Reversible multicolor chromism in layered formamidinium metal halide perovskites

Bryan A. Rosales, Laura E. Mundt, Taylor G. Allen, David T. Moore, Kevin J. Prince, Colin A. Wolden, Garry Rumbles, Laura T. Schelhas, Lance M. Wheeler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Metal halide perovskites feature crystalline-like electronic band structures and liquid-like physical properties. The crystal–liquid duality enables optoelectronic devices with unprecedented performance and a unique opportunity to chemically manipulate the structure with low energy input. In this work, we leverage the low formation energy of metal halide perovskites to demonstrate multicolor reversible chromism. We synthesized layered Ruddlesden-Popper FAn+1PbnX3n+1 (FA = formamidinium, X = I, Br; n = number of layers = 1, 2, 3 … ∞) and reversibly tune the dimensionality (n) by modulating the strength and number of H-bonds in the system. H-bonding was controlled by exposure to solvent vapor (solvatochromism) or temperature change (thermochromism), which shuttles FAX salt pairs between the FAn+1PbnX3n+1 domains and adjacent FAX “reservoir” domains. Unlike traditional chromic materials that only offer a single-color transition, FAn+1PbnX3n+1 films reversibly switch between multiple colors including yellow, orange, red, brown, and white/colorless. Each colored phase exhibits distinct optoelectronic properties characteristic of 2D superlattice materials with tunable quantum well thickness.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5234
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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