Prolonged lifetime of polymer solar cells with amphiphilic monolayers modified cathodes

Bo Wu, Siew Lay Lim, Jun Li, Dongchen Qi, Fei Chen, Xizu Wang, Zhi Kuan Chen

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The short lifetime and low stability of polymer solar cells (PSCs) devices limit their feasibility for commercial use. Modification of the interfacial electron-transport layers (ETL) has been demonstrated as an effective way to enhance power conversion efficiency (PCE) and device stability. In this work, two types of monolayers consisting of amphiphilic molecules (sodium stearate or sodium oleate - a major constituent of “soap”) are introduced as novel ETLs in polymer: PCBM based PSCs. Significant improvement of PCE was demonstrated and an extended operational lifetime by 5–25 times was achieved. We attributed the improved performance to the interface modification by the amphiphilic molecular layers. The amphiphilic interfacial layers established a better contact between the active layer and the cathode by reducing the roughness and forming a compact dipole at the interface, which facilitates charge generation, charge transport to, and charge collection at the electrodes, thereby enhancing the device efficiency and stability. This versatile interface modification approach has shown to be an immediate and promising means to improve the performance of PSCs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)368-374
Number of pages7
JournalOrganic Electronics
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2017


  • Amphiphilic monolayer
  • Electron transporting layer
  • Interfacial layer
  • Operation lifetime
  • Organic solar cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Chemistry (all)
  • Biomaterials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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