Synthetic Nuances to Maximize n-Type Organic Electrochemical Transistor and Thermoelectric Performance in Fused Lactam Polymers

Adam Marks, Xingxing Chen, Ruiheng Wu, Reem B. Rashid, Wenlong Jin, Bryan D. Paulsen, Maximilian Moser, Xudong Ji, Sophie Griggs, Dilara Meli, Xiaocui Wu, Helen Bristow, Joseph Strzalka, Nicola Gasparini, Giovanni Costantini, Simone Fabiano, Jonathan Rivnay, Iain McCulloch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Scopus citations


A series of fully fused n-type mixed conduction lactam polymers p(g7NCnN), systematically increasing the alkyl side chain content, are synthesized via an inexpensive, nontoxic, precious-metal-free aldol polycondensation. Employing these polymers as channel materials in organic electrochemical transistors (OECTs) affords state-of-the-art n-type performance with p(g7NC10N) recording an OECT electron mobility of 1.20 × 10-2 cm2 V-1 s-1 and a μC∗ figure of merit of 1.83 F cm-1 V-1 s-1. In parallel to high OECT performance, upon solution doping with (4-(1,3-dimethyl-2,3-dihydro-1H-benzoimidazol-2-yl)phenyl)dimethylamine (N-DMBI), the highest thermoelectric performance is observed for p(g7NC4N), with a maximum electrical conductivity of 7.67 S cm-1 and a power factor of 10.4 μW m-1 K-2. These results are among the highest reported for n-type polymers. Importantly, while this series of fused polylactam organic mixed ionic-electronic conductors (OMIECs) highlights that synthetic molecular design strategies to bolster OECT performance can be translated to also achieve high organic thermoelectric (OTE) performance, a nuanced synthetic approach must be used to optimize performance. Herein, we outline the performance metrics and provide new insights into the molecular design guidelines for the next generation of high-performance n-type materials for mixed conduction applications, presenting for the first time the results of a single polymer series within both OECT and OTE applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4642-4656
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number10
StatePublished - Mar 16 2022
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • General Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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