Mechanical & Materials Engineering, Department of


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© 2006 American Institute of Physics.


We investigate the effect of interfacial buffer layers—vanadium oxide (V2O5) and cesium carbonate (Cs2CO3)—on the performance of polymer solar cells based on regioregular poly-(3-hexylthiophene) and [6,6]-phenyl C60 butyric acid methyl ester blend. The polarity of solar cells can be controlled by the relative positions of these two interfacial layers. Efficient inverted polymer solar cells were fabricated with the structure of indium tin oxide (ITO)/Cs2CO3/polymer blend/vanadium oxide (V2O5)/aluminum (Al). Short-circuit current of 8.42 mA/cm2, open-circuit voltage of 0.56 V, and power conversion efficiency of 2.25% under a AM1.5G 130 mW/cm2 condition were achieved. The interfacial layers were also used to fabricate polymer solar cells using ITO and a thin gold (Au) layer as the transparent electrodes. The thickness of V2O5 layer (10 nm) makes it an effective protective layer for the active layer so that ITO can be used for both the electrodes, enabling highly efficient transparent polymer solar cells (i.e., polymer solar cells with transparent electrodes). Application of this structure for multiple-stacking polymer solar cells is also discussed.