Array fabrication and photoelectrochemical properties of Sn-doped vertically oriented hematite nanorods for solar cells

Chunting Liu
Hongzhou Dong
Qian Zhang
Qiong Sun
Liyan Yu
Liyan Yu

Abstract

We report on the synthesis and characterization of Sn-doped hematite nanorods as well as their implementation as the photoanode for solar cells. Hematite nanorods are prepared on fluorine-doped tin oxide (FTO) substrates by a hydrothermal method, followed by a two-step sintering in air, and Sn-doping is achieved by adding SnCl4 into the mixture solution during the hydrothermal process. In comparison to un-doped hematite, Sn-doped hematite nanorods exhibit a higher array growth density along the direction [110], which indicates that the Sn-doping can facilitate the vertically oriented growth of the hematite nanorod arrays; moreover, the Sn-doping can result in enhanced photocurrent density and photoelectrical efficiency due to the improved carrier density. These new findings will provide new information to enhance the photoelectrochemical characteristics of hematite, one of the best potential photoanode materials.