Germinant ZnO nanorods as a charge-selective layer in organic solar cells

Kunsik An, Jaehoon Kim, Mohammad Afsar Uddin, Seunghyun Rhee, Hyeok Kim, Kyung Tae Kang, Han Young Woo, Changhee Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


A facile method was introduced and demonstrated to synthesize zinc oxide (ZnO) nanorods (NRs) as an electron transporting layer (ETL) for organic solar cells (OSCs). Hydrothermal synthesis of the NRs showed a constant growth rate of 5.5 nm min−1 from germination to sub-micrometer length. The properties were characterized using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), absorption spectrophotometry and so on. Based on these measurements, the germinant growth mechanism and its corresponding orientation characteristics were investigated. As an ETL of the OSCs, ZnO NRs enhance the charge extraction from the active layer due to their increased interfacial surface area, but there is an optimal length because of the shunt path formation and UV absorption of long ZnO NRs. As a result, the OSC with the ZnO NRs as ETL shows power conversion efficiency (PCE) up to 6.2%. The J-V characteristics and incident photon-to-current conversion efficiency (IPCE) measurement also reveal that the efficiency enhancement is an assembly of individual results from optical, physical and electrical characteristic of the ZnO NRs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-94
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Materials Science and Technology
StatePublished - 15 Oct 2020


  • Hydrothermal synthesis
  • Oriented growth mechanism
  • Self-assembly
  • Solar cells
  • ZnO nanorods


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