Author ORCID Identifier

Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation


Arts and Sciences



First Advisor

Dr Kenneth R Graham


Metal halide perovskites have gained interest in optoelectronic applications such as photovoltaics, lasers, LEDs, transistors, and photodetectors due to their excellent semiconducting properties considering their low cost. Metal halide perovskite (HP) photovoltaics have rapidly increased in power conversion efficiency (PCE), which now exceeds 25%. HPs have gained attention in these applications due to their high tolerance towards defects, long charge carrier diffusion lengths, high charge carrier mobility, high optical absorption, and bandgaps that are tunable over a large range. Even though HP photovoltaic PCEs are improved these are still not commercially available due to them showing lower stability and energy loss due to severe charge recombination at the surface and interfaces in the device. Treating the HP surface with surface ligands has become a promising approach to improve photovoltaic performance, defect passivation, and interfacial energetics. In this dissertation, the influence of ammonium functionalized π – conjugated ligands on MAPbI3 perovskite energetics, photovoltaic performance, and interfacial charge transfer is investigated. With the thiophene ligands, a drastic PCE drop was observed for p-i-n devices, and improved PCE was obtained for n-i-p devices. With PDI surface ligands no significant change was observed for photovoltaic performance.

Two-dimensional metal halide perovskites (2D HP) have captured interest in the field due to their improved stability against air, moisture, and light relative to their 3D counterparts. 2D HPs have a layered structure, where the organic spacer cations are sandwiched between layers of inorganic octahedra. This organic layer in 2D HPs adds additional protection against moisture and oxygen ingression and other degradation pathways. These materials are used as the active layer in LEDs and solar cells and as capping layers in 3D HPs. 2D perovskites demonstrate remarkable structural variabilities, where the properties can be modified by changing the layer thickness, the halide anion, and the spacer cation. To make devices with 2D perovskites we need to understand the influence of the organic spacer cations on the optoelectronic properties of these materials. In this work, we investigate the influence of the dipole magnitude and the direction of a series of functionalized PEAI derivatives as organic spacer cations on the ionization energy and the electron affinity of 2D tin halide perovskites. However, determining ionization energy and electron affinity in HPs could be quite difficult as several methods are being used in data interpretation for HPs. In this work, we propose a method to assign the energy levels in 2D HPs by correcting for the instrumental resolution in ultraviolet and inverse photoemission spectroscopy.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

Funding Information

This study was supported by the Department of Energy (Grant number: DE-SC0018208), and National Science Foundation (Grant number: DMR-2102257, NNCI-2025075).

Available for download on Sunday, May 11, 2025