Modulating the charge injection in organic field-effect transistors: fluorinated oligophenyl self-assembled monolayers for high work function electrodes†
The rapid increase in charge carrier mobility in organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) in the past few years, with a number of reports >10 cm2 V−1 s−1, calls for a simultaneous improvement in charge injection at the electrode–semiconductor interface. Chemical modification of the electrodes with self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) allows the optimization of three key properties for lowering the contact resistance, thus fine-tuning the charge injection into OFET channels: the electrode work function, the surface energy of the modified electrodes and tunnelling resistance of the SAM. Understanding of the interplay of these properties is of vital importance for organic device design. In this paper, we report a model study based on the modulation of all three of these properties via chemisorption of fluorinated mono- or biphenylthiol molecules (PFBT and PF2BT, respectively) onto gold electrodes. Density functional theory simulations confirm the higher work function of the PFBT monolayers compared to PF2BT and provide evidence that this work function difference is entirely due to differences in the bond dipole to the gold surface. This observation is of importance for the development of future SAM molecules both for organic electronics and across the field of surface chemistry. Incorporation of these SAM-modified Au surfaces as the source and drain electrodes of an OFET with prototypical polymer semiconductors exhibiting different transport levels makes it possible to unravel the role of energetic alignment as well as surface energy and tunnelling resistance on the device performance. Interestingly, our results show that it is not always the high work function PFBT-modified electrodes that give the lowest contact resistance.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2015 Journal of Materials Chemistry C Hot Papers