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Polymers 2017, 9(9), 456; doi:10.3390/polym9090456

Thermally Stable Bulk Heterojunction Prepared by Sequential Deposition of Nanostructured Polymer and Fullerene

Department of Chemistry and Nano Science, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 03760, Korea
Department of Chemical and Bimolecular Engineering, Yonsei University, Seoul 03722, Korea
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 August 2017 / Revised: 7 September 2017 / Accepted: 12 September 2017 / Published: 17 September 2017
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A morphologically-stable polymer/fullerene heterojunction has been prepared by minimizing the intermixing between polymer and fullerene via sequential deposition (SqD) of a polymer and a fullerene solution. A low crystalline conjugated polymer of PCPDTBT (poly[2,6-(4,4-bis-(2-ethylhexyl)-4H-cyclopenta [2,1-b;3,4-b′]dithiophene)-alt-4,7(2,1,3-benzothiadiazole)]) has been utilized for the polymer layer and PC71BM (phenyl-C71-butyric-acid-methyl ester) for the fullerene layer, respectively. Firstly, a nanostructured PCPDTBT bottom layer was developed by utilizing various additives to increase the surface area of the polymer film. The PC71BM solution was prepared by dissolving it in the 1,2-dichloroethane (DCE), exhibiting a lower vapor pressure and slower diffusion into the polymer layer. The deposition of the PC71BM solution on the nanostructured PCPDTBT layer forms an inter-digitated bulk heterojunction (ID-BHJ) with minimized intermixing. The organic photovoltaic (OPV) device utilizing the ID-BHJ photoactive layer exhibits a highly reproducible solar cell performance. In spite of restricted intermixing between the PC71BM and the PCPDTBT, the efficiency of ID-BHJ OPVs (3.36%) is comparable to that of OPVs (3.87%) prepared by the conventional method (deposition of a blended solution of polymer:fullerene). The thermal stability of the ID-BHJ is superior to the bulk heterojunction (BHJ) prepared by the conventional method. The ID-BHJ OPV maintains 70% of its initial efficiency after thermal stress application for twelve days at 80 °C, whereas the conventional BHJ OPV maintains only 40% of its initial efficiency. View Full-Text
Keywords: organic solar cell; sequential deposition; bulk heterojunction; stability organic solar cell; sequential deposition; bulk heterojunction; stability

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Hwang, H.; Lee, H.; Shafian, S.; Lee, W.; Seok, J.; Ryu, K.Y.; Yeol Ryu, D.; Kim, K. Thermally Stable Bulk Heterojunction Prepared by Sequential Deposition of Nanostructured Polymer and Fullerene. Polymers 2017, 9, 456.

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