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Title: Ordered Nucleation Sites for the Growth of Zinc Oxide Nanofibers

Abstract

Organic photovoltaics (OPVs) offer a promising route to low cost photovoltaic (PV) technology that can be inexpensively manufactured on a large scale for use in power generation and commercial products. Solar power conversion efficiencies of laboratory scale OPV devices have recently reached ~5%; however, projected efficiencies of at least 10% will be required for commercialization. An analogous approach that has arisen recently that can potentially increase efficiencies employs metal oxide semiconductors as the electron acceptor, creating a hybrid organic-inorganic device. This approach offers the advantage that the conduction band of the oxide can be tuned in a systematic way through doping, thus potentially achieving higher photovoltages in the device. Additionally, nanostructures of these materials can be easily grown from precursor solutions, providing a technique to precisely control the nanoscale geometry. This work focuses on using ZnO, which is known to have high electron mobility (>100 cm2/Vs), as the electron acceptor. Nanofibers of ZnO can be grown from precursors such as zinc acetate or zinc nitrate to form arrays of nanofibers into which a conjugated polymer can be intercalated to form a composite PV device. The morphology of the nanofiber array is critical to the performance of the device, but currentmore » methods of nanofiber growth from a flat, polycrystalline nucleation layer allow for little morphological control. To overcome this limitation, we have created ordered arrays of ZnO nucleation sites with controllable size and spacing. Toluene solutions of diblock copolymer micelles with ZnCl2 incorporated into the micellar cores were spin-coated onto glass substrates and etched with an O2 plasma to yield hexagonally ordered arrays of ZnO nanoparticles that functioned as nucleation sites. Changing the concentration of ZnCl2 and the molecular weight and ratio of the diblock copolymer resulted in systematic variation in the size and spacing of the nucleation sites. Thermal anneal treatment provided further modification of the nucleation layer, from which ZnO nanofibers were successfully grown from solution, although at present it is not known if the geometry of the as-grown ZnO nanofibers precisely reflects that of the underlying nucleation layer. This work provides a simple and useful method for potentially controlling the nucleation of ZnO nanofibers to be used in hybrid ZnO/organic nanocomposite PV devices.« less

Authors:
; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
DOESC (USDOE Office of Science (SC) (United States))
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1051810
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Undergraduate Research; Journal Volume: 6
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Wang, J., Ginley, D.S., and Shaheen, S. Ordered Nucleation Sites for the Growth of Zinc Oxide Nanofibers. United States: N. p., 2006. Web.
Wang, J., Ginley, D.S., & Shaheen, S. Ordered Nucleation Sites for the Growth of Zinc Oxide Nanofibers. United States.
Wang, J., Ginley, D.S., and Shaheen, S. Sun . "Ordered Nucleation Sites for the Growth of Zinc Oxide Nanofibers". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1051810.
@article{osti_1051810,
title = {Ordered Nucleation Sites for the Growth of Zinc Oxide Nanofibers},
author = {Wang, J. and Ginley, D.S. and Shaheen, S.},
abstractNote = {Organic photovoltaics (OPVs) offer a promising route to low cost photovoltaic (PV) technology that can be inexpensively manufactured on a large scale for use in power generation and commercial products. Solar power conversion efficiencies of laboratory scale OPV devices have recently reached ~5%; however, projected efficiencies of at least 10% will be required for commercialization. An analogous approach that has arisen recently that can potentially increase efficiencies employs metal oxide semiconductors as the electron acceptor, creating a hybrid organic-inorganic device. This approach offers the advantage that the conduction band of the oxide can be tuned in a systematic way through doping, thus potentially achieving higher photovoltages in the device. Additionally, nanostructures of these materials can be easily grown from precursor solutions, providing a technique to precisely control the nanoscale geometry. This work focuses on using ZnO, which is known to have high electron mobility (>100 cm2/Vs), as the electron acceptor. Nanofibers of ZnO can be grown from precursors such as zinc acetate or zinc nitrate to form arrays of nanofibers into which a conjugated polymer can be intercalated to form a composite PV device. The morphology of the nanofiber array is critical to the performance of the device, but current methods of nanofiber growth from a flat, polycrystalline nucleation layer allow for little morphological control. To overcome this limitation, we have created ordered arrays of ZnO nucleation sites with controllable size and spacing. Toluene solutions of diblock copolymer micelles with ZnCl2 incorporated into the micellar cores were spin-coated onto glass substrates and etched with an O2 plasma to yield hexagonally ordered arrays of ZnO nanoparticles that functioned as nucleation sites. Changing the concentration of ZnCl2 and the molecular weight and ratio of the diblock copolymer resulted in systematic variation in the size and spacing of the nucleation sites. Thermal anneal treatment provided further modification of the nucleation layer, from which ZnO nanofibers were successfully grown from solution, although at present it is not known if the geometry of the as-grown ZnO nanofibers precisely reflects that of the underlying nucleation layer. This work provides a simple and useful method for potentially controlling the nucleation of ZnO nanofibers to be used in hybrid ZnO/organic nanocomposite PV devices.},
doi = {},
journal = {Journal of Undergraduate Research},
number = ,
volume = 6,
place = {United States},
year = {Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2006},
month = {Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2006}
}