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Journal of Photonics for Energy • Open Access

Toward bulk heterojunction polymer solar cells with thermally stable active layer morphology
Author(s): Ilaria Cardinaletti; Jurgen Kesters; Sabine Bertho; Bert Conings; Fortunato Piersimoni; Jan D’Haen; Laurence Lutsen; Milos Nesladek; Bruno Van Mele; Guy Van Assche; Koen Vandewal; Alberto Salleo; Dirk Vanderzande; Wouter Maes; Jean V. Manca

Paper Abstract

When state-of-the-art bulk heterojunction organic solar cells with ideal morphology are exposed to prolonged storage or operation at elevated temperatures, a thermally induced disruption of the active layer blend can occur, in the form of a separation of donor and acceptor domains, leading to diminished photovoltaic performance. Toward the long-term use of organic solar cells in real-life conditions, an important challenge is, therefore, the development of devices with a thermally stable active layer morphology. Several routes are being explored, ranging from the use of high glass transition temperature, cross-linkable and/or side-chain functionalized donor and acceptor materials, to light-induced dimerization of the fullerene acceptor. A better fundamental understanding of the nature and underlying mechanisms of the phase separation and stabilization effects has been obtained through a variety of analytical, thermal analysis, and electro-optical techniques. Accelerated aging systems have been used to study the degradation kinetics of bulk heterojunction solar cells <italic<in situ</italic< at various temperatures to obtain aging models predicting solar cell lifetime. The following contribution gives an overview of the current insights regarding the intrinsic thermally induced aging effects and the proposed solutions, illustrated by examples of our own research groups.

Paper Details

Date Published: 10 June 2014
PDF: 12 pages
J. Photon. Energy. 4(1) 040997 doi: 10.1117/1.JPE.4.040997
Published in: Journal of Photonics for Energy Volume 4, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Ilaria Cardinaletti, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
Jurgen Kesters, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
Sabine Bertho, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
Bert Conings, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
Fortunato Piersimoni, Univ. Potsdam (Germany)
Jan D’Haen, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
Laurence Lutsen, IMEC vzw (Belgium)
Milos Nesladek, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
Bruno Van Mele, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
Guy Van Assche, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
Koen Vandewal, Technische Univ. (Germany)
Alberto Salleo, Stanford Univ. (United States)
Dirk Vanderzande, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
IMEC vzw (Belgium)
Wouter Maes, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
IMEC vzw (Belgium)
Jean V. Manca, Univ. Hasselt (Belgium)
IMEC vzw (Belgium)

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