A Mechanoresponsive Phase-Changing Electrolyte Enables Fabrication of High-Output Solid-State Photobioelectrochemical Devices from Pigment-Protein Multilayers

Ravi, Sai Kishore, Swainsbury, David J.K., Singh, Varun Kumar, Ngeow, Yoke Keng, Jones, Michael R. and Tan, Swee Ching (2018) A Mechanoresponsive Phase-Changing Electrolyte Enables Fabrication of High-Output Solid-State Photobioelectrochemical Devices from Pigment-Protein Multilayers. Advanced Materials, 30 (5). ISSN 0935-9648

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Abstract

Exploitation of natural photovoltaic reaction center pigment proteins in biohybrid architectures for solar energy harvesting is attractive due to their global abundance, environmental compatibility, and near-unity quantum efficiencies. However, it is challenging to achieve high photocurrents in a device setup due to limitations imposed by low light absorbance by protein monolayers and/or slow long-range diffusion of liquid-phase charge carriers. In an attempt to enhance the photocurrent density achievable by pigment proteins, here, an alternative solid-state device architecture enabled by a mechanoresponsive gel electrolyte that can be applied under nondenaturing conditions is demonstrated. The phase-changing electrolyte gel provides a pervading biocompatible interface for charge conduction through highly absorbing protein multilayers that are fabricated in a simple fashion. Assembled devices exhibit enhanced current stability and a maximal photoresponse of ≈860 µA cm−2, a fivefold improvement over the best previous comparable devices under standard illumination conditions. Photocurrent generation is enhanced by directional energy transfer through extended layers of light-harvesting complexes, mimicking the modular antenna/transducer architecture of natural photosystems, and by metastable radical pair formation when photovoltaic reaction centers are embedded throughout light-harvesting regions of the device.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding Information: D.J.K.S and M.R.J acknowledge support from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council of the UK (project BB/I022570/1). S.K.R. and S.C.T. acknowledge the financial support from MOE AcRF 1 (R-284-000-134-112 and R-284-000-129-133), and acknowledge Janice Tan and Sue Li Chan of Anton Paar Singapore Pte. Ltd for their support on the rheological measurements. Publisher Copyright: © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
Uncontrolled Keywords: bio-photovoltaics,mechanoresponsive gels,photosynthetic reaction centers,solid-state solar cells,materials science(all),mechanics of materials,mechanical engineering,sdg 7 - affordable and clean energy ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2500
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Biological Sciences
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 17 Aug 2022 12:31
Last Modified: 24 Sep 2022 07:04
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/87362
DOI: 10.1002/adma.201704073

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