Graphene nanoribbon blends with P3HT for organic electronics†
In organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) the electrical characteristics of polymeric semiconducting materials suffer from the presence of structural/morphological defects and grain boundaries as well as amorphous domains within the film, hindering an efficient transport of charges. To improve the percolation of charges we blend a regioregular poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) with newly designed N = 18 armchair graphene nanoribbons (GNRs). The latter, prepared by a bottom-up solution synthesis, are expected to form solid aggregates which cannot be easily interfaced with metallic electrodes, limiting charge injection at metal–semiconductor interfaces, and are characterized by a finite size, thus by grain boundaries, which negatively affect the charge transport within the film. Both P3HT and GNRs are soluble/dispersible in organic solvents, enabling the use of a single step co-deposition process. The resulting OFETs show a three-fold increase in the charge carrier mobilities in blend films, when compared to pure P3HT devices. This behavior can be ascribed to GNRs, and aggregates thereof, facilitating the transport of the charges within the conduction channel by connecting the domains of the semiconductor film. The electronic characteristics of the devices such as the Ion/Ioff ratio are not affected by the addition of GNRs at different loads. Studies of the electrical characteristics under illumination for potential use of our blend films as organic phototransistors (OPTs) reveal a tunable photoresponse. Therefore, our strategy offers a new method towards the enhancement of the performance of OFETs, and holds potential for technological applications in (opto)electronics.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2014 Hybrid Materials