Material insights and challenges for non-fullerene organic solar cells based on small molecular acceptors

Jianquan Zhang, Huei Shuan Tan, Xugang Guo, Antonio Facchetti, He Yan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

651 Scopus citations


The field of non-fullerene organic solar cells has experienced rapid development during the past few years, mainly driven by the development of novel non-fullerene acceptors and matching donor semiconductors. However, organic solar cell material development has progressed via a trial-and-error approach with limited understanding of the materials’ structure–property relationships and the underlying device physics of non-fullerene devices. In addition, the availability of hundreds of donor and acceptor semiconductors creates an extremely large pool of possible donor–acceptor combinations, which poses a daunting challenge for rational material screening and matching. This Review describes several important conceptual aspects of the emerging non-fullerene devices by highlighting key contributions that provided fundamental insights regarding rational material design, donor–acceptor pair matching, blend morphology control and the reduced voltage losses in non-fullerene organic solar cells. We also discuss the key challenges that need to be addressed to develop more-efficient non-fullerene organic solar cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)720-731
Number of pages12
JournalNature Energy
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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