Tuning materials packing in the photoanode films through a simple cold isostatic pressing (CIP) post-treatment allows highly efficient charge transport and a dramatically retarded recombination that are witnessed by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) studies. The pressing post-treatment produces densely packed TiO
nanoparticle film with fewer relatively large vacancies and better inter-contacts between neighbouring nanoparticles while sustaining the specific surface area and pore size distribution of the mesoporous film. Characterisations of the sensitised photoanodes reveal that the prompted electron transport greatly contributes to a significant enhancement on overall solar energy conversion efficiency (PCE) by up to 11.7%. The demonstrated advantages from the simple but innovative approach are not limited to dye-sensitised solar cell applications and can benefit broad range developments for highly efficient devices, sensors and reactors using mesoporous semiconductor nanoparticle electrode films.
Keywords: electron transport, mesoporous, semiconductor electrode, titanium dioxide, film compression.