Thermal degradation related to the PEDOT:PSS hole transport layer and back electrode of the flexible inverted organic photovoltaic module

Hyung Jin Son, Hong Kwan Park, Ji Yeon Moon, Byeong Kwon Ju, Sung Hyun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


The hole transport layer (HTL) and back electrode play a significant role in the stability of the flexible organic photovoltaic (OPV) module. In particular, poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS), a widely used hole transport material, is known to be associated with many degrading factors in the OPV field. This study highlights the impact of the PEDOT:PSS layer on thermal stability using a thermal acceleration test of flexible OPV modules with the inverted structure of indium tin oxide/ZnO/photoactive layer/PEDOT:PSS/Ag. The results confirm that thermal degradation of the OPV devices depends on heat temperature, in which the OPV performance degrades by a notable decrease in the open-circuit voltage (Voc) as the temperature increases from 65 °C to 85 °C. Moreover, the stability of Voc is enhanced when the PEDOT:PSS layer is thicker and contains polar solvent DMSO as an additive, suggesting that the thermal degradation can correlate with the properties of the PEDOT:PSS layer. In addition, microscopy images of the active layers show that the surface damage is attributed to a residual solvent of the printed Ag electrode, thereby resulting in a thermally induced drop in the short circuit current density (Jsc). More detailed descriptions are presented in this paper, and the results are expected to offer a comprehensive understanding of the thermal degradation mechanism of OPV modules.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1974-1983
Number of pages10
JournalSustainable Energy and Fuels
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Apr

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the New & Renewable Energy of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP) granted nancial resource from the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy, Republic of Korea (no. 20163010012200).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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