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Issue 12, 2018
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An all-optical single-step process for production of nanometric-sized fluorescent diamonds

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Abstract

Nanodiamonds (NDs) containing negatively charged Nitrogen-Vacancy (NV) centers are promising materials for applications in photonics, quantum computing, and sensing of environmental parameters like temperature, strain and magnetic fields. However, the production of fluorescent NDs remains a technological challenge, requiring a complex multi-step process involving controlled introduction of substitutional nitrogen into the diamond lattice, annealing and fragmentation from macrocrystals to nanocrystals. Here, we report on a single-step, all-optical process for the production of nanometric-sized fluorescent diamonds based on laser ablation of a carbon substrate at low temperature (100 °C) under a nitrogen atmosphere. We demonstrate that this synthesis route yields fluorescent NDs with a concentration of native NV centers controlled by adjusting the experimental ablation conditions. Spin-polarization dependent optical-transitions are observed by optically detected magnetic resonance spectroscopy, thus providing strong evidence of the presence of negatively charged NV centers in the as-grown NDs. Finally, we propose a thermodynamic model able to describe the nucleation of NDs and the formation of NV centers in the present single-step optical process.

Graphical abstract: An all-optical single-step process for production of nanometric-sized fluorescent diamonds

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Publication details

The article was received on 24 Nov 2017, accepted on 20 Feb 2018 and first published on 20 Feb 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7NR08791H
Citation: Nanoscale, 2018,10, 5738-5744
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    An all-optical single-step process for production of nanometric-sized fluorescent diamonds

    L. Basso, F. Gorrini, M. Cazzanelli, N. Bazzanella, A. Bifone and A. Miotello, Nanoscale, 2018, 10, 5738
    DOI: 10.1039/C7NR08791H

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