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Spray printing of organic semiconducting single crystals

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Single-crystal semiconductors have been at the forefront of scientific interest for more than 70 years, serving as the backbone of electronic devices. Inorganic single crystals are typically grown from a melt using time-consuming and energy-intensive processes. Organic semiconductor single crystals, however, can be grown using solution-based methods at room temperature in air, opening up the possibility of large-scale production of inexpensive electronics targeting applications ranging from field-effect transistors and light-emitting diodes to medical X-ray detectors. Here we demonstrate a low-cost, scalable spray-printing process to fabricate high-quality organic single crystals, based on various semiconducting small molecules on virtually any substrate by combining the advantages of antisolvent crystallization and solution shearing. The crystals' size, shape and orientation are controlled by the sheer force generated by the spray droplets' impact onto the antisolvent's surface. This method demonstrates the feasibility of a spray-on single-crystal organic electronics.

No MeSH data available.


TIPS-PEN XRD and AFM characterization including transistor data.(a) μ-XRD of a single crystal and (b) the refined unit cell with the (0–10) and (010) orientations highlighted. (c) AFM height profile of a monomolecular terrace. Inset AFM image showing four monomolecular terraces. (d) Optical microscope image of a single-crystal FET, with gold source-drain electrodes evaporated on top. The channel length is L=50 μm and its width W=50 μm, which is equal to the width of the crystal. (e) Transfer and output characteristics (inset) of the device shown in d.
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f3: TIPS-PEN XRD and AFM characterization including transistor data.(a) μ-XRD of a single crystal and (b) the refined unit cell with the (0–10) and (010) orientations highlighted. (c) AFM height profile of a monomolecular terrace. Inset AFM image showing four monomolecular terraces. (d) Optical microscope image of a single-crystal FET, with gold source-drain electrodes evaporated on top. The channel length is L=50 μm and its width W=50 μm, which is equal to the width of the crystal. (e) Transfer and output characteristics (inset) of the device shown in d.

Mentions: The crystal quality of the generated structures was further investigated using XRD and atomic force microscopy (AFM). XRD data for the TIPS-PEN sample demonstrate very narrow diffraction spots, as shown in Fig. 3a, indicating single-crystal behaviour. The preferential orientation of these crystals is towards the 010 (Fig. 3b) direction, which is consistent with previous observations for this type of molecule. In addition, the dimensions of the refined unit cell (a=7.562 Å, b=7.735 Å, c=16.844 Å, α=89.57°, β=78.50°, γ=83.72°) match the known crystal structure21 with the intermolecular distance in the order of 3.54 Å (Supplementary Fig. 10). AFM images obtained from the surface of the samples (Fig. 3c) revealed well-defined crystal terraces with a height of 1.3–1.7 nm, which is comparable to the height of a single molecular layer2030. Thicker crystals can be produced by altering the solution concentration (Supplementary Fig. 9).


Spray printing of organic semiconducting single crystals
TIPS-PEN XRD and AFM characterization including transistor data.(a) μ-XRD of a single crystal and (b) the refined unit cell with the (0–10) and (010) orientations highlighted. (c) AFM height profile of a monomolecular terrace. Inset AFM image showing four monomolecular terraces. (d) Optical microscope image of a single-crystal FET, with gold source-drain electrodes evaporated on top. The channel length is L=50 μm and its width W=50 μm, which is equal to the width of the crystal. (e) Transfer and output characteristics (inset) of the device shown in d.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5121410&req=5

f3: TIPS-PEN XRD and AFM characterization including transistor data.(a) μ-XRD of a single crystal and (b) the refined unit cell with the (0–10) and (010) orientations highlighted. (c) AFM height profile of a monomolecular terrace. Inset AFM image showing four monomolecular terraces. (d) Optical microscope image of a single-crystal FET, with gold source-drain electrodes evaporated on top. The channel length is L=50 μm and its width W=50 μm, which is equal to the width of the crystal. (e) Transfer and output characteristics (inset) of the device shown in d.
Mentions: The crystal quality of the generated structures was further investigated using XRD and atomic force microscopy (AFM). XRD data for the TIPS-PEN sample demonstrate very narrow diffraction spots, as shown in Fig. 3a, indicating single-crystal behaviour. The preferential orientation of these crystals is towards the 010 (Fig. 3b) direction, which is consistent with previous observations for this type of molecule. In addition, the dimensions of the refined unit cell (a=7.562 Å, b=7.735 Å, c=16.844 Å, α=89.57°, β=78.50°, γ=83.72°) match the known crystal structure21 with the intermolecular distance in the order of 3.54 Å (Supplementary Fig. 10). AFM images obtained from the surface of the samples (Fig. 3c) revealed well-defined crystal terraces with a height of 1.3–1.7 nm, which is comparable to the height of a single molecular layer2030. Thicker crystals can be produced by altering the solution concentration (Supplementary Fig. 9).

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Single-crystal semiconductors have been at the forefront of scientific interest for more than 70 years, serving as the backbone of electronic devices. Inorganic single crystals are typically grown from a melt using time-consuming and energy-intensive processes. Organic semiconductor single crystals, however, can be grown using solution-based methods at room temperature in air, opening up the possibility of large-scale production of inexpensive electronics targeting applications ranging from field-effect transistors and light-emitting diodes to medical X-ray detectors. Here we demonstrate a low-cost, scalable spray-printing process to fabricate high-quality organic single crystals, based on various semiconducting small molecules on virtually any substrate by combining the advantages of antisolvent crystallization and solution shearing. The crystals' size, shape and orientation are controlled by the sheer force generated by the spray droplets' impact onto the antisolvent's surface. This method demonstrates the feasibility of a spray-on single-crystal organic electronics.

No MeSH data available.