Mobile-Ion-Induced Degradation of Organic Hole-Selective Layers in Perovskite Solar Cells

Yicheng Zhao, Wenke Zhou, Hairen Tan, Rui Fu, Qi Li, Fang Lin, Dapeng Yu, Grant Walters, Edward H. Sargent*, Qing Zhao

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


Organometal halide perovskites are mixed electronic-ionic semiconductors. It is imperative to develop a deeper understanding of how ion-migration behavior in perovskites impacts the long-term operational stability of solar cells. In this work, we found that ion penetration from the perovskite layer into the adjacent organic hole-selective layer is a crucial cause of performance degradation in perovskite solar cells. The monovalent cation, namely, methylammonium (MA+), is the main ion species that penetrates into the organic hole-selective layer of Spiro-MeOTAD because of the built-in electric field during operation. The incorporation of MA+ induces deep-level defects in the Spiro-MeOTAD layer and thereby deteriorates the hole-transporting ability of Spiro-MeOTAD, degrading solar cell performance. Our work points to two ways to improve the stability of perovskite solar cells: one is to insert a compact ion-blocking layer between Spiro-MeOTAD and perovskite, and the other is to find a hole-selective layer that is insensitive to extraneous ions (MA+). (Chemical Equation Presented).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14517-14523
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number27
StatePublished - Jul 13 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Energy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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