Two di-ureasils incorporating oxyethylene segments with average molecular weights Y = 600 and 900 g mol−1, prepared by the sol-gel method, and doped with the ionic liquid 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride ([Bmim]Cl) and lithium tetrafluoroborate (LiBF4) salt were prepared. The as-obtained films are translucent, flexible, and hydrophobic, and have a low level of nanoscale surface roughness. The ionic conductivity values exhibited by an optimized sample are 8.10 × 10−5 and 2.8 × 10−4 S cm−1 at room temperature and 55 °C, respectively. The main goal of the work was to employ the electrolytes in prototype electrochromic devices (ECDs) with the [glass/a-IZO/a-WO3/d-U(Y)LiBF4-[Bmim]Cl/c-NiO/a-IZO/glass], noted as ECD1 for Y = 600 and ECD2 for Y = 900, where a-WO3 and c-NiO stand for amorphous tungsten oxide and crystalline nickel oxide, respectively. At 555 nm the ECD1 device exhibited the highest coloration efficiency for coloring (CEin = −420.621 cm2·C−1), the highest optical density value (∆(OD) = 0.13) and good cycling stability. In this article, the results of a preliminary evaluation of hybrid electrolytes, produced by a sol-gel process, as multi-functional components in prototype electrochromic devices are reported.
- 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride
- di-ureasil electrolytes
- electrochromic devices
- lithium tetrafluoroborate