Phase segregation enhanced ion movement in efficient inorganic CsPbIBr2 solar cells

Wei Li, Mathias Uller Rothmann, Amelia Liu, Ziyu Wang, Yupeng Zhang, Alexander R. Pascoe, Jianfeng Lu, Liangcong Jiang, Yu Chen, Fuzhi Huang, Yong Peng, Qiaoliang Bao, Joanne Etheridge, Udo Bach, Yi-Bing Cheng

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164 Citations (Scopus)


Organic-inorganic hybrid perovskite solar cells with mixed cations and mixed halides have achieved impressive power conversion efficiency of up to 22.1%. Phase segregation due to the mixed compositions has attracted wide concerns, and their nature and origin are still unclear. Some very useful analytical techniques are controversial in microstructural and chemical analyses due to electron beam-induced damage to the "soft" hybrid perovskite materials. In this study photoluminescence, cathodoluminescence, and transmission electron microscopy are used to study charge carrier recombination and retrieve crystallographic and compositional information for all-inorganic CsPbIBr2 films on the nanoscale. It is found that under light and electron beam illumination, "iodide-rich" CsPbI(1+ x )Br(2- x ) phases form at grain boundaries as well as segregate as clusters inside the film. Phase segregation generates a high density of mobile ions moving along grain boundaries as ion migration "highways." Finally, these mobile ions can pile up at the perovskite/TiO2 interface resulting in formation of larger injection barriers, hampering electron extraction and leading to strong current density-voltage hysteresis in the polycrystalline perovskite solar cells. This explains why the planar CsPbIBr2 solar cells exhibit significant hysteresis in efficiency measurements, showing an efficiency of up to 8.02% in the reverse scan and a reduced efficiency of 4.02% in the forward scan, and giving a stabilized efficiency of 6.07%.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1700946
Number of pages8
JournalAdvanced Energy Materials
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2017


  • Cathodoluminescence
  • Hysteresis
  • Inorganic perovskite solar cells
  • Ion movement
  • Phase segregation

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