Controlling the crystallization and morphology of perovskite films is crucial for the fabrication of high-efficiency perovskite solar cells. For the first time, we investigate the formation mechanism of the drop-cast perovskite film from its precursor solution, PbCl 2 and CH 3 NH 3 I in N,N-dimethylformamide, to a crystalline CH 3 NH 3 PbI 3-x Cl x film at different substrate temperatures from 70 to 180 °C in ambient air and humidity. We employed an in situ grazing-incidence wide-angle X-ray scattering (GIWAXS) technique for this study. When the substrate temperature is at or below 100 °C, the perovskite film is formed in three stages: the initial solution stage, transition-to-solid film stage, and transformation stage from intermediates into a crystalline perovskite film. In each stage, the multiple routes for phase transformations are preceded concurrently. However, when the substrate temperature is increased from 100 to 180 °C, the formation mechanism of the perovskite film is changed from the "multistage formation mechanism" to the "direct formation mechanism". The proposed mechanism has been applied to understand the formation of a perovskite film containing an additive. The result of this study provides a fundamental understanding of the functions of the solvent and additive in the solution and transition states to the crystalline film. It provides useful knowledge to design and fabricate crystalline perovskite films for high-efficiency solar cells.
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