Perylenediimide bridged silsesquioxane (PDIB) nanoparticles were synthesized by sol-gel processes as described by the Stöber method. These particles were synthesized homogeneously from solution and with the use of silica nanoparticles and bipyridine iodide bridged silsesquioxane (BPIB) nanoparticles as nucleation sites. The morphology of the resulting particles was confirmed by TEM and the presence of PDI confirmed by UV spectroscopy. Although further research will test all of the particles across a range of concentrations and sizes, the silica nucleated PDIB nanoparticles were analyzed in the active layer of bulk heterojunction organic photovoltaic devices in conjunction with P3HT polymer. Devices with the configuration of ITO/PEDOT:PSS/P3HT:(PDIB silane or nanoparticles)/calcium/aluminum prepared by spray-coating were observed to have higher power conversion efficiencies than the same devices prepared by spin-coating. Although the other nanoparticles remain untested, the silica-nucleated nanoparticle devices exhibit power conversion efficiencies of up to 3.13%. The increased performance of the devices containing nanoparticles is attributed to the morphology control of the active layer with thermally stable nanoparticles as opposed to allowing domain size to be controlled by phase-segregation in the active layer during annealing.
Advisor(s) or Committee Chair
Dr. Hemali Rathnayake
Chemistry | Physical Sciences and Mathematics
Ferguson, John T., "Synthesis and Application of PDIB Nanostructures in Solar Cells" (2015). Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects. Paper 576.