Journal of the American Chemical Society, Vol.143, No.11, 4281-4289, 2021
Carbon-Bridged 1,2-Bis(2-thienyl)ethylene: An Extremely Electron Rich Dithiophene Building Block Enabling Electron Acceptors with Absorption above 1000 nm for Highly Sensitive NIR Photodetectors
The emerging donor-acceptor-donor (A-D-A)-type nonfullerene acceptors (NFAs) featuring near-infrared (NIR) photoresponsivity have greatly boosted the development of organic photovoltaics (OPVs) and display great potential for sensitive NIR organic photodetectors (OPDs). However, NIR NFAs with absorption above 1000 nm, which is of great importance for application in NIR OPDs for bioimaging, remote communication, night surveillance, etc., are still rare due to the scarcity of strong electron-rich cores. We report herein a new dithiophene building block, namely PDT, which exhibits the strongest electron-donating ability among the widely used dithiophene building blocks. By applying PDT and PDTT as the electron-donating cores and DFIC as the electron-accepting terminals, we developed two new NIR electron acceptors, PDTIC-4F and PDTTIC-4F, with optical absorptions up to 1030 nm, surpassing that of the well-known O6T-4F acceptor. In comparison with the carbon-oxygen-bridged core COi8 in O6T-4F, the synthetic complexity of PDT and PDTT is significantly reduced. Conventional OPV devices based on PM6:PDTTIC-4F display power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of up to 10.70% with a broad external quantum efficiency (EQE) response from the ultraviolet-visible to the infrared, leading to a high short-circuit current density (J(sc)) of 25.90 mA cm(-2). Encouraged by these results, we investigated inverted PM6:PDTTIC-4F-based OPD devices by suppressing the dark current via modulation of the film thickness. The optimal OPD device exhibits compelling performance metrics that can compete with those of commercial silicon photodiodes: a record responsivity of 0.55 A W-1 (900 nm) among photodiode-type OPDs and excellent shot-noise-limited specific detectivity (D-sh*) of over 10(13) jones.