Photoswitchable organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) with embedded photochromic materials are considered as a promising platform for development of organic optical memory devices. Unfortunately, the operational mechanism of these devices and guidelines for selection of light-sensitive materials are still poorly explored. In the present work, a series of photochromic dihetarylethenes with a cyclopentenone bridge moiety were investigated as a dielectric/semiconductor interlayer in the structure of photoswitchable OFETs. It was shown that the electrical performance and stability of the devices can be tuned by variation of the substituents in the structure of the photochromic material. In particular, it was found that dihetarylethenes with donor substituents demonstrated the best light-induced switching effects (wider memory windows and higher switching coefficients) in the devices. The operation mechanism of the light-triggered memory devices was proposed based on the differential in situ Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy data and regression analysis of the threshold voltage-programming time experimental dependencies. The established relationships will facilitate further rational design of new photochromic materials, thus paving a way to fast and durable organic optical memories and memory transistors (memristors).
- memory devices
- optical memory
- organic field-effect transistors