Five-minute synthesis of silver nanowires and their roll-to-roll processing for large-area organic light emitting diodes†
Silver (Ag) nanowires (NWs) are promising building blocks for flexible transparent electrodes, which are key components in fabricating soft electronic devices such as flexible organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs). Typically, Ag NWs have been synthesized using a polyol method, but it still remains a challenge to produce high-aspect-ratio Ag NWs via a simple and rapid process. In this work, we developed a modified polyol method and newly found that the addition of propylene glycol to ethylene glycol-based polyol synthesis facilitated the growth of Ag NWs, allowing the rapid production of long Ag NWs with high aspect ratios of about 2000 in a high yield (∼90%) within 5 min. Transparent electrodes fabricated with our Ag NWs exhibited performance comparable to that of an indium tin oxide-based electrode. With these Ag NWs, we successfully demonstrated the fabrication of a large-area flexible OLED with dimensions of 30 cm × 15 cm using a roll-to-roll process.