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C5.05 - Small Molecule Organic Photovoltaic Cells: Interdigitated Nanostructures, Molecular Templates, and Self-Assembly 
April 22, 2014   3:30pm - 4:00pm

Organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells have attracted great interests in recent years due to their potential to offer low cost solar energy conversion. There have been many great advances in developing new materials and new device architectures for OPV applications, and power conversion efficiencies exceeding 10% have now been reported. In this talk, I will present some of our recent work on improving the efficiency of vacuum-deposited small molecule based OPV cells. First, we have synthesized vertically aligned molecular nanorod arrays using the high vacuum process of oblique angle deposition. An interdigitated donor-acceptor heterojunction was subsequently formed by filling the gaps between the donor molecular nanorods with the fullerene acceptor, and such controlled bulk heterojunction exhibited twice the efficiency of a bilayer heterojunction from the same material system. Next, we show that the use of a pentacene polycrystalline template can strongly influence the growth of the infrared-absoring lead phthalocyanine molecules, leading to stronger infrared absorption and enhanced quantum efficiency. In collaboration with Jian Li at Arizona State University, we show that the use of a PEDOT:PSS/tetracene bilayer on the ITO anode also drastically improves the quantum efficiency of zinc phthalocyanine-based OPV devices. Finally, in collaboration with Ronald Castellano at the University of Florida, we have designed a new self-assembly approach to realizing a controlled bulk heterojunction structure by relying on hydrogen-bonding mediated supramolecular assembly. In the preliminary work, we have shown two to three times efficiency improvement for quaterthiophene derivatives compared to control devices.

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Keynote Address
Panel Discussion - Different Approaches to Commercializing Materials Research
Business Challenges to Starting a Materials-Based Company
Fred Kavli Distinguished Lectureship in Nanoscience
Application of In-situ X-ray Absorption, Emission and Powder Diffraction Studies in Nanomaterials Research - From the Design of an In-situ Experiment to Data Analysis