An one-pot synthesis of aqueous ZnSe:Cu nanocrystals (NCs) is realized in aqueous solution by a facile yet efficient hydrothermal technique. The dopant emission spectrum of the NCs is tunable, spanning a wide range from 438 to 543 nm. Room-temperature quantum yield for the NCs prepared at the optimal conditions reaches as high as 20% without any post-treatment. The ZnSe:Cu NCs prepared in a neutral aqueous solution (pH=8) are remarkably stable and exhibit comparatively high photoluminescent quantum yield (PL QY) as high as 17%. First-principles pseudopotential calculations using plane-wave basis functions have been performed. The formation energies of copper ions occupied in the interstitial octahedron and substitutional tetrahedral Zn2+ sites have been calculated. The occupation of copper ions in the interstitial octahedral site is found to be more thermodynamics-facilitated by -0.98 eV. The density of state analysis indicates that the Cu-related emission is primary dominated by the substitutional tetrahedral Cu ions, and the large dopant related emission width of ZnSe:Cu NCs originated from the corresponding Cu 3d impurity band.
- Aqueous synthesis
- Cu:ZnSe NCs
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Condensed Matter Physics