Elucidating Batch-to-Batch Variation Caused by Homocoupled Side Products in Solution-Processable Organic Solar Cells

Tim Vangerven, Pieter Verstappen, Nilesh Patil, Jan D'Haen, Ilaria Cardinaletti, Johannes Benduhn, Niko Van Den Brande, Maxime Defour, Vincent Lemaur, David Beljonne, Roberto Lazzaroni, Benoit Champagne, Koen Vandewal, Jens Wenzel Andreasen, Peter Adriaensens, Dag Werner Breiby, Bruno Van Mele, Dirk Vanderzande, Wouter Maes, Jean Manca

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Conjugated polymers and small molecules based on alternating electron-donating (D) and electron-accepting (A) building blocks have led to state-of-the-art organic solar cell materials governing efficiencies beyond 10%. Unfortunately, the connection of D and A building blocks via cross-coupling reactions does not always proceed as planned, which can result in the generation of side products containing D-D or A-A homocoupling motifs. Previous studies have reported a reduced performance in polymer and small molecule solar cells when such defect structures are present. A general consensus on the impact of homocouplings on device performance is, however, still lacking as is a profound understanding of the underlying causes of the device deterioration. For differentiating the combined effect of molecular weight and homocouplings in polymer solar cells, a systematic study on a small molecule system (DTS(FBBTh2)2) is presented. The impact of homocouplings on nanomorphology, thermal, and electro-optical properties is investigated. It is demonstrated that small quantities of homocouplings (
Original languageEnglish
JournalChemistry of Materials
Issue number24
Pages (from-to)9088-9098
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Chemical reactions
  • Conjugated polymers
  • Defects
  • Electronic properties
  • Molecules
  • Nanostructured materials
  • Optical properties
  • Organic polymers
  • Organic solar cells
  • Polymer solar cells
  • Batch-to-batch variations
  • Cross coupling reactions
  • Device performance
  • Electrooptical properties
  • Photoactive layers
  • Small molecule systems
  • Solar cell materials
  • Solution processable
  • Solar cells


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