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Kira Hughes

Colloidal copper-doped semiconductor nanocrystals are attractive materials due to their tunable absorption and photoluminescence (PL) energies and the large effective Stokes shift that occurs upon copper incorporation into the NC lattice. With PL energies well matched for absorption by a silicon photovoltaic, these materials are promising phosphors for applications such as luminescent solar concentrators (LSC). Currently, the maximum achievable quantum yield (QY) of Cu+:CdSe NCs is ~35%, still too low for immediate incorporation into LSCs. Shelling is expected to increase the QY of these materials, but traditional shell-growth syntheses instead extract copper from the NC lattice, ultimately decreasing the copper PL QY. I plan to address these synthetic challenges to obtain bright copper-doped core/shell NCs by taking a novel approach and doping pre-made CdSe/CdS core/shell NCs. Through studying the photophysics of these materials, I will iteratively tailor the synthesis to obtain bright, high quality materials suitable for solar energy applications.

Advisor Daniel Gamelin -Chemistry