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Preparation of Perovskite Quantum Dots from Discarded Lead–Acid Battery

Preparation of Perovskite Quantum Dots from Discarded Lead–Acid Battery

Researchers from National Taipei University of Technology developed perovskite CsPbBr3 quantum dot using lead scrap from lead storage batteries

Organometallic halide perovskite materials have superior optical and electrical properties such as fast diffusion speed of the carrier current, long diffusion distance, and high absorption coefficient that offers excellent absorption in the entire visible light region. Moreover, these materials can fully absorb sunlight during operation and reduce energy loss in the photoelectric conversion process. They also can be excited by light, owing to a low exciton binding energy. Both organic and inorganic hybrid perovskites demonstrate excellent performance in solar cells, light-emitting diodes (LEDs), and optoelectronic devices.

Now, a team of researchers from National Taipei University of Technology, Da-Yeh University, China University of Science and Technology, University of Science and Technology Beijing, Ming Chi University of Technology, National Chiao Tung University, and Yuan Ze University used waste recovered lead oxide from storage batteries to make perovskite CsPbBr3-QDs with different ratios of lead oxide (PbO) and recycled lead dioxide (PbO2). The team used high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) to observe the perovskite CsPbBr3-QDs’ structural characteristics and quantum dot (QD) feature. The average size of CsPbBr3-QD particles was 10–15 nanometers (nm). The XRD and HRTEM results revealed that the CsPbBr3-QD (PbO(0%):PbO2(100%)) film has the higher crystal quality. The photoluminescence quantum yield (PLQY) of all the colloidal CsPbBr3-QDs was estimated to be 40%.

According to the researchers, the current lead recycling can achieve cost savings compared with the price of pure Pb or PbO as opposed to recycled Pb or PbO. However, waste lead recovered from lead storage batteries may exhibit a coarse accumulation of large grains in the production process. Therefore, the concentration and grain size should be optimized to improve the quantum yield through a well-designed purification process. Moreover, it is challenging to dissolve PbO2 in oleic acid and therefore, a small number of PbO2 particles remain in the PbO/PbO2 mixture when the mixture is employed and the PbO2 content increases. This in turn leads to aggregation of the quantum dots. In further research, the team plans to use acetic acid or sodium hydroxide as a solvent for PbO2 to enhance quantum dot aggregation. The research was published in the journal MDPI Energies on March 22, 2019.