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[en] Herein, a TiO2 nanoparticle/nanorod composite architecture was suggested for improving performance of quantum dot sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs), which was fabricated on transparent conductive glass substrates (FTO) via hydrothermal method followed by spin-coating, and further used as photoanode of QDSSCs. Compared with the TiO2 nanorod photoanode, the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of the QDSSCs with this architecture was obviously improved. The champion efficiency of 4.42% was achieved, showing a 33.5% enhancement in PCE. The improved PCE mainly resulted from the increase of Jsc, which increased from 9.80 (nanorod architecture) to 15.48 mA/cm2 (nanoparticle/nanorod composite architecture). The advantages of the composite structure photoanode consist in the superior light scattering capability, faster electron transport and increased photogenerated electron concentration. - Graphical abstract: In this paper, a TiO2 nanoparticle/nanorod architecture electrode termed as P/R was fabricated and applied as photoanode of QDSSCs. The P/R composite architecture electrodes showed improved photovoltaic performance compared to single crystal TiO2 nanorod arrays. The champion efficiency of 4.42% has been achieved. - Highlights: • A TiO2 nanoparticle/nanorod composite architecture was prepared for QDSSCs. • A suitable thickness of TiO2 nanoparticle layer can enhance PCE effectively. • The highly improved PCE can be mainly attributed to the increase of Jsc.