Tuning fullerene miscibility with porphyrin-terminated P3HTs in bulk heterojunction blends

Zach D. Seibers, Graham S. Collier, Benjamin W. Hopkins, Evan S. Boone, Thinh P. Le, Enrique D. Gomez, S. Michael Kilbey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Understanding and manipulating the miscibility of donor and acceptor components in the active layer morphology is important to optimize the longevity of organic photovoltaic devices and control power conversion efficiency. In pursuit of this goal, a "porphyrin-capped"poly(3-hexylthiophene) was synthesized to take advantage of strong porphyrin:fullerene intermolecular interactions that modify fullerene miscibility in the active layer. End-functionalized poly(3-hexylthiophene) was synthesized via catalyst transfer polymerization and subsequently functionalized with a porphyrin moiety via post-polymerization modification. UV-vis spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction measurements show that the porphyrin-functionalized poly(3-hexylthiophene) exhibits increased intermolecular interactions with phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) in the solid state compared to unfunctionalized poly(3-hexylthiophene) without sacrificing microstructure ordering that facilitates optimal charge transport properties. Additionally, differential scanning calorimetry revealed porphyrin-functionalized poly(3-hexylthiophene) crystallization decreased only slightly (1-6%) compared to unfunctionalized poly(3-hexylthiophenes) while increasing fullerene miscibility by 55%. Preliminary organic photovoltaic device results indicate device power conversion efficiency is sensitive to additive loading levels, as evident by a slight increase in power conversion efficiency at low additive loading levels but a continuous decrease with increased loading levels. While the increased fullerene miscibility is not balanced with significant increases in power conversion efficiency, this approach suggests that integrating non-bonded interaction potentials is a useful pathway for manipulating the morphology of the bulk heterojunction thin film, and porphyrin-functionalized poly(3-hexylthiophenes) may be useful additives in that regard.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9769-9779
Number of pages11
JournalSoft matter
Issue number42
StatePublished - Nov 14 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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