Improved performance of poly(3-hexylthiophene)/zinc oxide hybrid photovoltaics modified with interfacial nanocrystalline cadmium sulfide

Spoerke, Erik D.; Lloyd, Matthew T.; McCready, Erica M.; Olson, Dana C.; Yun-Ju Lee; Hsu, Julia W. P.
November 2009
Applied Physics Letters;11/23/2009, Vol. 95 Issue 21, p213506
Academic Journal
To improve zinc oxide/poly(3-hexylthiophene) (ZnO/P3HT) hybrid solar cell performance, we introduce a nanocrystalline cadmium sulfide (CdS) film at the ZnO/P3HT heterojunction, creating a cascading energy band structure. Current-voltage characteristics under AM1.5 illumination show that, compared to unmodified ZnO/P3HT devices, CdS modification leads to an approximate doubling of the open-circuit voltage and a mild increase in fill factor, without sacrificing any short-circuit current. These characteristics double the power conversion efficiency for devices with an interfacial CdS layer. External quantum efficiency spectra reveal definite photocurrent contributions from the CdS layer, confirming the cascading band structure. The mechanisms behind open-circuit voltage increase are discussed.


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