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Proceedings Paper

Investigations of the kinetics of charge-transfer reactions in photoelectrochemical solar cells
Author(s): Ruediger Memming; Rolf Reineke; Dieter Meissner
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Paper Abstract

Photoelectrochemical solar cells can be made on the basis of majority and minority carrier devices. Since the forward dark current limits the photovoltage, the kinetics of the charge transfer across the interface has been studied in detail. It is shown that the exchange current, and consequently the forward current, can be kinetically or diffusion controlled, depending on the charge transfer rate at the interface. In the case of a majority carrier device, the forward current is usually much smaller than that predicted from the thermionic emission model, leading to higher photovoltages in a photoelectrochemical cell. It is further shown that the forward current of a minority carrier device is mainly governed by the injection and recombination of minority carriers. Here the conversion efficiency is limited by the quality of the semiconductor, similarly as in pure solid state devices.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 December 1992
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 1729, Optical Materials Technology for Energy Efficiency and Solar Energy Conversion XI: Photovoltaics, Photochemistry, Photoelectrochemistry, (9 December 1992); doi: 10.1117/12.130582
Show Author Affiliations
Ruediger Memming, Institut fuer Solarenergieforschung GmbH (Germany)
Rolf Reineke, Institut fuer Solarenergieforschung GmbH (Germany)
Dieter Meissner, Institut fuer Solarenergieforschung GmbH (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1729:
Optical Materials Technology for Energy Efficiency and Solar Energy Conversion XI: Photovoltaics, Photochemistry, Photoelectrochemistry

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