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Journal of Energy
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 654953, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/654953
Research Article

Natural Pigments from Plants Used as Sensitizers for TiO2 Based Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells

Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi 221005, India

Received 27 June 2013; Accepted 21 September 2013

Academic Editor: Mattheos Santamouris

Copyright © 2013 Reena Kushwaha et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Four natural pigments, extracted from the leaves of teak (Tectona grandis), tamarind (Tamarindus indica), eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus), and the flower of crimson bottle brush (Callistemon citrinus), were used as sensitizers for TiO2 based dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The dyes have shown absorption in broad range of the visible region (400–700 nm) of the solar spectrum and appreciable adsorption onto the semiconductor (TiO2) surface. The DSSCs made using the extracted dyes have shown that the open circuit voltages ( ) varied from 0.430 to 0.610 V and the short circuit photocurrent densities ( ) ranged from 0.11 to 0.29 mA cm−2. The incident photon-to-current conversion efficiencies (IPCE) varied from 12–37%. Among the four dyes studied, the extract obtained from teak has shown the best photosensitization effects in terms of the cell output.