Characterization and simulation of electrolyte-gated organic field-effect transistors
In this work we fabricate and characterize field-effect transistors based on the solution-processable semiconducting polymer poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT). Applying two independent gate potentials to the electrolyte-gated organic field-effect transistor (EGOFET), by using a conventional SiO2 layer as the back-gate dielectric and the electrolyte-gate as the top-gate, allows the measurement of the electrical double layer (EDL) capacitance at the semiconductor–electrolyte interface. We record the transfer curves of the transistor in salt solutions of different concentration by sweeping the bottom gate potential for various constant electrolyte-gate potentials. A change of the electrolyte-gate potential towards more negative voltages shifts the threshold voltage of the bottom-gate channel towards more positive back-gate potentials, which is directly proportional to the capacitive coupling factor. By operating the EGOFET in the dual-gate mode, we can prove the dependency of the EDL capacitance on the molarity of the electrolyte according to the Debye–Hückel theory, and additionally show the difference between a polarizable and non-polarizable electrolyte-gate electrode. With the experimentally obtained values for the EDL capacitance at the semiconductor–electrolyte interface we can model the electrolyte-gate transfer characteristics of the P3HT OTFT.