Factors influencing output stability of Cd-chalcogenide/polysulfide photoelectrochemical cells

Gary Hodes, Joost Manassen, David Cahen

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The stability of CdSe and CdS photoanodes in polysulfide electrolytes has been investigated. Both CdSe and CdS were found to deactivate to a similar extent, indicating that this deactivation was due to a physical change (reduction of crystallinity) at the semiconductor surface rather than a chemical change. The real surface area of the photoelectrodes was shown to be of great importance in determining the degree of stability, due to its influence on the real photocurrent density. The ratio of [S] to [S2-] in the electrolyte was likewise shown to have a very strong influence on the stability, and was correlated with the rate of dissolution of photogenerated sulfur away from the semiconductor surface which is the rate determining step under most conditions. Finally, the results of long-term lifetime tests were given, indicating an obtainable stability for CdSe photoanodes measured in years.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)373-381
Number of pages9
JournalSolar Energy Materials
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes


David Cahen thanks Bell Labs. for hospitality during a stay when some of the experiments reported here, were performed. We thank A. Heller, B. Miller and M. Robbins for providing pressed pellet electrodes. This work was supported by the U.S.-Israel Binational Science Foundation, Jerusalem, Israel; and by Ormat Turbines Ltd.

FundersFunder number
Ormat Turbines Ltd
U.S.-Israel Binational Science Foundation


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