A perspective on the operating principles of organic bulk heterojunction solar cells is outlined and used to suggest an alternative device configuration, employing two type II semiconductor heterojunctions in series. Guiding principles to the implementation of this configuration, called a double heterojunction, are summarized. Assuming an exciton binding energy of 0.3 eV or less, results in a maximum achievable power conversion efficiency of well over 25 %. Achieving a high efficiency organic double heterojunction requires a specific energy level alignment, charge separation in the absence of driving forces, high phase purity and excellent diode quality. Fully conjugated triblock polymers of the form [D1-A1]-[D1-A2]-[D2-A2] appear to be a system that can fulfill these requirements. Going forward, the primary challenge is the identification and development of synthetically tractable materials which have the necessary properties.
Kaake, Loren G. Towards the Organic Double Heterojunction Solar Cell, Chem. Rec., 2019, 6, 1131-1141. DOI: 10.1002/tcr.201800180
Towards the Organic Double Heterojunction Solar Cell
Copyright is held by the author(s).
Member of collection