Mastery over the structures at nano/microscale can effectively tailor the catalytic activity and durability of materials. Herein, three dimension (3D) hierarchical iron diselenide (FeSe2) microspheres have been successfully synthesized via a hot-injection method. The morphologies of building blocks and final products can be simply controlled by the amount and/or the type of alkythiols, from irregular micro/nanoparticles to uniform 3D hierarchical microspheres made of ultrathin nanosheets or rhombus-like nanorods. A formation mechanism has been understood based on the inherent crystal structure of FeSe2 and the selective adsorption of alkythiols. The as-obtained FeSe2 samples were employed as counter electrode (CE) materials in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). Electrochemical characterizations indicated that the 3D hierarchical FeSe2 microspheres composed of ultrathin nanosheets (FeSe2 NSs) exhibited low charge transfer resistance at the electrolyte-electrode interface, high electrocatalytic activity and fast reaction kinetics for the I-/I3- redox reaction. A DSSC with FeSe2 NSs CE achieved a high power conversion efficiency of 8.39% under a simulated solar illumination of 100mWcm-2 (AM 1.5), comparable to that of Pt based devices (8.20%). Moreover, the fast activity onset and relatively long stability demonstrated that the FeSe2 NSs is a promising alternative to Pt in DSSC.
- Counter electrode
- Dye-sensitized solar cells
- Hierarchical microspheres
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Materials Science(all)
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering