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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/S003126/1
Title: Luminescent Conjugated Polymers for Energy Materials
Principal Investigator: Bronstein, Dr H
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Chemistry
Organisation: University of Cambridge
Scheme: EPSRC Fellowship
Starts: 30 April 2019 Ends: 29 April 2024 Value (£): 1,216,002
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Light-Matter Interactions Materials Characterisation
Materials Synthesis & Growth
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Energy
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
12 Sep 2018 EPSRC Physical Sciences - September 2018 Announced
16 Oct 2018 EPSRC Physical Sciences Fellowship Interview Panel 17 October 2018 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
The development of new materials for energy applications is of utmost importance both nationally and internationally in order to establish energy generation, storage and usage in a secure and environmentally friendly manner.

Conjugated polymers have been successfully applied to virtually all aspects of energy materials with promising results but so far their efficiency and performance has generally failed to match those of competing technologies. The origin of their poorer performance can generally be traced back to their low luminescence efficiencies which results in large amounts of energy being lost as waste heat. This is particularly evident in applications where there is a conversion from light to electricity (e.g. solar cells), or the reverse process (e.g. light emitting devices).

This proposal will deliver two new materials platforms which will drastically enhance the luminescence efficiency of conjugated polymers, both in neat films and in blends substantially increasing their performance and allowing for them to be used in the next generation of energy materials applications.

The two main strategies that will be employed to achieve this will be to i) encapsulate the conjugated polymer backbone such that low energy non-emissive aggregate species cannot form and ii) the creation of polymers with narrow singlet-triplet energy gaps which can convert 'dark' triplets into 'bright' singlets through reverse intersystem crossing. Therefore, through the combination of precise interchain and energetic manipulation we will eliminate non-radiative loss mechanisms in conjugated polymers. These materials will then be implemented into a wide variety of energy applications such as solar cells, light emitting diodes, light emitting transistors and sensors for battery applications. Additionally, these materials will allow for advancements in virtually all conjugated polymer applications such as fluorescence imaging, photodynamic therapy, photocatalysis and bioelectronics.

These two new materials platforms will thus deliver fundamental scientific advances in the field of conjugated polymer design which will result in a new generation of high performance, low loss energy applications with ramifications throughout all fields where there is light-matter interaction.

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