Tuning Hole Transport Layer using Urea for High-Performance Perovskite Solar Cells

Kai Zhu, Hytham Elbohy, Behzad Bahrami, Sally Mabrouk, Khan Reza, Ashim Gurung, Rajesh Pathak, Mao Liang, Qiquan Qiao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

108 Scopus Citations


Interface engineering is critical to the development of highly efficient perovskite solar cells. Here, urea treatment of hole transport layer (e.g., poly(3,4-ethylene dioxythiophene):polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT:PSS)) is reported to effectively tune its morphology, conductivity, and work function for improving the efficiency and stability of inverted MAPbI3 perovskite solar cells (PSCs). This treatment has significantly increased MAPbI3 photovoltaic performance to 18.8% for the urea treated PEDOT:PSS PSCs from 14.4% for pristine PEDOT:PSS devices. The use of urea controls phase separation between PEDOT and PSS segments, leading to the formation of a unique fiber-shaped PEDOT:PSS film morphology with well-organized charge transport pathways for improved conductivity from 0.2 S cm−1 for pristine PEDOT:PSS to 12.75 S cm−1 for 5 wt% urea treated PEDOT:PSS. The urea-treatment also addresses a general challenge associated with the acidic nature of PEDOT:PSS, leading to a much improved ambient stability of PSCs. In addition, the device hysteresis is significantly minimized by optimizing the urea content in the treatment.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number1806740
Number of pages9
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Issue number47
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5900-72477


  • conductivity
  • hole transport material
  • perovskite solar cell
  • urea


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