5 years ago

Transition-Metal-Doped NIR-Emitting Silicon Nanocrystals

Transition-Metal-Doped NIR-Emitting Silicon Nanocrystals
Françoise M. Winnik, Sourov Chandra, Naoto Shirahata, Yoshitake Masuda
Impurity-doping in nanocrystals significantly affects their electronic properties and diversifies their applications. Herein, we report the synthesis of transition metal (Mn, Ni, Co, Cu)-doped oleophilic silicon nanocrystals (SiNCs) through hydrolysis/polymerization of triethoxysilane with acidic aqueous metal salt solutions, followed by thermal disproportionation of the resulting gel into a doped-Si/SiO2 composite that, upon HF etching and hydrosilylation with 1-n-octadecene, produces free-standing octadecyl-capped doped SiNCs (diameter≈3 to 8 nm; dopant <0.2 atom %). Metal-doping triggers a red-shift of the SiNC photoluminescence (PL) of up to 270 nm, while maintaining high PL quantum yield (26 % for Co doping). The straight dope on silicon: Metal doping of nanocrystals brings new properties to virgin nanoparticles, as demonstrated for the case of photoluminescent silicon nanocrystals (SiNCs). Inclusion of a few transition metal atoms shifts the emission of SiNCs in the NIR range, opening new opportunities in medical imaging for silicon, a safe and abundant element.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/anie.201700436

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