Adhesion properties of inverted polymer solarcells: Processing and film structure parameters

Stephanie R. Dupont, Eszter Voroshazi, Paul Heremans, Reinhold H. Dauskardt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


We report on the adhesion of weak interfaces in inverted P3HT:PCBM-based polymer solar cells (OPV) with either a conductive polymer, PEDOT:PSS, or a metal oxide, molybdenum trioxide (MoO3), as the hole transport layer. The PEDOT:PSS OPVs were prepared by spin or spray coating on glass substrates, or slot-die coating on flexible PET substrates. In all cases, we observed adhesive failure at the interface between the P3HT:PCBM with PEDOT:PSS layer. The adhesion energy measured for the solar cells made on glass substrates was about 1.8 J/m2, but only 0.5 J/m2 for the roll-to-roll processed flexible solar cells. The adhesion energy was insensitive to the PEDOT:PSS layer thickness in the range of 10-40 nm. A marginal increase in adhesion energy was measured with increased O2 plasma power. Compared to solution processed PEDOT:PSS, we found that thermally evaporated MoO 3 adheres less to the P3HT:PCBM layer, which we attributed to the reduced mixing at the MoO3/P3HT:PCBM interface during the thermal evaporation process. Insights into the mechanisms of delamination and the effect of different material properties and processing parameters yield general guidelines for the design of more reliable organic photovoltaic devices.© 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1262-1270
Number of pages9
JournalOrganic Electronics
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): KUS-C1-015-21
Acknowledgements: We acknowledge C. Girotto for his assistance with the spray coated sample preparation. This research was supported by the Center for Advanced Molecular Photovoltaics (CAMP) supported by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) under award no. KUS-C1-015-21. S.R. Dupont acknowledges financial support as a fellow of the Belgian American Educational Foundation (B.A.E.F).
This publication acknowledges KAUST support, but has no KAUST affiliated authors.


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