Quantum dot solar cells: Hole transfer as a limiting factor in boosting the photoconversion efficiency

Prashant V. Kamat, Jeffrey A. Christians, James G. Radich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


Semiconductor nanostructures are attractive for designing low-cost solar cells with tunable photoresponse. The recent advances in size- and shape-selective synthesis have enabled the design of quantum dot solar cells with photoconversion efficiencies greater than 5%. To make them competitive with other existing thin film or polycrystalline photovoltaic technologies, it is important to overcome kinetic barriers for charge transfer at semiconductor interfaces. This feature article focuses on the limitations imposed by slow hole transfer in improving solar cell performance and its role in the stability of metal chalcogenide solar cells. Strategies to improve the rate of hole transfer through surface-modified redox relays offer new opportunities to overcome the hole-transfer limitation. The mechanistic and kinetic aspects of hole transfer in quantum dot solar cells (QDSCs), nanowire solar cells (NWSCs), and extremely thin absorber (ETA) solar cells are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5716-5725
Number of pages10
Issue number20
StatePublished - May 27 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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