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Loss mechanisms in high efficiency polymer solar cells

MacKenzie, R. C. I.; Balderrama, V. S.; Schmeisser, S.; Stoof, R.; Greedy, S.; Pallar�s, J.; Marsal, L. F.; Chanaewa, A.; von Hauff, E.


R. C. I. MacKenzie

V. S. Balderrama

S. Schmeisser

R. Stoof

J. Pallar�s

L. F. Marsal

A. Chanaewa

E. von Hauff


Performance losses and aging mechanisms are investigated in state‐of‐the‐art PTB7:PC70BM solar cells. Inverted devices incorporating a vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) top contact have efficiencies of 8%. After aging the unencapsulated devices, no changes are observed in the open circuit voltage (Voc) or short circuit current (Jsc); however, the fill factor (FF) drops from 0.7 to 0.61. An s‐shape initially appears in the J–V curve after aging, which can be reduced by cycling through the J–V curve under illumination. This is discussed in context of the redox properties of V2O5. With impedance spectroscopy, it is demonstrated that changes to the contact interfaces are completely reversible and not responsible for the performance loss. Intensity modulated photocurrent spectroscopy combined with device modeling reveals that the loss in FF is due to trap formation in the active layer. Additionally it is observed that the performance of pristine devices is limited by optical absorption in the thin active layer and the build‐up of space charge which hinders carrier extraction.


MacKenzie, R. C. I., Balderrama, V. S., Schmeisser, S., Stoof, R., Greedy, S., Pallarès, J., …von Hauff, E. (2016). Loss mechanisms in high efficiency polymer solar cells. Advanced Energy Materials, 6(4), 1-7.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 9, 2015
Online Publication Date Dec 10, 2015
Publication Date Feb 18, 2016
Deposit Date Oct 30, 2018
Publicly Available Date Oct 31, 2018
Journal Advanced Energy Materials
Print ISSN 1614-6832
Electronic ISSN 1614-6840
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 6
Issue 4
Article Number 1501742
Pages 1-7
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: R.C.I. MacKenzie, V.S. Balderrama, S. Schmeisser, R. Stoof, S. Greedy,
J. Pallarès, L. F. Marsal, A. Chanaewa, E. von Hauff, Loss Mechanisms in High Efficiency Polymer Solar Cells, Advanced Energy Materials (2016), v.6, issue 4, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.


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