Dependence of surface morphology on molecular structure and its influence on the properties of OLEDs

S H Lim, G Y Ryu, J H Seo, J H Park, S W Youn, Y K Kim, D M Shin
Ultramicroscopy 2008, 108 (10): 1251-5
Most organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) have a multilayer structure composed of organic layers such as a hole injection layer (HIL), a hole transport layer (HTL), an emission layer (EML), an electron transport layer (ETL) and an electron injection layer (EIL) sandwiched between two electrodes. The organic layers are thin solid films with a thickness from a few nano meters to a few tenths nano meter, respectively. Surface morphology of an organic thin solid film in OLEDs depends on the molecular structure of the organic material and has an affect on device performance. To analyze the effect of surface morphology of an organic thin solid film on fluorescence and electroluminescence (EL) properties, thin solid films of 4-(dicyanomethylene)-2-methyl-6-(julolidin-4-yl-vinyl)-4H-pyran (DCM2) and new red fluorophores, (2E,2'E)-3,3'-[4,4''-bis(dimethylamino)-1,1':4',1''-terphenyl-2',5'-diyl]bis[2-(2-thienyl)acrylonitrile] (ABCV-Th) and (2Z,2'Z)-3,3'-[4,4''-bis(dimethylamino)-1,1':4',1''-terphenyl-2',5'-diyl]bis(2-phenylacrylonitrile) (ABCV-P) were investigated by atomic force microscopy (AFM). The samples for EL and AFM measurement were fabricated by the high-vacuum thermal deposition (8 x 10(-7) Torr) of organic materials onto the surface of indium tin oxide (ITO)-coated glass substrate, in which the layer structures of samples for AFM measurement and those for EL measurement were ITO/NPB (40 nm)/red emitters (80 nm) and ITO/NPB (40 nm)/red emitters (80 nm)/BCP (30 nm)/Liq (2 nm)/Al (100 nm), respectively. The analysis based on AFM measurements well supported that the photoluminescence properties and the device performance were very much dependent upon surface morphology of an organic thin layer.

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