Light trapping in bendable organic solar cells using silica nanoparticle arrays

Jungheum Yun, Wei Wang, Soo Min Kim, Tae Sung Bae, Sunghun Lee, Donghwan Kim, Gun Hwan Lee, Hae Seok Lee, Myungkwan Song

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


A highly efficient light-scattering layer, composed of quasi-periodic discrete silica nanoparticles directly deposited onto polymer substrates to produce bendable organic solar cells (OSCs) with enhanced light absorption, is reported. A silica nanoparticle layer (SNL) underwent self-assembly on a highly flexible and heat-sensitive polymer at room temperature during fabrication, which employed a unique plasma-enhanced chemical vapour deposition technique. Such efficient light-scattering SNLs have not been realizable by conventional solution-based coating techniques. SNLs were optimized by precisely controlling dimensional parameters, specifically, the nanoparticle layer thickness and interparticle distance. The optimized SNL exhibited an improved transmission haze of 16.8% in the spectral range of 350-700 nm, where reduction of the total transmission was suppressed to 2%. Coating light-scattering SNLs onto polymer substrates is a promising method for improving the light harvesting abilities of OSCs by enhancing the light absorption of photoactive polymer layers. This SNL-based flexible OSC exhibited a record power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 7.4%, representing a 13% improvement, while reducing the thickness of the photoactive polymer layer by 30%.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)932-940
Number of pages9
JournalEnergy and Environmental Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Mar 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Pollution


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