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How mobile are dye adsorbates and acetonitrile molecules on the surface of TiO2 nanoparticles? A quasi-elastic neutron scattering study

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Title: How mobile are dye adsorbates and acetonitrile molecules on the surface of TiO2 nanoparticles? A quasi-elastic neutron scattering study
Authors: Barnes, PRF
Vaissier, V
Garcia Sakai,, V
Li, X
Cabral, J
Nelson, J
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Motions of molecules adsorbed to surfaces may control the rate of charge transport within monolayers in systems such as dye sensitized solar cells. We used quasi-elastic neutron scattering (QENS) to evaluate the possible dynamics of two small dye moieties, isonicotinic acid (INA) and bis-isonicotinic acid (BINA), attached to TiO2 nanoparticles via carboxylate groups. The scattering data indicate that moieties are immobile and do not rotate around the anchoring groups on timescales between around 10 ps and a few ns (corresponding to the instrumental range). This gives an upper limit for the rate at which conformational fluctuations can assist charge transport between anchored molecules. Our observations suggest that if the conformation of larger dye molecules varies with time, it does so on longer timescales and/or in parts of the molecule which are not directly connected to the anchoring group. The QENS measurements also indicate that several layers of acetonitrile solvent molecules are immobilized at the interface with the TiO2 on the measurement time scale, in reasonable agreement with recent classical molecular dynamics results.
Issue Date: 19-Dec-2016
Date of Acceptance: 22-Nov-2016
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/42719
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep39253
ISSN: 2045-2322
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Journal / Book Title: Scientific Reports
Volume: 6
Copyright Statement: © The Author(s) 2016. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Sponsor/Funder: Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (E
Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC)
Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC)
Funder's Grant Number: EP/G031088/1
EP/J002305/1
EP/K010298/1
Keywords: Science & Technology
Multidisciplinary Sciences
Science & Technology - Other Topics
SENSITIZED SOLAR-CELLS
REORGANIZATION ENERGY
ELECTRON-TRANSFER
CHARGE-TRANSFER
DYNAMICS
SPECTROSCOPY
LIQUID
FILMS
EFFICIENCY
DIFFUSION
Publication Status: Published
Article Number: 39253
Appears in Collections:Physics
Chemistry
Experimental Solid State
Faculty of Natural Sciences



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