Photoluminescence and photoabsorption blueshift of nanostructured ZnO: Skin-depth quantum trapping and electron-phonon coupling

Li, J. W.; Liu, X. J.; Yang, L. W.; Zhou, Z. F.; Xie, G. F.; Pan, Y.; Wang, X. H.; Zhou, J.; Li, L. T.; Likun Pan; Zhuo Sun; Sun, Chang Q.
July 2009
Applied Physics Letters;7/20/2009, Vol. 95 Issue 3, p031906
Academic Journal
Although the size- and shape-induced blueshift in the photoluminescence and photoabsorption of nanostructured ZnO has been extensively investigated, the underlying mechanism remains yet unclear. Here we show that theoretical reproduction of the observed trends clarifies that the blueshift originates from the Hamiltonian perturbation due to the broken-bond-induced local strain and quantum trapping and electron-phonon coupling in the surface skin up to two atomic layers in depth while bonds in the core interior retain their bulk nature. The extent of the blue shift depends on the tunable fraction of undercoordinated atoms in the surface skin. Therefore, the quantum confinement effect is indeed more “superficial” than first thought [H. Winn, OE Mag. 8, 10 (2005)].


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