Mechanical softness and deformability underpin most of the advantages offered by semiconducting polymers. A detailed understanding of the mechanical properties of these materials is crucial for the design and manufacturing of robust, thin-film devices such as solar cells, displays, and sensors. The mechanical behavior of polymers is a complex function of many interrelated factors that span multiple scales, ranging from molecular structure, to microstructural morphology, and device geometry. This thesis builds a comprehensive understanding of the thermomechanical properties of polymeric semiconductors through the development and experimental-validation of computational methods for mechanical simulation. A predictive computational methodology is designed and encapsulated into open-sourced software for automating molecular dynamics simulations on modern supercomputing hardware. These simulations are used to explore the role of molecular structure/weight and processing conditions on solid-state morphology and thermomechanical behavior. Experimental characterization is employed to test these predictions—including the development of simple, new techniques for rigorously characterizing thermal transitions and fracture mechanics of thin films.
|Advisor:||Lipomi, Darren J.|
|Commitee:||Gilson, Michael K., Meng, Ying Shirley, Ng, Tse Nga, Ong, Shyue Ping|
|School:||University of California, San Diego|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-B 79/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Chemical engineering, Molecular physics, Materials science|
|Keywords:||Mechanical properties, Molecular dynamics, Organic electronics, Semiconducting polymers, Stretchable electronics, Thin films|
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