External quantum efficiency in solar cells based on junctions between PbSe quantum dots (QDs) and thin ZnO films is increased by replacing the ZnO films with a vertically oriented array of single-crystalline ZnO nanowires, and infiltrating this array with colloidal QDs. When illuminated with 100 mW/ cm2 of simulated solar light, QD-nanowire solar cells exhibited power conversion efficiencies approaching 2%, approximately three times higher than that achieved with thin-film ZnO devices constructed with the same amount of QDs. Significant photocurrent and power conversion improvement with increasing nanowire length is consistent with higher exciton and charge collection efficiencies.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the NSF under the NIRT program (Grant No. CBET-0506672). Parts of this work was carried out in (i) the Institute of Technology (IT) Nanofabrication Center, which receives partial support from the NSF through the NNIN program and (ii) IT Characterization Facility, which has received capital equipment funding from the NSF through the MRSEC program.
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