Nanocrystal-size selective spectroscopy in SnO2:Eu3+ semiconductor quantum dots

Yanes, A. C.; Del Castillo, J.; Torres, M.; Peraza, J.; Rodríguez, V. D.; Méndez-Ramos, J.
September 2004
Applied Physics Letters;9/20/2004, Vol. 85 Issue 12, p2343
Academic Journal
Glass ceramics of composition 95SiO2-5SnO2 doped with 0.4 mol% Eu3+ have been prepared by thermal treatment of sol-gel glasses. The segregated SnO2 nanocrystals present a mean size comparable to the bulk exciton Bohr radius (about 2.4 nm), corresponding to a wide band-gap quantum-dot system in an insulator SiO2 glass. A fraction of the Eu3+ ions is incorporated to the SnO2 nanocrystals in the process. In these strong confinement conditions, the energy gap presents a high dependence on the nanocrystal size. Taking advantage of this effect, it has been possible to excite selectively the Eu3+ ions located in the SnO2 nanocrystals, by energy transfer from the host, obtaining emission spectra that depend on the nanocrystal size. The Eu3+ ions environment in small nanocrystals (radius under 2 nm) are very distorted, meanwhile they are like crystalline for nanocrystals with a radius of some nanometers.


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