KSC Seminar with Prof. Barry Rand

KSC Seminar: Order, disorder, and energy loss in organic photovoltaics

Speaker: Prof. Barry P. Rand from Princeton University

Date & Time: Monday, November 15th, 2021 at 12:00 PM

Location: Engineering Science Hall (Building 9), Lecture Hall 2 (R 2325).


We will discuss our recent work to better understand the role of charge transfer (CT) states in organic solar cell function. For one, we have been exploring organic semiconductor-based thin films that feature crystalline grains of up to 1 mm in extent, termed microcrystalline films. We have found that CT states incorporating these long-range-ordered films can be highly delocalized, contributing to noticeably lower energy losses. In another system, we are studying donor-acceptor pairs that feature very high optical gaps (>3 eV) but relatively small frontier orbital energy offset (<1 eV). Such interfaces present multiple CT states that reveal new insight about photocurrent generation and nonradiative recombination at donor-acceptor interfaces. Finally, we have developed a framework to discriminate between dynamic and static disorder contributions. Both are shown to contribute, and the relative contribution depends on materials choice and temperature.


Barry Rand earned a BE in electrical engineering from The Cooper Union in 2001. Then he received MA and PhD degrees in electrical engineering from Princeton University, in 2003 and 2007, respectively. From 2007 to 2013, he was at imec in Leuven, Belgium, ultimately as a principal scientist, researching the understanding, optimization, and manufacturability of thin-film solar cells. Since 2013, he is in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment at Princeton University, currently as an Associate Professor. Prof. Rand’s research interests highlight the border between electrical engineering, materials science, chemistry, and applied physics, covering electronic and optoelectronic thin-films and devices. He has authored over 150 refereed journal publications, has 23 issued US patents, and has received the 3M Nontenured Faculty Award (2014), DuPont Young Professor Award (2015), DARPA Young Faculty Award (2015), and ONR Young Investigator Program Award (2016).