Rapid facile synthesis of Cu2ZnSnS4 nanocrystals
Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) nanocrystals were synthesized via thermolysis of single-source cation and sulfur precursors copper, zinc and tin diethyldithiocarbamates. The average nanocrystal size could be tuned between 2 nm and 40 nm, by varying the synthesis temperature between 150 °C and 340 °C. The synthesis is rapid and is completed in less than 10 minutes. Characterization by X-ray diffraction, Raman spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy confirm that the nanocrystals are nominally stoichiometric kesterite CZTS. The ∼2 nm nanocrystals synthesized at 150 °C exhibit quantum confinement, with a band gap of 1.67 eV. Larger nanocrystals have the expected bulk CZTS band gap of 1.5 eV. Several micron thick films deposited by drop casting colloidal dispersions of ∼40 nm CZTS nanocrystals were crack-free, while those cast using 5 nm nanocrystals had micron-scale cracks.