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Luminescence of colloidal CdSe/ZnS nanoparticles: high sensitivity to solvent phase transitions

Andrei Antipov1, Matt Bell1, Mesut Yasar1, Vladimir Mitin1*, William Scharmach2, Mark Swihart2, Aleksandr Verevkin1 and Andrei Sergeev1

Author Affiliations

1 Electrical Engineering Department, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA

2 Chemical and Biological Engineering Department, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2011, 6:142  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-6-142

Published: 14 February 2011


We investigate nanosecond photoluminescence processes in colloidal core/shell CdSe/ZnS nanoparticles dissolved in water and found strong sensitivity of luminescence to the solvent state. Several pronounced changes have been observed in the narrow temperature interval near the water melting point. First of all, the luminescence intensity substantially (approximately 50%) increases near the transition. In a large temperature scale, the energy peak of the photoluminescence decreases with temperature due to temperature dependence of the energy gap. Near the melting point, the peak shows N-type dependence with the maximal changes of approximately 30 meV. The line width increases with temperature and also shows N-type dependence near the melting point. The observed effects are associated with the reconstruction of ligands near the ice/water phase transition.