Crystallization of methyl ammonium lead halide perovskites: Implications for photovoltaic applications

Yaron Tidhar, Eran Edri, Haim Weissman, Dorin Zohar, Gary Hodes, David Cahen, Boris Rybtchinski, Saar Kirmayer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

383 Scopus citations


Hybrid organic/lead halide perovskites are promising materials for solar cell fabrication, resulting in efficiencies up to 18%. The most commonly studied perovskites are CH3NH3PbI3 and CH3NH3PbI3-x Clx where x is small. Importantly, in the latter system, the presence of chloride ion source in the starting solutions used for the perovskite deposition results in a strong increase in the overall charge diff usion length. In this work we investigate the crystallization parameters relevant to fabrication of perovskite materials based on CH3NH3PbI3 and CH3NH3PbBr3. We find that the addition of PbCl2 to the solutions used in the perovskite synthesis has a remarkable eff ect on the end product, because PbCl2 nanocrystals are present during the fabrication process, acting as heterogeneous nucleation sites for the formation of perovskite crystals in solution. We base this conclusion on SEM studies, synthesis of perovskite single crystals, and on cryo-TEM imaging of the frozen mother liquid. Our studies also included the effect of different substrates and substrate temperatures on the perovskite nucleation efficiency. In view of our findings, we optimized the procedures for solar cells based on lead bromide perovskite, resulting in 5.4% efficiency and Voc of 1.24 V, improving the performance in this class of devices. Insights gained from understanding the hybrid perovskite crystallization process can aid in rational design of the polycrystalline absorber films, leading to their enhanced performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13249-13256
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number38
StatePublished - 24 Sep 2014
Externally publishedYes

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© 2014 American Chemical Society.


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