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Title: Spatially resolved charge transport and recombination in metal-halide perovskite films and solar cells
Author: Tainter, Gregory Demaray
ISNI:       0000 0004 7652 6025
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2018
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Metal-halide perovskites show great promise as solution-processable semiconductors for efficient solar cells and LEDs. In particular, the diffusion range of photogenerated carriers is unexpectedly long and the luminescence yield is remarkably high. While much effort has been made to improve device performance, the barriers to improving charge transport and recombination properties remain unidentified. I first explore charge transport by investigating a back-contact architecture for measurement. In collaboration with the Snaith group at Oxford, we develop a new architecture to isolate charge carriers. We prepare thin films of perovskite semiconductors over laterally-separated electron- and hole-selective materials of SnOₓ and NiOₓ, respectively. Upon illumination, electrons (holes) generated over SnOₓ (NiOₓ) rapidly transfer to the buried collection electrode, leaving holes (electrons) to diffuse laterally as majority carriers in the perovskite layer. We characterise charge transport parameters of electrons and holes, separately, and demonstrate that grain boundaries do not prevent charge transport. Our results show that the low mobilities found in applied-field techniques do not reflect charge diffusivity in perovskite solar cells at operating conditions. We then use the back-contact architecture to investigate recombination under large excess of one charge carrier type. Recombination velocities under these conditions are found to be below 2 cm s⁻¹, approaching values of high quality silicon and an order of magnitude lower than under common bipolar conditions. Similarly, diffusion lengths of electrons and holes exceed 12 μm, an order of magnitude higher than reported in perovskite devices to date. We report back-contact solar cells with short-circuit currents as high as 18.4 mA cm⁻², giving 70% external charge-collection efficiency. We then explore the behaviour of charge carriers in continuously illuminated metal-halide perovskite devices. We show that continuous illumination of perovskite devices gives rise to a segregated charge carrier population, and we find that the distance photo-induced charges travel increases significantly under these conditions. Finally, we examine intermittancy in the photoluminescence intensity of metal-halide perovskite films.
Supervisor: Joyce, Hannah ; Deschler, Felix ; Friend, Richard ; Phillips, Richard Sponsor: Nanotechnology Doctoral Training Centre ; Cambridge Overseas Trust
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Perovskite solar cells ; photoluminescence spectroscopy ; photocurrent spectroscopy ; hybrid perovskites ; charge transport ; charge recombination