Highly efficient ITO-free polymeric electronic devices were successfully demonstrated by replacement of the ITO electrode with a solution-processed PEDOT:PSS electrode containing Ag nanoparticles (NPs). Polymer solar cells (PSCs) and light emitting diodes (PLEDs) were fabricated based on poly(5,6-bis(octyloxy)-4-(thiophen-2-yl)benzo[c][1,2,5]thiadiazole) (PTBT):PC61BM and Super Yellow as a photoactive layer, respectively. The surface plasmon resonance (SPR) effect and improved electrical conductivity by the Ag NPs clearly contributed to increments in light absorption/emission in the active layer as well as the conductivity of the PEDOT:PSS electrode in PSCs and PLEDs. The ITO-free bulk heterojunction PSCs showed a 1% absolute enhancement in the power conversion efficiency (3.27 to 4.31%), and the power efficiency of the PLEDs was improved by 124% (3.75 to 8.4 lm W−1) compared to the reference devices without Ag NPs. The solution-processable conducting polymer, PEDOT:PSS with Ag NPs, can be a promising electrode for large area and flexible optoelectronic devices with a low-cost fabrication process.
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