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Ligand sensitized strong luminescence from Eu3+-doped LiYF4 nanocrystals: A photon downshifting strategy to increase solar to current conversion efficiency

Abstract

Lanthanide (Ln)-doped nanocrystals generally display low luminescence quantum efficiency due to forbidden nature of the 4f-4f transition as well as possessing low absorption cross sections (~ 10 M−1cm−1 ). Considering the demand for these materials particularly for light emission nd bio imaging applications, it is very important to improve their quantum efficiency. This work demonstrates a strategy to enhance Si solar cell efficiency via sensitization of Eu3+ ions luminescence from colloidal nanocrystals. We have for the first time developed a simple ligand exchange approach to attach 4,4,4-trifluoro-1-phenyl-1,3 butanedione (TPB) to the surface of Eu3+-doped LiYF4 NCs (NCs). Owing to the good overlap between the emission of TPB ligand and the energy levels of Eu3+ ions, an efficient energy transfer takes place from the ligand to Eu3+ ions upon ultraviolet (UV) excitation of the ligand, leading to intense red emission. The sensitization of Eu3+ ions greatly enhanced the quantum yield of Eu3+ ions (~31 %) compared to ~5% via direct excitation of Eu3+ ions (exi = 394 nm) in Eu3+-doped LiYF4 NCs. A device was fabricated by embedding the nanocrystals on Si solar cell to capture the UV photons and convert into visible ones which subsequently creates charge carriers inside the cell. Upon exposure to UV light, the nanocrystals embedded Si solar cell shows overall enhancement in the photocurrent upon excitation under UV radiation.

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Publication details

The article was received on 13 Apr 2017, accepted on 16 Jun 2017 and first published on 16 Jun 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7DT01339F
Citation: Dalton Trans., 2017, Accepted Manuscript
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    Ligand sensitized strong luminescence from Eu3+-doped LiYF4 nanocrystals: A photon downshifting strategy to increase solar to current conversion efficiency

    V. Mahalingam, T. Samanta, S. K. Jana and A. E. Parveen, Dalton Trans., 2017, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C7DT01339F

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