Hybrid ZnO Electron Transport Layer by Down Conversion Complexes for Dual Improvements of Photovoltaic and Stable Performances in Polymer Solar Cells

Bu, F., Shen, W., Zhang, X., Wang, Y., Belfiore, LA., Tang, J.
Nanomaterials (Basel)

Abstract

Polymer solar cells (PSCs) have shown excellent photovoltaic performance, however, extending the spectral response range to the ultraviolet (UV) region and enhancing the UV light stability remain two challenges to overcome in the development of PSCs. Lanthanide down-conversion materials can absorb the UV light and re-emit it at the visible region that matches well with the absorption of the active layer material PTB7-Th (poly[[2,6'-4,8-di(5-ethylhexylthienyl)benzo[1,2-b;3,3-b]dithiophene][3-fluoro-2[(2-ethylhexyl)carbony]thieno[3,4-b]thiophenediyl]]) and PBDB-T-2F, thus helping to enhance the photovoltaic performance and UV light stability of PSCs. In this research, a down-conversion material Eu(TTA)3phen (ETP) is introduced into the cathode transport layer (ZnO) in PSCs to manipulate its nanostructure morphology for its application in hyperfine structure of PSCs. The device based on the ZnO/ETP electron transport layer can obtain power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of 9.22% (PTB7-Th-PC71BM ([6,6]-phenylC71-butyric acid methyl ester) device) and 13.12% (PBDB-T-2F-IT-4F device), respectively. Besides, in the research on PTB7-Th-PC71BM device, the stability of the device based on ZnO/ETP layer is prolonged by 70% compared with the ZnO device. The results suggest that the ZnO/ETP layer plays the role of enhanced photovoltaic performance and prolonged device stability, as well as reducing photo-loss and UV degradation for PSCs.

DOI: 10.3390/nano10010080