Photosystem II Based Photoelectrochemical Cell

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Zolkiewski, Mark




The need for renewable sources of electrical power continues to grow around the globe, with solar energy at the forefront. This thesis concerns the assembly and testing of a photoelectrochemical cell that utilizes photosynthetic proteins found in plants to capture solar energy and generate electricity. Photosystem II, plastoquinone and thylakoid lipids were extracted from spinach leaves for use in the photocell. An ω-Hydroxythiol SAM on Au electrode was used as the anode to receive electrons from cytochrome c in solution. A platinum on carbon electrode was used as the cathode, with an anion exchange membrane to avoid short circuits forming between the electrodes. The photocell was tested under a variety of conditions and the highest photocurrent produced was 11.5 μA/cm2 at an applied voltage of 750 mV.




Carleton University

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