Green dioxythiophene-benzothiadiazole donor-acceptor copolymers for photovoltaic device applications

Pierre M. Beaujuge, Jegadesan Subbiah, Kaushik Roy Choudhury, Stefan Ellinger, Tracy D. McCarley, Franky So*, John R. Reynolds

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Scopus citations


With the perspective of producing power-generating displays of various colors based on π-conjugated semiconducting polymers, we have developed a synthetic design aimed at addressing color states commonly difficult to attain. Herein, we report on the structure property relationships and performance in photovoltaic devices of a series of green-colored donor acceptor (DA) π-conjugated polymers comprised of electron-rich 3,4-dioxythiophenes (DOTs) and the electrondeficient 2,1,3-benzothiadiazole (BTD). In particular, the synthesis and chemical polymerization of two DOT-BTD regiosymmetric oligomers (pentamers M2 and M3), that can be chemically oxidized to yield two-band absorbing polymers with a transmission window in the 480-560 nm range hence reflecting/transmitting the color green (P2 and P3), is reported. The optical and electrochemical properties of P2 and P3 are described and compared to those of a blue-colored parent polymer (P1) obtained via the polymerization of a smaller DOT-BTD oligomeric precursor (trimer M1). The photovoltaic (PV) properties of P1-P3 were investigated in DA bulk heterojunction (BHJ) devices with PC60BM as the acceptor. P2 and P3 afforded green-colored devices with up to 1.9% power conversion efficiency (PCE) under AM 1.5 G solar illumination. Taking into account the differences in polymer energy band structure, we have replaced PEDOT:PSS by MoO3 and optimized the solarcell device configuration for the most efficient polymer derivative (P3), demonstrating up to a 2.71 % PCE. Insight into the morphology and charge transport of these polymers in blends with PCBM is provided and related to the synthetic design and PV device performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2093-2106
Number of pages14
JournalChemistry of Materials
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 23 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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