Excited state dynamics and exciton diffusion in triphenylamine/dicyanovinyl push-pull small molecule for organic optoelectronics

Benedito A. L. Raul, Yuriy N. Luponosov, Wenyan Yang, Nikolay M. Surin, Olivier Douheret, Jie Min, Thomas L. C. Jansen, Sergei A. Ponomarenko, Maxim S. Pshenichnikov*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Triphenylamine-based small push-pull molecules have recently attracted substantial research attention due to their unique optoelectronic properties. Here, we investigate the excited state de-excitation dynamics and exciton diffusion in TPA-T-DCV-Ph-F small molecule, having simple chemical structure with asymmetrical architecture and end-capped with electron-withdrawing p-fluorodicyanovinyl group. The excited state lifetime in diluted solutions (0.04 ns in toluene and 0.4 ns in chloroform) are found to be surprisingly shorter compared to the solid state (3 ns in PMMA matrix). Time-dependent density functional theory indicates that this behavior originates from non-radiative relaxation of the excited state through a conical intersection between the ground and singlet excited state potential energy surfaces. Exciton diffusion length of similar to 16 nm in solution processed films was retrieved by employing time-resolved photoluminescence volume quenching measurements with Monte Carlo simulations. As means of investigating the device performance of TPA-T-DCV-Ph-F, we manufactured solution and vacuum processed bulk heterojunction solar cells that yielded efficiencies of similar to 1.5% and similar to 3.7%, respectively. Our findings demonstrate that the short lifetime in solutions does not hinder per se long exciton diffusion length in films thereby granting applications of TPA-T-DCV-Ph-F and similar push-pull molecules in vacuum and solution processable devices.

Original languageEnglish
Article number21198
Number of pages10
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 3-Dec-2020

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