Alternative Organic Spacers for More Efficient Perovskite Solar Cells Containing Ruddlesden-Popper Phases

Jun Xi, Ioannis Spanopoulos, Kijoon Bang, Jie Xu, Hua Dong, Yingguo Yang, Christos D. Malliakas, Justin M. Hoffman, Mercouri G. Kanatzidis, Zhaoxin Wu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


The halide perovskite Ruddlesden-Popper (RP) phases are a homologous layered subclass of solution-processable semiconductors that have aroused great attention, especially for developing long-term solar photovoltaics. They are defined as (A′)2(A)n-1PbnX3n+1 (A′ = spacer cation, A = cage cation, and X = halide anion). The orientation control of low-temperature self-assembled thin films is a fundamental issue associated with the ability to control the charge carrier transport perpendicular to the substrate. Here we report new chemical derivatives designed from a molecular perspective using a novel spacer cation 3-phenyl-2-propenammonium (PPA) with conjugated backbone as a low-temperature strategy to assemble more efficient solar cells. First, we solved and refined the crystal structures of single crystals with the general formula (PPA)2(FA0.5MA0.5)n-1PbnI3n+1 (n = 2 and 3, space group C2) using X-ray diffraction and then used the mixed halide (PPA)2(Cs0.05(FA0.88MA0.12)0.95)n-1Pbn(I0.88Br0.12)3n+1 analogues to achieve more efficient devices. While forming the RP phases, multiple hydrogen bonds between PPA and inorganic octahedra reinforce the layered structure. For films we observe that as the targeted layer thickness index increases from n = 2 to n = 4, a less horizontal preferred orientation of the inorganic layers is progressively realized along with an increased presence of high-n or 3D phases, with an improved flow of free charge carriers and vertical to substrate conductivity. Accordingly, we achieve an efficiency of 14.76% for planar p-i-n solar cells using PPA-RP perovskites, which retain 93.8 ± 0.25% efficiency with encapsulation after 600 h at 85 °C and 85% humidity (ISOS-D-3).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19705-19714
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number46
StatePublished - Nov 18 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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