Organic chemistry lights up

George Malliaras and colleagues at Cornell University have developed a new type of organic semiconductor device that not only displays electroluminescence but also acts as a photovoltaic cell. The device, based on an anthracene derivative and a ruthenium complex is the first example of an ionic junction in this field. The new device displays improved performance and could be fabricated into thin, flexible sheets for a variety of applications. For instance, woven into a beach umbrella, the material could generate electricity to power an mp3 player or to charge up a mobile phone. The material could also be incorporated into clothing or flexible displays.