Abstract In this study, diatom frustules were added into TiO 2 paste to prepare a TiO 2 -diatom paste mixture. Spin-coating and high-temperature sintering techniques were then used to fabricate working electrodes for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). Mixing the diatom frustules with the TiO 2 paste improved the light-trapping effect and scattering properties of the incident light in the TiO 2 -diatom working electrodes, thereby enhancing the power conversion efficiency of the DSSCs. In this study, a high-speed centrifugal processing technology and sedimentation-rate separation techniques were first used to obtain the diatom frustules, which were then mixed with the TiO 2 paste at a weight ratio of 1:50; a spin-coating technique was then used to fabricate the working electrodes. Finally, a high-temperature sintering process (500°C) was performed. In this study, optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and a surface profiler and spectrometer were used to analyze the characteristics of the working electrodes. The TiO 2 or TiO 2 -diatom working electrodes were prepared under various spin-coating conditions for fabricating and analyzing the characteristics of the DSSCs. The results indicated that under identical conditions, the power conversion efficiency of the DSSCs was 3.81% when coated three times with a conventional TiO 2 paste, and 5.26% when coated once with the TiO 2 -diatom paste before being coated twice again with the TiO 2 paste, indicating a 38% increase in efficiency.
- Diatom frustules
- Spin coating