Wide-Bandgap Small Molecular Acceptors Based on a Weak Electron-Withdrawing Moiety for Efficient Polymer Solar Cells

Yanting Gong, Zhipeng Kan, Weidong Xu, Yang Wang, Sanaa Hayel Nazil Alshammari, Frédéric Laquai, Wen-Yong Lai, Wei Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Narrow-bandgap small molecular acceptors (SMAs) with absorption extending into the near-infrared spectral region such as ITIC derivatives are widely investigated, while the development of their wide-bandgap counterparts remains largely unexplored. Wide-bandgap non-fullerene acceptors (NFAs) are highly desirable and beneficial for constructing efficient device layouts such as ternary blend and tandem solar cells that require multiple light-harvesting materials with different regions of absorption. In this contribution, the design and synthesis of two wide-bandgap SMAs (IDT-TBA and IDDT-TBA), consisting of a weak electron-withdrawing moiety (1,3-diethyl-2-thiobarbituric acid, TBA) is presented. Compared to ITIC, this molecular design strategy results in energetically down-shifted HOMO levels and hence much enlarged bandgaps of 1.91 eV for IDT-TBA and 1.78 eV for IDDT-TBA, respectively. Further photovoltaic performance evaluation demonstrates power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of 6.5% for IDT-TBA and 7.5% for IDDT-TBA, respectively, when using PBDB-T as the electron donor polymer. In addition, time-delayed collection field (TDCF) experiments suggest that both IDT-TBA and IDDT-TBA based cells exhibit field-independent charge generation with external charge generation efficiencies exceeding 90%, implying negligible geminate recombination losses. The results demonstrate that TBA units are promising and attractive building blocks as weak electron-withdrawing acceptors to construct wide-bandgap high-efficiency SMAs for efficient organic photovoltaic devices.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1800120
JournalSolar RRL
Issue number10
StatePublished - Jul 16 2018

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: Y.G. and Z.K. contributed equally to this work. This study was supported by the National Key Basic Research Program of China (973 Program, 2014CB648300, 2017YFB0404501, 2015CB932203), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (21674050, 21422402, 61704077), the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (BK20171007, BK20140060), the Leading Talent of Technological Innovation of National Ten-Thousands Talents Program of China, the Excellent Scientific and Technological Innovative Teams of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (TJ217038), the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2016M601784, 2017T100358), the Postdoctoral Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (1701135B), the NUPT “1311 Project” and Scientific Foundation (NY217169), the Synergetic Innovation Center for Organic Electronics and Information Displays, the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD), the 333 Project of Jiangsu Province (BRA2017402), and the open research fund of Key Laboratory for Organic Electronics and Information Displays. The research reported in this publication was also supported by funding from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). Minor changes were made to the acknowledgements and abstract on October 16, 2018 after initial online publication.


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