Perovskites for Photovoltaics in the Spotlight: Photoinduced Physical Changes and Their Implications

Ronen Gottesman, Arie Zaban*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Conspectus: Organic-inorganic halide perovskites are in consensus to revolutionize the field of photovoltaics and optoelectronic devices due to their superior optical and electronic properties which are unprecedented in comparison to those of other solution processed semiconductors. These hybrid materials are used as light absorbers and also as charge carriers which makes them very versatile to be implemented and studied in a multitude of fields. Traditionally, the working paradigm in solar cells and optoelectronic devices' characterization has been that the properties of photovoltaic materials remain stable following illumination of varying times and intensities. However, recently there has been a growing number of reports on prolonged illumination-dependent physical changes in perovskite films and perovskite based devices. The changes are reversible and range from structural transformations and differences in optical characteristics, to an increase in optoelectronic properties and physical parameters.In this Account, we review the physical changes in three reported model systems which display changes under prolonged illumination of light intensities of ∼0.01-1 sun. The three systems are (i) a free-standing perovskite film on a glass substrate, (ii) a symmetrical system with nonselective electrical contacts, and (iii) a working perovskite solar cell (either a planar or a porous structure). We examine each model system and discuss its photoinduced physical changes and conclude with the implications on future experimentation design, data analysis, and characterization that involve organic-inorganic halide perovskites illumination.Since hybrid perovskites are considered to be mixed ionic-electronic conductors in nature, ions that migrate in the perovskite under electrical fields can influence its properties. Therefore, an important distinction is made between photoinduced effects and photo and electric field induced effects. Thus, photoinduced effects are designated as observed effects in illuminated free-standing films or symmetrical devices without selective contacts. In contrast, photo- and electric field induced effects are designated as observed effects under open-circuit potential or during voltage scanning (internal electrical field exists across the device). In the latter case, the two effects are superimposed and it is difficult to evaluate the relative influence of each one (light or electric field). However, we show that the magnitude and the importance of the photoinduced effect are substantial.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)320-329
Number of pages10
JournalAccounts of Chemical Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 16 Feb 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 American Chemical Society.


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