|Title||X-Ray Scattering Reveals Ion-Induced Microstructural Changes During Electrochemical Gating of Poly(3-Hexylthiophene)|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2018|
|Authors||Thomas, Elayne M., Michael A. Brady, Hidenori Nakayama, Bhooshan C. Popere, Rachel A. Segalman, and Michael L. Chabinyc|
|Journal||Advanced Functional Materials|
|Keywords||charge transports, doping, organic semiconductors, UV–visible spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction|
The heterogeneous microstructure of semicrystalline polymers complicates the relationship between their electrical conductivity and carrier concentration. Charge transport models typically describe conductivity with an assumption of uniform doping throughout the material. Here, the evolution in morphology and optoelectronic properties of poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) is reported as a function of carrier concentration in an organic electrochemical transistor using a polymeric ionic liquid (PIL) as the gate insulator. Operando grazing incidence X-ray scattering reveals that negatively charged ions from the dielectric first infiltrate the amorphous regions of the semiconductor, and then penetrate the crystalline regions at a critical carrier density of 4 × 1020 cm−3. Upon infiltration, the crystallites expand by 12% in the alkyl stacking direction and compress by 4% in the π–π stacking direction. The change in crystal structure of P3HT correlates with a sharply increasing effective carrier mobility. UV–visible spectroscopy reveals that holes induced in P3HT first reside in the crystalline regions of the polymer, which verifies that a charge carrier need not be in the same physical domain as its associated counterion. The dopant-induced morphological changes of P3HT rationalize the dependence of mobility on carrier concentration, suggesting a phase transition of crystalline regions at high carrier concentration.