Synergetic enhancement of organic solar cell thermal stability by wire bar coating and light processing

Ching Hong Tan, Him Cheng Wong, Zhe Li, David G. Bucknall, James R. Durrant*, João T. Cabral

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


We demonstrate that organic solar cells can exhibit different morphological and performance stability under thermal stress depending upon the processing technique employed, without compromising initial device efficiency. In particular, we investigate benchmark PCDTBT:PC<inf>60</inf>BM solar cells fabricated by wire bar coating (a technique attractive for commercial manufacture) and the more widely employed, lab scale, technique of spin coating. For this system, wire bar deposition results in superior device stability, with lifetime improvements in excess of 20-fold compared to spun cast devices. Neutron reflectivity reveals that the enhanced PC<inf>60</inf>BM segregation to the top interface in the slower, wire bar, casting process is likely responsible for the hindered PC<inf>60</inf>BM nucleation at tens of nm length scale, characterized by atomic force microscopy (AFM), and thus enhanced morphological stability. Modest light exposure of the active layer (at approximately 10 mW cm<sup>-2</sup>), known to reversibly photo-oligomerize fullerenes and thus impart morphological stability, is found to further improve device stability by a factor of 10. The combined effects of wire bar coating and light processing are highly synergetic, resulting in solar cells which are overall 200 times more stable than devices prepared by spin casting without light processing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9551-9558
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry C
Issue number37
Early online date13 Aug 2015
Publication statusPublished - 13 Aug 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Synergetic enhancement of organic solar cell thermal stability by wire bar coating and light processing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this