Scientists at the MPI-P Mainz, BASF Ludwigshafen, the University of Ulm, and Innovation Lab Heidelberg have developed a simulation toolkit for evaluating properties of organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) based solely on their chemical composition. The package is integrated in the free software VOTCA and helps to pre-select suitable organic molecules for lighting and display applications.
The research group headed by Dr. Denis Andrienko, project leader at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (Theory department, director Prof. Kurt Kremer) has developed a set of multiscale simulation techniques which predict macroscopic properties of an organic light emitting diode (OLED) from its chemical composition.
Possible workflows of parameter-free OLED simulations: polarizable force-fields and electronic properties of isolated molecules obtained from first principles are used to generate amorphous morphologies and evaluate charge transfer rates in small systems (microscopic models). Coarse-grained models are parametrized either by matching macroscopic observables, e.g., charge mobility, of the microscopic and coarse-grained (lattice) models. The resulting analytical expressions for mobility are then used to solve drift-diffusion equations for the entire device, after incorporating long-range electrostatic effects and electrodes. Alternatively, off-lattice models can be developed by matching distributions and correlations of site energies, electronic couplings, and positions of molecules. The master equations for this model can be solved using the kinetic Monte Carlo algorithm, yielding macroscopic characteristics of a device.
The link between the molecular and mesoscopic scales became possible by combining advanced coarse-graining techniques with efficient simulation algorithms (see Figure). Implemented, among others, by the PhD candidate Pascal Kordt and postdoctoral fellow Dr. Jeroen van der Holst, this development facilitated computer simulations of electron and exciton motion in about 100 nanometer-thick OLED layers, i.e. macroscopically large, yet microscopically-resolved systems.
The developed methods are reviewed in the feature article “Modeling of Organic Light Emitting Diodes: From Molecular to Device Properties” of Advanced Functional Materials, and highlighted as a cover page.
Denis Andrienko explains how useful the software is to the organic semiconductors industry: “Modern mobile phones already use OLED (AMOLED), and large OLED-based TV screens are entering the market. Yet, the materials design for these applications often progresses via the trial-and-error strategy”, he explains.
“In our approach both atomistic morphologies of amorphous OLED layers and charge motion are predicted solely from molecular structures. In contrast to experiments, OLED properties are then directly linked to the underlying chemistry and material morphology.”
The expectation, backed up by the European Research Council and financially supported by the German Ministry for Education and Research (grant MESOMERIE, FKZ 13N10723), is that the computer-based design will rapidly grow in the coming years, allowing companies to save money on synthesis and characterization of new materials.
Interestingly, the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano and Shuji Nakamura for the invention of efficient blue light-emitting diodes, or LEDs. LEDs are by now used as signal lights in alarm clocks, entertainment devices, flashlights, and more recently in large-area displays, where tiny red, green, and blue LEDs form a pixel. Millions of pixels are employed to display an image.
In every pixel electrons constantly recombine with their counterparts (holes) and form photons, the elementary particle of light. Depending on the material, these photons have different energy, or wavelength, which then determines the light color. LEDs are made of inorganic materials and are therefore exceptionally stable. Recent developments in organic semiconductors illustrated that organic semiconductors can provide complementary material properties, e.g. high contrast ratios, curved shapes, or mechanical flexibility (bendable and foldable displays).
The task of computer simulations is to help designing new materials for OLEDs. Even with modern supercomputers, however, it is impossible to simulate an OLED with the full atomistic detail. To remedy the situation, multiscale schemes are employed: properties of a single molecule are evaluated using first principle methods.
Subsequently, a classical molecular model is parameterized and used to study systems of thousands molecules. OLED layers, however, consist of 100 nanometer thick layers (millions of molecules). In VOTCA, an intermediate stochastic model is introduced, which reproduces distributions of important microscopic properties (e.g. distances between molecules), and is then employed to simulate an entire OLED device.
In spite of the clear roadmap in designing new materials for OLEDs, the methods and code development are always “under construction”, which makes it an interesting and exciting research topic.
http://www.mpip-mainz.mpg.de/molecules_to_OLED - Press release and original publication
http://www2.mpip-mainz.mpg.de/~andrienk/ - Information about Dr. Andrienko and his research
http://www.mpip-mainz.mpg.de/home/en - Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research
Natacha Bouvier | Max-Planck-Institut für Polymerforschung
DGIST develops 20 times faster biosensor
24.04.2017 | DGIST (Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology)
New quantum liquid crystals may play role in future of computers
21.04.2017 | California Institute of Technology
More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.
Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...
Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
24.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.04.2017 | Materials Sciences
24.04.2017 | Life Sciences