Publications by Olivia Ashton


A phosphine oxide route to formamidinium lead tribromide nanoparticles

Chemistry of Materials American Chemical Society 32 (2020) 7172-7180

OJ Ashton, AR Marshall, JH Warby, B Wenger, HJ Snaith

We present the synthesis of formamidinium lead tribromide (FAPbBr3) perovskite nanocrystals through a phosphine oxide route, where in comparison to more traditional syntheses oleylamine is replaced with trioctylphosphine oxide (TOPO). This route has previously been shown to be successful for the inorganic cesium lead tribromide perovskite nanocrystals. We examine the interactions between the precursors via nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR). We confirm the existence of an interaction between FA-oleate and TOPO and use this to guide the optimization of our synthesis. When the reaction is conducted at room temperature, we observe the formation of nanoparticles with high photoluminescence quantum yield (PLQY, ∼70%) at 2.39 eV (518 nm) with little ripening or size defocusing over time. Although we obtain narrow emission peaks, the crystals are irregular in shape—a testament to the impact of the FA-oleate:TOPO interaction. Despite a drop in PLQY in the washed solutions, films made maintain a high PLQY of ∼50% at 2.33 eV (532 nm), which is fortuitously the ideal wavelength for the green emission channel in displays, and we demonstrate 532 nm electroluminescence in light-emitting diodes with an EQE of 3.7%.


Facile synthesis of stable and highly luminescent methylammonium lead halide nanocrystals for efficient light emitting devices

Journal of the American Chemical Society American Chemical Society 141 (2019) 1269-1279

Y Hassan, OJ Ashton, JH Park, G Li, N Sakai, B Wenger, A-A Haghighirad, NK Noel, MH Song, BR Lee, RH Friend, HJ Snaith

Metal halide perovskites are promising candidates for use in light emitting diodes (LEDs), due to their potential for color tunable and high luminescence efficiency. While recent advances in perovskite-based light emitting diodes have resulted in external quantum efficiencies exceeding 12.4% for the green emitters, and infrared emitters based on 3D/2D mixed dimensional perovskites have exceeded 20%, the external quantum efficiencies of the red and blue emitters still lag behind. A critical issue to date is creating highly emissive and stable perovskite emitters with the desirable emission band gap to achieve full-color displays and white LEDs. Herein, we report the preparation and characterization of a highly luminescent and stable suspension of cubic-shaped methylammonium lead triiodide (CH3NH3PbI3) perovskite nanocrystals, where we synthesize the nanocrystals via a ligand-assisted reprecipitation technique, using an acetonitrile/methylamine compound solvent system to solvate the ions and toluene as the antisolvent to induce crystallization. Through tuning the ratio of the ligands, the ligand to toluene ratio, and the temperature of the toluene, we obtain a solution of CH3NH3PbI3 nanocrystals with a photoluminescence quantum yield exceeding 93% and tunable emission between 660 and 705 nm. We also achieved red emission at 635 nm by blending the nanocrystals with bromide salt and obtained perovskite-based light emitting diodes with maximum electroluminescent external quantum efficiency of 2.75%.


The Phosphine Oxide Route toward Lead Halide Perovskite Nanocrystals.

Journal of the American Chemical Society 140 (2018) 14878-14886

G Almeida, OJ Ashton, L Goldoni, D Maggioni, U Petralanda, N Mishra, QA Akkerman, I Infante, HJ Snaith, L Manna

We report an amine-free synthesis of lead halide perovskite (LHP) nanocrystals, using trioctylphosphine oxide (TOPO) instead of aliphatic amines, in combination with a protic acid (e.g., oleic acid). The overall synthesis scheme bears many similarities to the chemistry behind the preparation of LHP thin films and single crystals, in terms of ligand coordination to the chemical precursors. The acidity of the environment and hence the extent of protonation of the TOPO molecules tune the reactivity of the PbX2 precursor, regulating the size of the nanocrystals. On the other hand, TOPO molecules are virtually absent from the surface of our nanocrystals, which are simply passivated by one type of ligand (e.g., Cs-oleate). Furthermore, our studies reveal that Cs-oleate is dynamically bound to the surface of the nanocrystals and that an optimal surface coverage is critical for achieving high photoluminescence quantum yield. Our scheme delivers NCs with a controlled size and shape: only cubes are formed, with no contamination with platelets, regardless of the reaction conditions that were tested. We attribute such a shape homogeneity to the absence of primary aliphatic amines in our reaction environment, since these are known to promote the formation of nanocrystals with sheet/platelet morphologies or layered phases under certain reaction conditions. The TOPO route is particularly appealing with regard to synthesizing LHP nanocrystals for large-scale manufacturing, as the yield in terms of material produced is close to the theoretical limit: i.e., almost all precursors employed in the synthesis are converted into nanocrystals.