Interface engineering in planar perovskite solar cells: energy level alignment, perovskite morphology control and high performance achievement†
We report a simple and effective interface engineering method for achieving highly efficient planar perovskite solar cells (PSCs) employing SnO2 electron selective layers (ESLs). Herein, a 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane (APTES) self-assembled monolayer (SAM) was used to modify the SnO2 ESL/perovskite layer interface. This APTES SAM demonstrates multiple functions: (1) it can increase the surface energy and enhance the affinity of the SnO2 ESL, which induce the formation of high quality perovskite films with a better morphology and enhanced crystallinity. (2) Its terminal functional groups form dipoles on the SnO2 surface, leading to a decreased work function of SnO2 and enlarged built-in potential of SnO2/perovskite heterojunctions. (3) The terminal groups can passivate the trap states at the perovskite surface via hydrogen bonding. (4) The thin insulating layer at the interface can hinder electron back transfer and reduce the recombination process at the interface effectively. With these desirable properties, the best-performing cell employing a APTES SAM modified-SnO2 ESL achieved a PCE over 18% and a steady-state efficiency of 17.54%. Impressively, to the best of our knowledge, the obtained VOC of 1.16 V is the highest value reported for the CH3NH3PbI3 (MAPbI3) system. Our results suggest that the ESL/perovskite interface engineering with a APTES SAM is a promising method for fabricating efficient and hysteresis-less PSCs.