Wolf, Jannic Sebastian; Babics, Maxime; Wang, Kai; Saleem, Qasim; Liang, Ru-Ze; Hansen, Michael Ryan; Beaujuge, Pierre(Chemistry of Materials, American Chemical Society (ACS), 2016-01-22)[Article]
We report on the synthesis, material properties and BHJ solar cell characteristics of a set of π-conjugated small-molecule (SM) donors composed of benzo[1,2-b:4,5-b′]dithiophene (BDT) and pyrido[3,4-b]pyrazine (PP) units – examining the perspectives of alkyl-substituted PP acceptor motifs in SM designs. In these systems (SM1-4), both the type of side chains derived from the PP motifs and the presence of ring-substituents on BDT critically impact (i) molecular packing, and (ii) thin-film morphologies and charge transport in BHJ solar cells. With the appropriate side-chain pattern, the ring-substituted analogue SM4 stands out: achieving efficiencies of ca. 6.5% with PC71BM, and fine-scale morphologies comparable to those obtained with some of the best-performing polymer donors in BHJ solar cells. 1H-1H DQ-SQ NMR analyses are used to examine the distinct self-assembly pattern of SM4, expected to factor into the development of the BHJ morphology.
Wang, Kai; Firdaus, Yuliar; Babics, Maxime; Cruciani, Federico; Saleem, Qasim; El Labban, Abdulrahman; Alamoudi, Maha; Marszalek, Tomasz; Pisula, Wojciech; Laquai, Frédéric; Beaujuge, Pierre(Chemistry of Materials, American Chemical Society (ACS), 2016-02-25)[Article]
Molecular acceptors are promising alternatives to fullerenes (e.g. PC61/71BM) in the fabrication of high-efficiency bulk-heterojunction (BHJ) solar cells. While solution-processed polymer-fullerene BHJ devices have recently met the 10% efficiency threshold, molecular acceptors have yet to prove comparably efficient with polymer donors. At this point in time, it is important to forge a better understanding of the design parameters that directly impact small-molecule (SM) acceptor performance in BHJ solar cells. In this report, we show that 2-(benzo[c][1,2,5]thiadiazol-4-ylmethylene)malononitrile (BM)-terminated SM acceptors can achieve efficiencies as high as 5.3% in BHJ solar cells with the polymer donor PCE10. Through systematic device optimization and characterization studies, we find that the nonfull-erene analogues (FBM, CBM and CDTBM) all perform comparably well, independent of the molecular structure and electronics of the π-bridge that links the two electron-deficient BM end groups. With estimated electron affinities within range of those of common fullerenes (4.0-4.3 eV), and a wider range of ionization potentials (6.2-5.6 eV), the SM acceptors absorb in the visible spectrum and effectively contribute to the BHJ device photocurrent. BM-substituted SM acceptors are promising alterna-tives to fullerenes in solution-processed BHJ solar cells.
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