University of Birmingham > Talks@bham > School of Chemistry Seminars > School Seminar: Bottom-Up Design of π-Conjugated Hybrid Materials for Solar Energy Conversion

School Seminar: Bottom-Up Design of π-Conjugated Hybrid Materials for Solar Energy Conversion

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  • UserDr Rachel C. Evans, Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy, University of Cambridge
  • ClockTuesday 28 November 2017, 14:00-15:00
  • HouseHaworth 203.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr Dwaipayan Chakrabarti.

School seminar hosted by Prof. Zoe Pikramenou

Π-conjugated systems, such as conjugated polymers and organic dyes, are promising active components for organic solar cells and luminescent solar concentrators (LSCs). The optical and electronic properties depend explicitly on the arrangement and packing of the π-conjugated molecule in the solid-state, which affects device performance. However, molecular packing is particularly difficult to control using the solution processing methods favored for organic device fabrication.

To tackle this challenge, we have been exploring the use of self-assembly and grafting strategies to control the (macro)molecular organisation of π-conjugated species in thin films and bulk materials. In this talk, both approaches will be presented. First, we will consider how nanostructured solutions can be designed through electrostatic co-assembly between oppositely-charged conjugated polyelectrolytes and surfactants. It will be shown that the targeted nanostructure can be transferred to thin films, which can be used as cathodic interfacial layers to enhance the performance of organic solar cells. In the second approach, Π-conjugated composites based on conjugated lumophores immobilised within a functional organic-inorganic hybrid polymer host will be presented. It will be shown that through judicious selection of the degree of branching of the organic backbone and the incorporation method (grafting vs π—π stacking), the packing, orientation and placement of the Π-conjugated species in the ureasil host can be controlled. This in turn provides a means of modulating the optical properties, e.g. a dramatic enhancement in emission quantum yield, colour tuning through energy transfer and improved light harvesting, which can be used to develop highly efficient LSCs to enhance the performance of silicon solar cells.

This talk is part of the School of Chemistry Seminars series.

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