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Title: Adhesion and Interfacial Fracture: From Organic Light Emitting Devices and Photovoltaic Cells to Solar Lanterns for Developing Regions
Authors: Tong, Tiffany Michelle
Advisors: Soboyejo, Winston O
Contributors: Electrical Engineering Department
Keywords: Adhesion
Diffusion of Technology
Interfacial Fracture
Light Emitting Devices
Solar Cells
Technology for Developing Regions
Subjects: Electrical engineering
Materials Science
Public policy
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: Princeton, NJ : Princeton University
Abstract: From that "ah-ha!" moment when a new technology is first conceived until the time that it reaches the hands of consumers, products undergo numerous iterations of research, development, testing, and redesign in order to create an end-product that is relevant, desirable, functional, and affordable. One crucial step, particularly for electronic devices, is a rigorous testing stage to ensure that a product will be able to withstand regular wear-and-tear. An understanding of how, when, and under what conditions a technology will fail is important in improving device performance and creating high quality products that consumers trust. Understanding that success is inherently tied to failure, this thesis focuses on studies of mechanical failure related to two types of electronic devices: solar cells and light emitting devices. By considering the interfaces that are relevant to the next generation of solar cells and light emitting devices that are built using organic conducting polymers, an atomic force microscopy test is introduced to characterize and rank the relative interfacial adhesion between layers at the nano-scale. These results have implications for material selection that can enhance device processing and performance. This method is then linked to fracture mechanics techniques that determine critical loading forces that induce separation and, hence, mechanical failure between layers of these devices. These results demonstrate the effect of nano-scale interactions on macro-scale behavior, and are particularly valuable in product testing as flexible electronics gain interest. Finally, a case study is conducted in Rural Kenya that measures the impact of commercially-available LED lanterns that are charged by solar panels on a community that is disconnected from the power grid. By demonstrating the value of these lanterns for the community, the role of device reliability and lifetime is examined in underscoring the critical need for proper device testing before product commercialization.
Alternate format: The Mudd Manuscript Library retains one bound copy of each dissertation. Search for these copies in the library's main catalog
Type of Material: Academic dissertations (Ph.D.)
Language: en
Appears in Collections:Electrical Engineering

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