F-Substituted oligothiophenes serve as nonfullerene acceptors in polymer solar cells with open-circuit voltages >1 v

Tainan Duan*, Maxime Babics, Akmaral Seitkhan, Yuliar Firdaus, Ru Ze Liang, Federico Cruciani, Shengjian Liu, Sergei Lopatin, Pierre M. Beaujuge

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


We report on a set of two analogous, F-substituted oligothiophene derivatives (D5T6F-M and D7T8F-M), in which systematic fluorination at the thienyl moieties is shown to induce a sufficient increase in electron affinity (EA; i.e. suppressed LUMO level) and in ionization potential (IP; i.e. deeper HOMO) to (i) impart the molecules with electron-accepting and -transporting characteristics, and (ii) yield high open-circuit voltages >1 V in BHJ solar cells when combined with a low-bandgap polymer donor (PCE10) commonly used with fullerenes. The nonfullerene BHJ devices with the SM acceptor D5T6F-M achieve power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of up to ca. 4.5% (vs. ca. 2% for D7T8F-M-based devices). Our study shows that -F substitutions in SM systems-otherwise used as donors-is an effective approach in the design of nonfullerene acceptors for efficient BHJ solar cells with polymer donors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9368-9372
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry A
Issue number20
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge nancial support under Baseline Research Funding from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) and under support by the KAUST Office of Sponsored Research (OSR) under Award No. CRG_R2_13_BEAU_KAUST_1. Dr Duan acknowledges nancial support from National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 21702202).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Materials Science(all)


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