Quantum auto-ionization of molecular excitons and photovoltaic conversion
V. A. Benderskii+, E. I. Kats*×
+Institute of Problems of Chemical Physics of the RAS, 142432 Chernogolovka, Russia
*Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics of the RAS, 142432 Chernogolovka, Russia
×Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, 141700 Dolgoprudny, Russia
This paper explores a novel way of charge separation (auto-ionization) of
molecular excitons, by quantum tunneling through nano-size p-n junction.
This mechanism can dominate the standard one (i.e., when Frenkel exciton is
ionized at donor or acceptor impurity sites)
for very short, nano-size, p-n junction, where the junction electric field can
be strong for relatively small (on the order of 1 V) voltage drop.
Within a simple one-dimensional model for the depletion region of the p-n
junction (donor and acceptor reservoirs connected by a short molecular wire)
we compute the quantum yield Yb for the tunneling exciton auto-ionization in
the "bulk" of the depletion region.
For modern organic photo-sensitive materials with p-n junction size on the
order of 10-20 nm, Yb could be close to 1.
Such a high efficiency of the charge separation (one of the main factor entering
figure of merit, indicating how good are photovoltaic conversion
cells) makes this new mechanism potentially very perspective for the