Inorganic Chalcogenide Perovskite Thin Films for Optoelectronic Applications

Interdisciplinary Areas: Power, Energy, and the Environment

Project Description

Organic-inorganic lead halide perovskites with outstanding optoelectronic properties have an Achilles heel due to their air- and moisture-sensitivity. The alternate family of air stable sulfur and/or selenium based inorganic chalcogenide perovskites (ICPs) have equally promising calculated optoelectronic properties, yet remain mostly unexplored. There is a paucity of ICP experimental data, mainly due to extremely high temperature synthetic methods that make it difficult to fabricate thin films needed for optoelectronic characterizations. To overcome the current limitations and to enable widespread use of the ICPs, the goal of this project is to develop the fundamental scientific knowledge needed for the identification and facile synthesis of well characterized ICP materials. The postdoctoral fellow will (1) design, synthesize, and characterize molecular precursors and associated solutions to be used for materials development, (2) design and execute facile synthesis of chalcogenide single perovskites (CSPs) and chalcogenide double perovskites (CDPs) thin films and nanoparticles with controlled composition, crystal structure and optoelectronic properties using the molecules from (1); (3) fabricate functioning solar cells and other devices, such as light emitting diodes, to measure their material and optoelectronic properties. The success of this project will provide much needed methods for the synthesis of stable and high performance ICPs with tailored properties and fabrication of their thin films for several electronic device applications, as well as contribute novel small molecules and methods useful to the fields of synthetic organometallic and inorganic chemistry.

Start Date


Postdoc Qualifications

An extensive knowledge in inorganic synthesis along with general interest in materials for electronic applications is required. Candidates with solution-based as well as alternate methods of synthesis are invited to apply. Knowledge of solar cells/optoelectronic devices is desirable but not essential.


1. Rakesh Agrawal, Davidson School of Chemical Engineering, email:; URL:
2. Suzanne Bart, Chemistry, email:; URL:


1. Jerod M. Kieser, Leighton O. Jones, Nathan J. Lin, Matthias Zeller, George C. Schatz, and Suzanne C. Bart*, Inorg. Chem. 2021, 60, 3460–3470.
2. Q. J. Guo, G. M. Ford, W. C Yang, B. C. Walker, E. A. Stach, H. W. Hillhouse, and R. Agrawal, “Fabrication of 7.2% Efficient CZTSSe Solar Cells using CZTS Nanocrystals”, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 132, 17384 (2010)
3. X. Zhao, S. D. Deshmukh, D. J. Rokke, G. Zhang, Z. Wu, J. T. Miller, and R. Agrawal, “Investigating Chemistry of Metal Dissolution in Amine-Thiol Mixtures & Exploiting it towards Benign Ink formulation for Metal Chalcogenide Thin Films”, Chemistry of Materials. 31, 5674 (2019), DOI: 10.1021/acs.chemmater.9b01566
4. C. K. Miskin, S. D. Deshmukh, V. Vasiraju, K. Bock, G. Mittal, A. Dubois-Camacho, S. Vaddiraju and R. Agrawal, “Lead Chalcogenide Nanoparticles and Their Size-Controlled Self Assemblies for Thermoelectric and Photovoltaic Applications”, ACS Applied Nano Materials, 2(3), 1242-1252 (2019), DOI:10.1021/acsanm.8b02125
5. S. D. Deshmukh, R. Ellis, D. Sutandar, D. J. Rokke, and R. Agrawal, “Versatile Colloidal Syntheses of Metal Chalcogenide Nanoparticles from Elemental Precursors using Amine-Thiol Chemistry", Chemistry of Materials, 31, 9087 (2019), DOI: 10.1021/acs.chemmater.9b0301
6. Tyler S. Collins, Cristian Celis-Barros, María J.Beltrań-Leiva, Nickolas H. Anderson, Matthias Zeller, Thomas Albrecht-Schönzart, and Suzanne C. Bart, Inorg. Chem. 2020, 59, 18461-18468