Tuning the dielectric properties of organic semiconductors via salt doping

Xien Liu, Kwang S. Jeong, Bryan P. Williams, Kiarash Vakhshouri, Changhe Guo, Kuo Han, Enrique D. Gomez, Qing Wang, John B. Asbury

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Enhancing the dielectric permittivity of organic semiconductors may open new opportunities to control charge generation and recombination dynamics in organic solar cells. The potential to tune the dielectric permittivity of organic semiconductors by doping them with redox inactive salts was explored using a combination of organic synthesis, electrical characterization, and time-resolved infrared spectroscopy. The addition of the salt, LiTFSI (lithium bis(trifluoro-methyl-sulfonyl)imide), to a conjugated polymer specifically designed to incorporate ions into its bulk phase increased the density of holes and enhanced the static dielectric permittivity of the polymer blend by more than an order of magnitude. The frequency and phase dependence of the real dielectric function demonstrates that the increase in dielectric permittivity resulted from dipolar motion of bound ion pairs or clusters of ions. Interestingly, the increases in the hole density and dielectric permittivity were associated with enhancement of the hole mobility by 2 orders of magnitude relative to the undoped polymer. The charge recombination lifetime also increased by an order of magnitude in the blend with a fullerene electron acceptor when ions were added to the polymer. The findings indicate that ion doping enables organic semiconductors with large increases in low frequency dielectric permittivity and that these changes result in improved charge transport and suppressed charge recombination on the microsecond time scale.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15866-15874
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number49
StatePublished - Dec 12 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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