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Open Access Electro-optical performance of molybdenum oxide modified aluminum doped zinc oxide anodes in organic light emitting diodes: A comparison to indium tin oxide

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Organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) have been extensively researched for applications in solid state lighting and emissive flat panel displays. Along with improved device lifetime and efficiency, significant cost reductions are required for OLED technology to find widespread use. The transparent conducting oxide (TCO) anode, specifically indium tin oxide (ITO), is a significant contributor to device cost. Low cost alternatives to ITO such as aluminum doped zinc oxide (AZO) are therefore of technological interest. Basic bilayer OLEDs employing AZO surface modified with approximately 3 nm of molybdenum sub-oxide (MoO x ) anodes (AZO/3 nm MoO x ) exhibited peak luminance (L), power efficiency (PE), luminous efficiency (LE), and external quantum efficiency (EQE) of 8959 Cd/m2, 3.3 lm/W, 4.1 Cd/A, and 1.4%, respectively. The corresponding values for devices with standard ITO anodes were 8080 Cd/m2, 2.9 lm/W, 3.1 Cd/A, and 1.0%, respectively. In all devices studied, tris(8-hydroxyquinolinato)aluminum (AlQ3) was the emissive and electron-transport layer, and N,N'-bis(naphthalene-1-yl)– N,N'-bis(phenyl)-benzidine (NPB) was the hole transport layer. Ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy (UPS) measurements revealed an effective workfunction of 4.8 eV for the composite AZO/MoO x anode, compared to 4.6 eV for ITO. Further, UPS of the MoO x revealed the presence of a defect band below the fermi level, which is due to the filling of Mo 4d states, and indicates the presence of Mo4+, Mo5+ and compensating oxygen vacancies. These donor-like gap states in MoO x lower the hole injection barrier from AZO, which in turn reduces the turn-on voltage compared to as-deposited AZO (i.e., neat AZO). The improved device performance compared to ITO is ascribed to better charge balance.

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Document Type: Rapid Communication

Publication date: June 1, 2016

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  • Materials Express is a peer-reviewed multidisciplinary journal reporting emerging researches on materials science, engineering, technology and biology. Cutting-edge researches on the synthesis, characterization, properties, and applications of a very wide range of materials are covered for broad readership; from physical sciences to life sciences. In particular, the journal aims to report advanced materials with interesting electronic, magnetic, optical, mechanical and catalytic properties for industrial applications.
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