Morphological effects of organic and inorganic semiconducting materials by scanning probe microscopy
Solution deposition of thin film photovoltaic materials leads to large variations in the morphological and chemical compositions of the film. In order to improve device functionality, it is important to understand how morphology and chemical composition affects charge generation, separation, and collection. This PhD work will first study bulk methods in order to characterize materials in solution and films. The results are then correlated with microscopy studies examining morphology. Other methods used in this PhD work will directly couple spectra and microscopy. Microscopic regions of such films and devices can be illuminated using scanning confocal microscopy or near-field scanning optical microscopy (NSOM), which allows for one to directly probe regions of the film at or below the optical diffraction limit. By scanning the sample over a fixed laser spot we can simultaneously create image maps of the topographical, electrical and optical properties. This technique, known as laser beam induced current (LBIC) allows one to directly probe a local area of a device with 100-300nm resolution. Along with bulk device efficiency studies, near field and confocal data of inorganic and organic materials are investigated. These include devices fabricated with a blend of P3HT (poly[3-hexylthiophene]) and perylene diimide derivatives, and Cu(InxGa1-x)Se2 [CIGS] nanoparticle devices. Finally, we use a new device architecture, a lateral organic photovoltaic (LOPV) in order to spatially resolve transport in functional organic devices.