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Structural control of mixed ionic and electronic transport in conducting polymers



Jonathan Rivnay, Sahika Inal, Brian Collins, Michelle Sessolo, Eleni Stavrindou, Christopher Tassone, Dean DeLongchamp, George Malliaras


Poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) doped with poly(styrenesulfonate), PEDOT:PSS, has been utilized for over two decades as a stable, solution-processable conductor. While electrical properties have been the subject of intense materials investigation, recent work has turned to PEDOT:PSS as a mixed ionic/electronic conductor in applications ranging from energy storage to bioelectronics. Conducting polymers can efficiently transport both holes and ions when sufficiently hydrated, however, little is known about the role of morphology on mixed conduction. Here we show that bulk ionic and electronic mobilities are simultaneously affected by the changes in micro- and meso-scale structure in PEDOT:PSS films. We quantify domain composition, and find that domain purification on addition of dispersion co-solvents limits ion mobility, even while electronic conductivity improves. Improved mixed transport is shown to be critical for electrochemical transistors -- known to be efficient ionic-to-electronic signal transducers for bioelectronics sensing. By elucidating the role of morphology, these findings pave the way for rational design of new polymeric materials and processing routes to enhance devices reliant on synchronous motion of ionic and electronic species.
Nature Communications


bioelectronics, organic electronics, electrochemistry


Rivnay, J. , Inal, S. , Collins, B. , Sessolo, M. , Stavrindou, E. , Tassone, C. , DeLongchamp, D. and Malliaras, G. (2016), Structural control of mixed ionic and electronic transport in conducting polymers, Nature Communications (Accessed April 20, 2024)
Created April 16, 2016, Updated October 12, 2021