M. Roeffaers

Texture Formation in Polycrystalline Thin Films of All-Inorganic Lead Halide Perovskite

J.A. Steele, E. Solano, H. Jin, V. Prakasam, T. Braeckevelt, H. Yuan, Z. Lin, R. de Kloe, Q. Wang, S.M.J. Rogge, V. Van Speybroeck, D. Chernyshov, J. Hofkens, M. Roeffaers
Advanced Materials
33 (13), 2007224


Controlling grain orientations within polycrystalline all-inorganic halide perovskite solar cells can help increase conversion efficiencies toward their thermodynamic limits, however the forces governing texture formation are ambiguous. Using synchrotron X-ray diffraction, we report meso-structure formation within polycrystalline CsPbI2.85Br0.15 powders as they cool from a high-temperature cubic perovskite (α-phase). Tetragonal distortions (β-phase) trigger preferential crystallographic alignment within polycrystalline ensembles, a feature we suggest is coordinated across multiple neighboring grains via interfacial forces that select for certain lattice distortions over others. External anisotropy is then imposed on polycrystalline thin films of orthorhombic (γ-phase) CsPbI3-xBrx perovskite via substrate clamping, revealing two fundamental uniaxial texture formations; (i) I-rich films possess orthorhombic-like texture (<100> out-of-plane; <010> and <001> in-plane), while (ii) Br-rich films form tetragonal-like texture (<110> out-of-plane; <1-10> and <001> in-plane). In contrast to relatively uninfluential factors like the choice of substrate, film thickness and annealing temperature, Br incorporation modifies the γ-CsPbI3-xBrx crystal structure by reducing the orthorhombic lattice distortion (making it more tetragonal-like) and governs the formation of the different, energetically favored textures within polycrystalline thin films.

Thermal unequilibrium of strained black CsPbI3 thin films

J.A. Steele, H. Jin, I. Dovgaliuk, R.F. Berger, T. Braeckevelt, H. Yuan, C. Martin, E. Solano, K. Lejaeghere, S.M.J. Rogge, C. Notebaert, W. Vandezande, K.P.F. Janssen, B. Goderis, E. Debroye, Y.-K. Wang, Y. Dong, D. Ma, M. Saidaminov, H. Tan, Z. Lu, V. Dyadkin, D. Chernyshov, V. Van Speybroeck, E.H. Sargent, J. Hofkens, M. Roeffaers
365 (6454), 679-684


The high-temperature all-inorganic CsPbI3 perovskite black phase is metastable relative to its yellow non-perovskite phase, at room temperature. Since only the black phase is optically active, this represents an impediment for the use of CsPbI3 in optoelectronic devices. We report the use of substrate clamping and biaxial strain to render stable, at room temperature, black phase CsPbI3 thin films. We used synchrotron-based grazing incidence wide angle x-ray scattering to track the introduction of crystal distortions and strain-driven texture formation within black CsPbI3 thin films when they were cooled following annealing at 330°C. The thermal stability of black CsPbI3 thin films is vastly improved by the strained interface, a response verified by ab initio thermodynamic modelling.

Open Access version available at UGent repository
Gold Open Access

Active Role of Methanol in Post-Synthetic Linker Exchange in the Metal-Organic Framework UiO-66

J. Marreiros, C. Caratelli, J. Hajek, A. Krajnc, G. Fleury, B. Bueken, D. De Vos, G. Mali, M. Roeffaers, V. Van Speybroeck, R. Ameloot
Chemistry of Materials
31 (4), 1359-1369


UiO-66 is known as one of the most robust metal-organic framework materials. Nevertheless, UiO-66 has also been shown to undergo post-synthetic exchange of structural linkers with surprising ease in some sol-vents. To date the exchange mechanism has not yet been fully elucidated. Here, we show how time-resolved monitoring grants insight into the selected case of exchanging 2-aminoterephthalic acid into UiO-66 in methanol. Analysis of both the solid and liquid phase, complemented by computational insights, revealed the active role of methanol in the creation and stabilization of metastable states in which dangling linkers are similar to monocarboxylate defects that can be introduced during UiO-66 synthesis, such dangling link-ers undergo fast exchange. The presence of missing linker or missing cluster defects at the start of the ex-change process was shown to have no considerable impact on the equilibrium composition. After the ex-change process, the incoming 2-aminoterephthalate and remaining terephthalate linkers were distributed homogeneously in the framework for the typical small crystal size of UiO-66 (≈500nm).

Open Access version available at UGent repository
Green Open Access

Stabilizing the perovskite phase of cesium lead iodide thin films via interfacial strains


Conference / event / venue 

5th International Conference on Perovskite Solar Cells and Optoelectronics (PSCO19)
Lausanne, Switzerland
maandag, 30 september, 2019 t/m woensdag, 2 oktober, 2019
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