-light at ca. 6000 lux) than that sensitized with the DUY24 dye. These efficiencies are also higher than those (7.9 and 21.6%, respectively) of the cell dyed with N719, fabricated using the same conditions. The better performance of the device sensitized with DUY24-Se compared to DUY24-based cells suggests that selenophene is as good as (or even better than) thiophene to be a part of the cyclometalated ring for thiocyanate-free cycloruthenated sensitizers applied in DSCs. Furan-containing DUY24-O has much worse photovoltaic performance compared to the other two dyes. This is not only because DUY24-O has the shortest λmax, the lowest molar absorption coefficient, and the highest HOMO level but also the lowest dye loading (because of the strong interaction between the oxygen in furan and TiO2, the array of DUY24-O occupies more surface when adsorbed on TiO2) and the fastest charge recombination. The physicochemical and photovoltaic properties as well as the adsorption behavior of the dye on the TiO2 anode for the cycloruthenated sensitizers affected significantly by the chalcogen atom of the chalcogenophene on the cyclometalated ring provide a new strategy to design high-efficiency NCS-free cyclometalated sensitizers for DSCs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11328-11337
Number of pages10
JournalInorganic Chemistry
Issue number15
StatePublished - 2 Aug 2021


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