The light harvesting efficiency of dye-sensitized photoelectrodes was enhanced by coupling a TiO2 photonic crystal layer to a conventional film of TiO2 nanoparticles. In addition to acting as a dielectric mirror, the inverse opal photonic crystal caused a significant change in dye absorbance which depended on the position of the stop band. Absorbance was suppressed at wavelengths shorter than the stop band maximum and was enhanced at longer wavelengths. This effect arises from the slow group velocity of light in the vicinity of the stop band, and the consequent localization of light intensity in the voids (to the blue) or in the dye-sensitized TiO2 (to the red) portions of the photonic crystal. By coupling a photonic crystal to a film of TiO2 nanoparticles, the short circuit photocurrent efficiency across the visible spectrum (400-750 nm) could be increased by about 26%, relative to an ordinary dye-sensitized nanocrystalline TiO2 photoelectrode.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry