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Understanding and Countering Illumination-Sensitive Dark Current: Toward Organic Photodetectors with Reliable High Detectivity

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journal contribution
posted on 13.01.2021, 23:13 by Jianfei Huang, Jaewon Lee, Hidenori Nakayama, Max Schrock, David Xi Cao, Kilwon Cho, Guillermo C. Bazan, Thuc-Quyen Nguyen
Continuously enhanced photoresponsivity and suppressed dark/noise current combinatorially lead to the recent development of high-detectivity organic photodetectors with broadband sensing competence. Despite the achievements, reliable photosensing enabled by organic photodetectors (OPDs) still faces challenges. Herein, we call for heed over a universal phenomenon of detrimental sensitivity of dark current to illumination history in high-performance inverted OPDs. The phenomenon, unfavorable to the attainment of high sensitivity and consistent figures-of-merit, is shown to arise from exposure of the commonly used electron transport layer in OPDs to high-energy photons and its consequent loss of charge selectivity via systematic studies. To solve this universal problem, “double” layer tin oxide as an alternative electron transport layer is demonstrated, which not only eliminates the inconsistency between the initial and after-illumination dark current characteristics but also preserves the low magnitude of dark current, good external quantum efficiency, and rapid transient response.