Effect of solvent environment on colloidal-quantum-dot solar-cell manufacturability and performance

Ahmad R. Kirmani, Graham H. Carey, Maged Abdelsamie, Buyi Yan, Dong Kyu Cha, Lisa R. Rollny, Xiaoyu Cui, E. H. Sargent, Aram Amassian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Scopus citations


The absorbing layer in state-of-the-art colloidal quantum-dot solar cells is fabricated using a tedious layer-by-layer process repeated ten times. It is now shown that methanol, a common exchange solvent, is the main culprit, as extended exposure leaches off the surface halide passivant, creating carrier trap states. Use of a high-dipole-moment aprotic solvent eliminates this problem and is shown to produce state-of-the-art devices in far fewer steps. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4717-4723
Number of pages7
JournalAdvanced Materials
Issue number27
StatePublished - Jun 4 2014

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): KUS-11-009-21
Acknowledgements: The authors acknowledge the help of Dr. Omar El Tall of the Analytical Core Laboratory, KAUST for his assistance with the FT-IR measurements, Dr. Issam Gereige of the Solar and Photovoltaic Engineering Research Center, KAUST for his assistance with IR-VASE measurements, as well as Dr. Ruipeng Li and Dr. Detlef-M. Smilgies for their assistance with GISAXS measurements at CHESS. This publication is based in part on work supported by Award KUS-11-009-21, made by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), by the Ontario Research Fund Research Excellence Program, and by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada. The authors thank Angstrom Engineering and Innovative Technology for useful discussions regarding material deposition methods and control of the glovebox environment, respectively. UPS measurements described in this paper were performed at the Canadian Light Source, which is funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the National Research Council Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Government of Saskatchewan, Western Economic Diversification Canada, and the University of Saskatchewan. The authors acknowledge the use of the D1 beam line at the Cornell High Energy Synchrotron Source supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF DMR-0225180) and NIH-NIGMS.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanical Engineering


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