19 OctPhD DissertationPerformance Enhancement of Organic Solar Cells by Interface Layer Engineering
Performance Enhancement of Organic Solar Cells by Interface Layer Engineering
  • Yuanbao Lin
  • Ph.D. Candidate supervised by Prof. Thomas Anthopoulos
  • Tuesday, October 19, 2021
  • 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Zoom link: https://kaust.zoom.us/j/96003856757
2021-10-19T10:002021-10-19T12:00Asia/RiyadhPerformance Enhancement of Organic Solar Cells by Interface Layer EngineeringZoom link: https://kaust.zoom.us/j/96003856757Yuanbao Linyuanbao.lin@kaust.edu.sa

Zoom link: https://kaust.zoom.us/j/96003856757

ABSTRACT: Organic photovoltaics (OPVs) have received tremendous attention in recent years due to their numerous attractive attributes such as, the potential for high power conversion efficiency (PCE), mechanical flexibility, semitransparency, and the potential for large-scale manufacturing via low-cost techniques such as roll-to-roll printing processes. To date, the record PCE values for bulk-heterojunction (BHJ) OPVs exceed 18% for single-junction cells thanks to the rapid development of donors and acceptors materials for active layer. However, the progress of hole-transporting layer (HTL) systems, which is a key device component to reduce the additional performance losses of OPVs, has been limited with only a handful of materials available like PEDOT:PSS and MoOX. In this thesis, I introduce serval materials to unitize as hole-selective contact in high-performance OPVs. 

Firstly, the application of liquid-exfoliated two-dimensional (2D) transition metal disulfides (TMDs) is demonstrated as the HTLs in OPVs. The solution processing of few-layer WS2 suspensions was directly spun onto transparent ITO electrodes yield solar cells with superior PCE than devices based on PEDOT:PSS. Based on PM6:Y6:PC71BM BHJ layer, the cells with WS2 HTL exhibit the highest PCE of 17% thanks to the favorable photonic structure and reduced bimolecular recombination losses in WS2-based cells. 

Next, the self-assembled monolayer (SAM) namely 2PACz is utilized as hole-selective contact directly onto the ITO anode. The 2PACz modifies the work function of ITO while simultaneously affecting the BHJ layers morphology deposited atop. This ITO-2PACz anode is utilized in OPV with PM6:BTP-eC9:PC71BM, showing a remarkable PCE of 18.0%. The enhanced performance is attributed to reduced contact-resistance, lower bimolecular recombination losses, and improved charge transport within the BHJ layer. Critically, the 2PACz-based OPVs show a dramatically improved operational stability when compared with PEDOT:PSS-based cells. 

The previously 2PACz SAM was functionalized with bromo- functional group, namely Br-2PACz, which is investigated as hole-extracting interlayers in OPVs. The highest occupied molecular orbital (HOMO) energy of Br-2PACz was measured at -6.01 eV, and significant changes the work function of ITO electrodes upon chemical functionalization. OPV cells based on PM6:BTP-eC9:PC71BM using ITO/Br-2PACz anodes exhibit a maximum PCE of 18.4%, outperforming devices with ITO/PEDOT:PSS (17.5%), resulting from lower interface resistance, improved hole transport/extraction, lower trap-assisted recombination, and longer carrier lifetimes.


  • Yuanbao Lin
  • yuanbao.lin@kaust.edu.sa