My current research aims to address fundamental challenges in non-fullerene acceptor-based (NFAs) organic photovoltaics by the design and synthesis of a new class of NFA materials based on bis(naphthalene imide)arylenelidenes (BNIAs) with improved intrinsic electrochemical stability, photostability, and photovoltaic device performance. Current top-performing NFA (ITIC) all show irreversible reduction peaks, implying poor electrochemical stability and electron transport. Additionally, bulky solubilizing spirophenyl groups limit π-stacking, hindering charge transport. To address these limitations, I have synthesized a series of four BNIA-based electron acceptors with varying electron-donor moieties. The BNIAs exhibit highly reversible reduction peaks on cyclic voltammetry, with the best BNIA showing PCE of 10.8% with µe = 1.44×10-4 cm2/Vs. Next, I will synthesize a pyrrol-based donor moiety and perylene-based end group to increase infrared photon harvesting. To increase π-stacking and electron mobility, the BNIA end groups will be paired with homemade, highly planar donor moieties lacking out-of-plane solubilizing groups.
Advisor: Samson Jenekhe – Chemistry