J. Panidi, A.F. Paterson, D. Khim, Z. Fei, Y. Han, L. Tsetseris, G. Vourlias, P.A. Patsalas, M. Heeney, T.D. Anthopoulos
Advanced Science, 5 (1), 1700290, (2018)
Doping, Lewis acid dopant, Organic semiconductors, Organic transistors, Printed flexible electronics
Improving the charge carrier mobility of solution-processable organic semiconductors is critical for the development of advanced organic thin-film transistors and their application in the emerging sector of printed electronics. Here, a simple method is reported for enhancing the hole mobility in a wide range of organic semiconductors, including small-molecules, polymers, and small-molecule:polymer blends, with the latter systems exhibiting the highest mobility. The method is simple and relies on admixing of the molecular Lewis acid B(C6F5)3 in the semiconductor formulation prior to solution deposition. Two prototypical semiconductors where B(C6F5)3 is shown to have a remarkable impact are the blends of 2,8-difluoro-5,11-bis(triethylsilylethynyl)anthradithiophene:poly(triarylamine) (diF-TESADT:PTAA) and 2,7-dioctyl-benzothieno[3,2-b]benzothiophene:poly(indacenodithiophene-co-benzothiadiazole) (C8-BTBT:C16-IDTBT), for which hole mobilities of 8 and 11 cm2 V-1 s-1, respectively, are obtained. Doping of the 6,13-bis(triisopropylsilylethynyl)pentacene:PTAA blend with B(C6F5)3 is also shown to increase the maximum hole mobility to 3.7 cm2 V-1 s-1. Analysis of the single and multicomponent materials reveals that B(C6F5)3 plays a dual role, first acting as an efficient p-dopant, and secondly as a microstructure modifier. Semiconductors that undergo simultaneous p-doping and dopant-induced long-range crystallization are found to consistently outperform transistors based on the pristine materials. Our work underscores Lewis acid doping as a generic strategy towards high performance printed organic microelectronics.