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Effects of Cd Diffusion and Doping in High-Performance Perovskite Solar Cells Using CdS as Electron Transport Layer

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journal contribution
posted on 11.07.2016 by Wiley A. Dunlap-Shohl, Robert Younts, Bhoj Gautam, Kenan Gundogdu, David B. Mitzi
Perovskite solar cells with stabilized power conversion efficiency exceeding 15% have been achieved, using a methylammonium lead iodide (MAPbI3) absorber and CdS as the electron transport layer. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy reveals a small presence of Cd at the surface of most perovskite films fabricated on CdS. Perovskite films were deliberately doped with Cd to understand the possible impacts of Cd diffusion into the perovskite absorber layer. Doping substantially increases the grain size of the perovskite films but also reduces device performance through the formation of an electrical barrier, as inferred by the S-shape of their JV curves. Time-resolved photoluminescence measurements of the doped films do not indicate substantial nonradiative recombination due to bulk defects, but a secondary phase is evident in these films, which experiments have revealed to be the organic–inorganic hybrid material methylammonium cadmium iodide, (CH3NH3)2CdI4. It is further demonstrated that this compound can form via the reaction of CdS with methylammonium iodide and may form as a competing phase during deposition of the perovskite. Buildup of this insulating compound may act as an electrical barrier at perovskite interfaces, accounting for the drop in device performance.