Fabrication and characterization of WO3/Ag/WO3 multilayer transparent anode with solution-processed WO3 for polymer light-emitting diodes
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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:253 doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-253Published: 15 May 2012
The dielectric/metal/dielectric multilayer is suitable for a transparent electrode because of its high-optical and high-electrical properties; however, it is fabricated by an expensive and inefficient multistep vacuum process. We present a WO3/Ag/WO3 (WAW) multilayer transparent anode with solution-processed WO3 for polymer light-emitting diodes (PLEDs). This WAW multilayer not only has high transmittance and low resistance but also can be easily and rapidly fabricated. We devised a novel method to deposit a thin WO3 layer by a solution process in an air environment. A tungstic acid solution was prepared from an aqueous solution of Na2WO4 and then converted to WO3 nanoparticles (NPs) by a thermal treatment. Thin WO3 NP layers form WAW multilayer with a thermal-evaporated Ag layer, and they improve the transmittance of the WAW multilayer because of its high transmittance and refractive index. Moreover, the surface of the WO3 layer is homogeneous and flat with low roughness because of the WO3 NP generation from the tungstic acid solution without aggregation. We performed optical simulation and experiments, and the optimized WAW multilayer had a high transmittance of 85% with a sheet resistance of 4 Ω/sq. Finally, PLEDs based on the WAW multilayer anode achieved a maximum luminance of 35,550 cd/m2 at 8 V, and this result implies that the solution-processed WAW multilayer is appropriate for use as a transparent anode in PLEDs.