The activities of the Theory & Modelling members focus on developing the capacity to predict the morphology of active materials over different length scales from the atomistic to the device level, forming a basis from which crucial optical and transport properties can be calculated.
Their expertise ranges from quantum chemistry, quantum condensed matter physics to classical atomistic and coarse-grained models and molecular simulation techniques to continuum approaches at the device level.
The Frontier Materials members prepare state-of-the art compounds of different classes [small molecules, conjugated polymers, dendrimers, poly(dendrimers), and nanoparticles – organic or organometallic].
The materials are designed with a specific application in mind, e.g., materials for OLEDs, solar cells or sensors. Materials are also prepared with environmental friendliness in mind.
Members with expertise in Morphology probe the properties of films across a range of length scales including the physical structure of the films and interfaces, through to the bulk materials properties.
The ability to connect experimentally determined film morphology with bulk optoelectronic properties in a controlled manner is critical in the development of optoelectronic devices. Morphology in organic semiconductors is a term used to describe structure (for example, crystallinity, order, and disorder) and the three-dimensional relationship between different materials or alternative phases of the same material.
At the heart of many organic semiconductor applications is the generation of a photo-excited state. The dynamics and lifetimes of these states are determined by the energetics and thermodynamics of the different phases within highly complex and often heterogeneous films.
Thus the Photophysics members study the photophysical processes of the semiconducting materials themselves, as well as in the solid-state to understand the key physics that creates charges from excitons and vice versa.
The Transport & Electronic Properties members study the true nature of carrier mobility and recombination in organic semiconductors. They determine what is the minimum carrier mobility required to deliver a particular device performance metric. The work aims to develop an understanding of the relationship between transport and film structure at a molecular level for different applications.
In order to translate any organic optoelectronic platform into a commercial reality, prototype devices need to be produced at a size suited to the application via an appropriate manufacturing methodology. The Device members work on a range of different devices including OLEDs, solar cells, transistor (including light-emitting transistors), lasers, photodiodes, and sensors, which can be used in applications such as displays and lighting, electricity generation, and explosives detection.
The ultimate goal is to integrate several different organic semiconductor technologies into a single device for selected applications.