Materials Science

Ordering up just the right temperature

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Science  24 Apr 2015:
Vol. 348, Issue 6233, pp. 409
DOI: 10.1126/science.348.6233.409-d

One typically thinks of glassy or amorphous materials as having little of the order or structure that is found in a crystal. However, the molecules of organic glasses deposited from the vapor phase, like those that form the active layer in a light-emitting diode or solar cell, can show a preferential molecular orientation. Dalal et al. use high-throughput screening to show that the quality of this orientation can be tuned through control over the substrate temperature during deposition, which influences the molecular mobility at the surface. This ability may give a simple route to optimizing active layers in organic electronics, because the molecular orientation can affect light emission, charge mobility, and device lifetimes.

Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 10.1073/pnas.1421042112 (2015).

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