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Title: Ternary behavior and systematic nanoscale manipulation of domain structures in P3HT/PCBM/P3HT-b-PEO films

Abstract

Nanophase separation plays a critical role in the performance of donor-acceptor based organic photovoltaic (OPV) devices. Although post-fabrication annealing is often used to enhance OPV efficiency, the ability to exert precise control over phase separated domains and connectivity remains elusive. In this work, we use a diblock copolymer to systematically manipulate the domain sizes of an organic solar cell active layer at the nanoscale. More specifically, a poly(3-hexylthiophene)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (P3HT-b-PEO) diblock copolymer with a low polydispersity index (PDI = 1.3) is added to a binary blend of P3HT and 6,6-phenyl C{sub 61}-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) at different concentrations (0-20 wt%). Energy-filtered TEM (EFTEM) results suggest systematic changes of P3HT distribution as a function of block copolymer compatibilizer concentration and thermal annealing. X-ray scattering and microscopy techniques are used to show that prior to annealing, active layer domain sizes do not change substantially as compatibilizer is added; however after thermal annealing, the domain sizes are significantly reduced as the amount of P3HT-b-PEO compatibilizer increases. The impact of compatibilizer is further rationalized through quantum density functional theory calculations. Overall, this work demonstrates the possibility of block copolymers to systematically manipulate the nanoscale domain-structure of blends used for organic photovoltaic devices. Ifmore » coupled with efficient charge transport and collection (through judicious choice of block copolymer type and composition), this approach may contribute to further optimization of OPV devices.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. ORNL
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1043304
DOE Contract Number:  
DE-AC05-00OR22725
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Journal of Materials Chemistry
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 22; Journal Issue: 26; Journal ID: ISSN 0959-9428
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; ANNEALING; BEHAVIOR; CHARGE TRANSPORT; CONTROL; COPOLYMERS; DENSITY; DOMAIN STRUCTURE; EFFICIENCY; ESTERS; FILMS; FUNCTIONALS; FUNCTIONS; LAYERS; MICROSCOPY; OPTIMIZATION; ORGANIC SOLAR CELLS; PERFORMANCE; SCATTERING

Citation Formats

Chen, Jihua, Yu, Xiang, Hong, Kunlun, Messman, Jamie M, Pickel, Deanna L, Xiao, Kai, Dadmun, Mark D, Mays, Jimmy, Rondinone, Adam Justin, Sumpter, Bobby, and Kilbey, II, S Michael. Ternary behavior and systematic nanoscale manipulation of domain structures in P3HT/PCBM/P3HT-b-PEO films. United States: N. p., 2012. Web. doi:10.1039/c2jm31124k.
Chen, Jihua, Yu, Xiang, Hong, Kunlun, Messman, Jamie M, Pickel, Deanna L, Xiao, Kai, Dadmun, Mark D, Mays, Jimmy, Rondinone, Adam Justin, Sumpter, Bobby, & Kilbey, II, S Michael. Ternary behavior and systematic nanoscale manipulation of domain structures in P3HT/PCBM/P3HT-b-PEO films. United States. doi:10.1039/c2jm31124k.
Chen, Jihua, Yu, Xiang, Hong, Kunlun, Messman, Jamie M, Pickel, Deanna L, Xiao, Kai, Dadmun, Mark D, Mays, Jimmy, Rondinone, Adam Justin, Sumpter, Bobby, and Kilbey, II, S Michael. Sun . "Ternary behavior and systematic nanoscale manipulation of domain structures in P3HT/PCBM/P3HT-b-PEO films". United States. doi:10.1039/c2jm31124k.
@article{osti_1043304,
title = {Ternary behavior and systematic nanoscale manipulation of domain structures in P3HT/PCBM/P3HT-b-PEO films},
author = {Chen, Jihua and Yu, Xiang and Hong, Kunlun and Messman, Jamie M and Pickel, Deanna L and Xiao, Kai and Dadmun, Mark D and Mays, Jimmy and Rondinone, Adam Justin and Sumpter, Bobby and Kilbey, II, S Michael},
abstractNote = {Nanophase separation plays a critical role in the performance of donor-acceptor based organic photovoltaic (OPV) devices. Although post-fabrication annealing is often used to enhance OPV efficiency, the ability to exert precise control over phase separated domains and connectivity remains elusive. In this work, we use a diblock copolymer to systematically manipulate the domain sizes of an organic solar cell active layer at the nanoscale. More specifically, a poly(3-hexylthiophene)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (P3HT-b-PEO) diblock copolymer with a low polydispersity index (PDI = 1.3) is added to a binary blend of P3HT and 6,6-phenyl C{sub 61}-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) at different concentrations (0-20 wt%). Energy-filtered TEM (EFTEM) results suggest systematic changes of P3HT distribution as a function of block copolymer compatibilizer concentration and thermal annealing. X-ray scattering and microscopy techniques are used to show that prior to annealing, active layer domain sizes do not change substantially as compatibilizer is added; however after thermal annealing, the domain sizes are significantly reduced as the amount of P3HT-b-PEO compatibilizer increases. The impact of compatibilizer is further rationalized through quantum density functional theory calculations. Overall, this work demonstrates the possibility of block copolymers to systematically manipulate the nanoscale domain-structure of blends used for organic photovoltaic devices. If coupled with efficient charge transport and collection (through judicious choice of block copolymer type and composition), this approach may contribute to further optimization of OPV devices.},
doi = {10.1039/c2jm31124k},
journal = {Journal of Materials Chemistry},
issn = {0959-9428},
number = 26,
volume = 22,
place = {United States},
year = {2012},
month = {1}
}