energy level-alignment

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energy-level alignment at organic heterointerfaces

Today’s champion organic (opto-)electronic devices, like the mobile-phone displays in your hand or the TV-screens in your home, comprise an ever-increasing number of layers of different organic molecules. The functionality of these complex heterostructures largely derives from the relative values of the discrete energies that charge carriers can have in each layer with respect to those in all other layers. Despite the technological relevance of the energy-level alignment at organic heterointerfaces, and despite continued scientific interest, however, a reliable theoretical model that can quantitatively predict the full range of phenomena observed at such interfaces is notably absent. We identify the limitations of previous attempts to formulate such a model and highlight inconsistencies in the interpretation of the experimental data they were based on. We then develop a theoretical framework, which we demonstrate to accurately reproduce experiment. Applying this theory, a comprehensive overview of all possible energy-level alignment scenarios that can be encountered at organic heterojunctions is finally given. These results will help focus future efforts on developing functional organic interfaces for superior device performance.

This work was published under the Cc by nc license in:
M. Oehzelt, K. Akaike, N. Koch, G. Heimel:
Science Advances 1, e1501127 (2015). full-text

wider impact

link     check out our project on organic-substrate interfaces

  further reading

K. Akaike, N. Koch, G. Heimel, M. Oehzelt
The Impact of Disorder on the Energy Level Alignment at Molecular Donor-Acceptor Interfaces,
Advanced Materials Interfaces 2, 1500232 (2015). link

K. Akaike, N. Koch, M. Oehzelt
Fermi level pinning induced electrostatic fields and band bending at organic heterojunctions,
Applied Physics Letters 105, 223303 (2014). link

H. Wang, P. Amsalem, G. Heimel, I. Salzmann, N. Koch, M. Oehzelt
Band-Bending in Organic Semiconductors: the Role of Alkali-Halide Interlayers,
Advanced Materials 26, 925 (2014). link

calculations support measurements:

S. Winkler, P. Amsalem, J. Frisch, M. Oehzelt, G. Heimel, N. Koch
Probing the energy levels in hole-doped molecular semiconductors,
Materials Horizons 2, 427 (2015). link

H. Mendez, G. Heimel, S. Winkler, J. Frisch, A. Opitz, K. Sauer, B. Wegner, M. Oehzelt, C. Rothel, S. Duhm, D. Tobbens, N. Koch, I. Salzmann
Charge-transfer crystallites as molecular electrical dopants
Nature Communications 6, 8560 (2015). link

A. Opitz, A. Wilke, P. Amsalem, M. Oehzelt, R. P. Blum, J. P. Rabe, T. Mizokuro, U. Hormann, R. Hansson, E. Moons, N. Koch
Organic heterojunctions: Contact-induced molecular reorientation, interface states, and charge redistribution
Scientific Reports 6, 21291 (2016). link

I. Salzmann, G. Heimel, M. Oehzelt, S. Winkler, N. Koch
Molecular Electrical Doping of Organic Semiconductors: Fundamental Mechanisms and Emerging Dopant Design Rules
Accounts of Chemical Research 49, 370 (2016). link

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  others using our model

G. Horowitz
Validity of the concept of band edge in organic semiconductors
Journal of Applied Physics 118, 115502 (2015). link

T. J. Whitcher, W. S. Wong, A. N. Talik, K. L. Woon, N. Chanlek, H. Nakajima, T. Saisopa, P. Songsiriritthigul
Investigation into the Gaussian density of states widths of organic semiconductors
Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics 49, 325106 (2016). link

S. Beck, D. Gerbert, T. Glaser, A. Pucci
Charge Transfer at Organic/Inorganic Interfaces and the Formation of Space Charge Regions Studied with Infrared Light
The Journal of Physical Chemistry C 119, 12550 (2015). link

J.-P. Yang, W.-Q. Wang, F. Bussolotti, L.-W. Cheng, Y.-Q. Li, S. Kera, J.-X. Tang, X.-H. Zeng, N. Ueno
Quantitative Fermi level tuning in amorphous organic semiconductor by molecular doping: Toward full understanding of the doping mechanism
Applied Physics Letters 109, 093302 (2016). link

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