Chemical Papers

, Volume 72, Issue 7, pp 1651–1667 | Cite as

Preparation of polypyrrole/multi-walled carbon nanotube hybrids by electropolymerization combined with a coating method for counter electrodes in dye-sensitized solar cells

  • Jaroslav KuličekEmail author
  • Pavol Gemeiner
  • Mária Omastová
  • Matej Mičušík
Original Paper


In this work, multi-wall carbon nanotubes coated with polypyrrole (PPy/MWCNT) have been used as counter electrode (CE) materials for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). PPy was deposited onto fluorine-doped tin-oxide-coated glass by electrochemical polymerization of pyrrole. Three surfactants were used in the preparation of the hybrids: cationic cetyltrimethylammonium bromide, anionic sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonate (DBSNa), and non-ionic polyoxyethylene sorbitan monolaurate (Tween20). The morphologies of the PPy and PPy/MWCNT hybrids were investigated using scanning electron spectroscopy. Chemical composition of the prepared CEs was determined by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and Fourier-transformed infrared spectroscopy. The catalytic activity of the PPy and PPy/MWCNT layers was evaluated using cyclic voltammetry, and the photovoltaic properties of DSSCs with PPy and PPy/MWCNT CEs were characterized using IV measurements. PPy/MWCNT samples that were prepared by electrochemical polymerization showed the best results when the anionic surfactant DBSNa was used during polymerization. The photoelectric conversion efficiency of PPy/MWCNT prepared by electrochemical polymerization was 2.9%, which was 59% of that of Pt CE (4.9%).


Dye-sensitized solar cell Counter electrode Polypyrrole Multi-walled carbon nanotubes Electrochemical deposition 



This work was supported by the Slovak Grant Agency, projects VEGA 1/0900/16 and VEGA 2/0010/18, bilateral projects SAS-TÜBITAK JRP 2014/2, project KONNECT, Korea V4 PLL and COST project MP 1307 and by the STU Grant scheme for Support of Excellent Teams of Young Researchers.

Supplementary material

11696_2018_476_MOESM1_ESM.docx (14 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 13 kb)


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Copyright information

© Institute of Chemistry, Slovak Academy of Sciences 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Polymer Institute, Slovak Academy of SciencesBratislavaSlovakia
  2. 2.Department of Printing Arts Technology and PhotochemistryFaculty of Chemical and Food Technology STU in BratislavaBratislavaSlovakia

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