Development of n-type porphyrin acceptors for panchromatic light-harvesting fullerene-free organic solar cells

Un Hak Lee, Wisnu Tantyo Hadmojo, Junho Kim, Seung Hun Eom, Sung Cheol Yoon*, Sung Yeon Jang, In Hwan Jung

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The development of n-type porphyrin acceptors is challenging in organic solar cells. In this work, we synthesized a novel n-type porphyrin acceptor, PZn-TNI, via the introduction of the electron withdrawing naphthalene imide (NI) moiety at the meso position of zinc porphyrin (PZn). PZn-TNI has excellent thermal stability and unique bimodal absorption with a strong Soret band (300-600 nm) and weak Q-band (600-800 nm). The weak long-wavelength absorption of PZn-TNI was completely covered by combining the low bandgap polymer donor, PTB7-Th, which realized the well-balanced panchromatic photon-to-current conversion in the range of 300-800 nm. Notably, the one-step reaction of the NI moiety from a commercially available source leads to the cheap and simple n-type porphyrin synthesis. The substitution of four NIs in PZn ring induced sufficient n-type characteristics with proper HOMO and LUMO energy levels for efficient charge transport with PTB7-Th. Fullerene-free organic solar cells based-on PTB7-Th:PZn-TNI were investigated and showed a promising PCE of 5.07% without any additive treatment. To the best of our knowledge, this is the highest PCE in the porphyrin-based acceptors without utilization of the perylene diimide accepting unit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number473
JournalFrontiers in Chemistry
Issue numberSEP
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors gratefully acknowledge support from the New and Renewable Energy Core Technology Program of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP), granted financial resources from the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, Republic of Korea (No. 20163030013960), the National Research Foundation (NRF) Grant funded by the Korean Government (MSIP, No. 2016R1A5A1012966 and No. 2017R1C1B2010694), and the Global Scholarship Program for Foreign Graduate Students at Kookmin University in Korea.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Lee, Hadmojo, Kim, Eom, Yoon, Jang and Jung.


  • N-type porphyrins
  • Non-fullerene acceptors
  • Organic solar cells
  • Panchromatic absorption
  • Porphyrin acceptors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry


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