By achieving the synthesis of a novel nanohybrid structure by means of the pulsed laser ablation (PLA) technique, Professor My Ali El Khakani and his team paved the way for a new generation of optoelectronic materials.
The combination of carbon nanotubes and lead sulfide (PbS) nanoparticles was performed using an effective and relatively simple process that offers considerable latitude for creating other nanohybrids for a variety of applications. The INRS Énergie Matériaux Télécommunications Research Centre researcher's work, published in the renowned journal Advanced Materials, presents very promising prospects for the development of third-generation solar devices, fast photodetectors, and optoelectronic switches.
In recent years, research on the photoelectronic properties of semiconductor nanoparticles, such as PbS, has been growing. The coupling of these nanoparticles with carbon nanotubes is a promising strategy for effectively generating photocurrent. The synthesis methods used by other research teams had significant limitations. "When chemically synthesizing nanohybrids, researchers used ligands, which prevented nanoparticle agglomeration, on one hand, but significantly affected the charge transfer dynamics from nanoparticles to nanotubes," said Professor El Khakani. Ligands reduce photoresponse efficiency and increase the reaction time—two effects that were not observed in nanohybrids produced by PLA since PbS is in direct atomic contact with the nanotubes' surafce.
"At the beginning, we didn't know if the nanohybrids would form in such a way as to enable their effective use for photodetection," said Ibrahima Ka, an INRS doctoral student working under the supervision of Professor El Khakani and co-supervised by Professor Dongling Ma. "By optimizing our approach, we developed nanohybrids whose photoactivity can be almost tailored at will." By integrating the new nanohybrid material into functional photoconductive devices, the researchers were pleased to demonstrate its strong photoresponse, which overpasses the results obtained by other methods. Thus, they have been able to achieve photoresponse values as high as 670% at 633 nm and 1350% at 405 nm under conditions where other nanohybrids did not exceed 37%. Furthermore, when the material is illuminated by a laser, the photocurrent response time is 1,000 to 100,000 times faster than those reported to date for other nanohybrids.
The PLA synthesis process produces very pure nanostructures and provides greater control over nanohybrid characteristics. Professor El Khakani's results demonstrate the enormous potential of these carbon nanotubes with PbS quantum dots.
About this publication
The article entitled "Pulsed Laser Ablation based Direct Synthesis of Single-Wall Carbon Nanotube/PbS Quantum Dot Nanohybrids Exhibiting Strong, Spectrally Wide and Fast Photoresponse" was published in the journal Advanced Materials on December 11, 2012, (Vol. 24, pp. 6289) and selected for the journal's frontispiece. The research of My Ali El Khakani, a professor and researcher at INRS's Énergie Matériaux Télécommunications Research Centre, was made possible by the financial support of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the Fonds de recherche du Québec Nature and Technology fund, as well as support from Plasma-Québec's strategic network and Nano-Québec.
Institut national de recherche scientifique (INRS) is research intensive university which offers graduate level training. It ranks first in Canada for research intensity (average grant funding per faculty member). INRS brings together some 150 professors and close to 700 students and postdoctoral fellows at its four centres in Montreal, Quebec City, Laval, and Varennes. Its applied and fundamental research is essential to the advancement of science in Quebec and internationally, even as it plays a key role in the development of concrete solutions to the problems faced by our society.
Source: Stéphanie Thibault, Communications AdvisorCommunications and Public Affairs Department
Stéphanie Thibault | EurekAlert!
New materials: Growing polymer pelts
19.11.2018 | Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT)
Why geckos can stick to walls
19.11.2018 | Jacobs University Bremen gGmbH
Max Planck researchers revel the nano-structure of molecular trains and the reason for smooth transport in cellular antennas.
Moving around, sensing the extracellular environment, and signaling to other cells are important for a cell to function properly. Responsible for those tasks...
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.
Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
19.11.2018 | Event News
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
20.11.2018 | Life Sciences
20.11.2018 | Life Sciences
20.11.2018 | Physics and Astronomy