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AFM Materials Journal Club

Relation Between Charge Transport and the Number of Interconnected Lamellar Poly(3-Hexylthiophene) Crystals

by Binghua Wang, Jingbo Chen, Changyu Shen, Günter Reiter, and Bin Zhang

Macromolecules 2019 52 (16), 6088-6096

In this publication, Wang et al. relate charge transport in Poly(3-Hexylthiophene) (P3HT) directly to its multiscale ordered structure. P3HT is one of the most prominent conjugated polymers, with applications from field-effect transistors to LEDs and solar cells. Charge carrier transport in P3HT is understood to relate to crystallinity, but typical thin films contain a mixture of phases. The authors use a preparation method that creates interconnected lamellae and removes all other phases of P3HT. Current mapping with PeakForce TUNA in conjunction with X-ray scattering and UV-VIS spectroscopy show that a contiguous network of edge-on, pi-stacked lamellae is key to long range charge transport. Formation of the optimized structure is related to processing conditions, indicating a potential path for improving performance of organic electronics devices.