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Substrate-Independent Energy-Level Pinning of an Organic Semiconductor Providing Versatile Hole-Injection Electrodes

  • Tianshu Zhai
    Tianshu Zhai
    Institute of Functional Nano & Soft Materials (FUNSOM), Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Carbon-Based Functional Materials & Devices and Joint International Research Laboratory of Carbon-Based Functional Materials and Devices, Soochow University, Suzhou 215123, People’s Republic of China
    More by Tianshu Zhai
  • Rongbin Wang
    Rongbin Wang
    Institut für Physik & IRIS Adlershof, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 12489 Berlin, Germany
    More by Rongbin Wang
  • Takayoshi Katase
    Takayoshi Katase
    Laboratory for Materials and Structures, Institute of Innovative Research, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Yokohama 226−8503, Japan
  • Frances Quigley
    Frances Quigley
    School of Physics, Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin, College Green, Dublin 2, Ireland
  • Hiromichi Ohta
    Hiromichi Ohta
    Research Institute for Electronic Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo 001-0020, Japan
  • Patrick Amsalem
    Patrick Amsalem
    Institut für Physik & IRIS Adlershof, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 12489 Berlin, Germany
  • Norbert Koch
    Norbert Koch
    Institute of Functional Nano & Soft Materials (FUNSOM), Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Carbon-Based Functional Materials & Devices and Joint International Research Laboratory of Carbon-Based Functional Materials and Devices, Soochow University, Suzhou 215123, People’s Republic of China
    Institut für Physik & IRIS Adlershof, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 12489 Berlin, Germany
    Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie GmbH, 12489 Berlin, Germany
    More by Norbert Koch
  • , and 
  • Steffen Duhm*
    Steffen Duhm
    Institute of Functional Nano & Soft Materials (FUNSOM), Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Carbon-Based Functional Materials & Devices and Joint International Research Laboratory of Carbon-Based Functional Materials and Devices, Soochow University, Suzhou 215123, People’s Republic of China
    *Email: [email protected]
    More by Steffen Duhm
Cite this: ACS Appl. Electron. Mater. 2020, 2, 12, 3994–4001
Publication Date (Web):December 8, 2020
https://doi.org/10.1021/acsaelm.0c00823
Copyright © 2020 American Chemical Society

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    Supporting Info (1)»

    Abstract

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    Tailor-made electrode work functions are indispensable to control energy-level offsets at the interfaces of (opto-)electronic devices. We show by means of photoelectron spectroscopy that several nanometer thick layers of the organic semiconductor 1,4,5,8,9,12-hexaazatriphenylene-2,3,6,7,10,11-hexacarbonitrile (HAT-CN) on virtually all substrates provide hole-injecting electrodes with work functions of around 5.60 eV. This substrate-independent energy-level alignment is due to a relatively large density of gap states in HAT-CN thin films, which is clearly visible in the photoemission data. Furthermore, this additional density of occupied states makes the wide-gap semiconductor thin films sufficiently conductive for electrode applications. Moreover, our study highlights a quite intriguing energy-level alignment scenario as the Fermi-level in HAT-CN thin films is located far from the midgap position, this is rather uncommon for undoped organic semiconductor thin films.

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    The Supporting Information is available free of charge at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsaelm.0c00823.

    • Additional photoelectron spectroscopy data of VO2 and VO2-x substrates and of HAT-CN thin films on VO2, VO2-x, MoOx, Au(111), and ITO substrates (PDF)

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    Most electronic Supporting Information files are available without a subscription to ACS Web Editions. Such files may be downloaded by article for research use (if there is a public use license linked to the relevant article, that license may permit other uses). Permission may be obtained from ACS for other uses through requests via the RightsLink permission system: http://pubs.acs.org/page/copyright/permissions.html.

    Cited By

    This article is cited by 5 publications.

    1. Li Zhang, Melissa Berteau-Rainville, Tianshu Zhai, Yuhao Wang, Qi Wang, Ingo Salzmann, Steffen Duhm. Chemical Defects and Energetic Disorder Impact the Energy‐Level Alignment of Functionalized Hexaazatriphenylene Thin Films. physica status solidi (RRL) – Rapid Research Letters 2023, 17 (9) https://doi.org/10.1002/pssr.202300001
    2. Qi Wang, Jiacheng Yang, Alexander Gerlach, Frank Schreiber, Steffen Duhm. Advanced characterization of organic–metal and organic–organic interfaces: from photoelectron spectroscopy data to energy-level diagrams. Journal of Physics: Materials 2022, 5 (4) , 044010. https://doi.org/10.1088/2515-7639/ac9f6f
    3. Botong Chen, Jiaxin Hu, Qi Wang, Steffen Duhm. Energetic disorder impacts energy-level alignment of alpha-sexithiophene on hydrogen-terminated silicon and silicon oxide. Materials Research Express 2022, 9 (8) , 085101. https://doi.org/10.1088/2053-1591/ac8644
    4. Min Chen, Jiang Guo, Fangjing Mo, Hui Meng, Wangqing Yu, Yingzi Fu. Self-enhanced photoelectrochemical sensor based on a Schottky heterostructure organic electron donor matrix. Chemical Communications 2022, 58 (3) , 455-458. https://doi.org/10.1039/D1CC04500H
    5. Jens Niederhausen, Katherine A Mazzio, Rowan W MacQueen. Inorganic–organic interfaces in hybrid solar cells. Electronic Structure 2021, 3 (3) , 033002. https://doi.org/10.1088/2516-1075/ac23a3

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