In this article we report on a new hybrid (organic-inorganic) composite material based on hydrophilic, electrically inert and semi-transparent hydrotalcite (HT) nanoparticles and a pHneutral formulation of PEDOT:PSS. The application of this composite material as electrically and optically active buffer layer in P3HT:PC61BM bulk heterojunction (BHJ) solar cells is reported. Two different synthetic routes are explored to obtain HTs having discoid shape, with a diameter of around 150- 200 nm and a thickness of ~20 nm, to be easily embedded in ~50 nm thick PEDOT:PSS films. The good affinity between HTs and the sulfonate groups of the PEDOT:PSS allows to obtain homogeneous HTs/PEDOT:PSS films, for HT concentrations of 0.25% and 0.50% by weight (vs. PEDOT:PSS). At these particle loads the electrical and morphological features of doped and undoped PEDOT:PSS films are nearly identical, while providing a significant effect on the visible light scattering properties of the composite films. We demonstrate ~12% improvement in power conversion efficiency (PCE) for P3HT:PC61BM solar cells incorporating HTs in the PEDOT: PSS layer, which mainly originates from increased shortcircuit current densities (JSC).
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.