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Keywords:

  • conjugated polymers;
  • heterostructures;
  • organic electronics;
  • patterning;
  • photolithography

Abstract

Solution processing of polymer semiconductors provides a new paradigm for large-area electronics manufacturing on flexible substrates, but it also severely restricts the realization of interesting advanced device architectures, such as lateral heterostructures with defined interfaces, which are easily accessible with inorganic materials using photolithography. This is because polymer semiconductors degrade, swell, or dissolve during conventional photoresist processing. Here a versatile, high-resolution photolithographic method is demonstrated for patterning of polymer semiconductors and exemplify this with high-performance p-type and n-type field-effect transistors (FETs) in both bottom- and top-gate architectures, as well as ambipolar light-emitting field-effect transistors (LEFETs), in which the recombination zone can be pinned at a photolithographically defined lateral heterojunction between two semiconducting polymers. The technique therefore enables the realization of a broad range of novel device architectures while retaining optimum materials performance.