Issue 6, 2015

Probing the nature of upconversion nanocrystals: instrumentation matters


Probing the nature of nanocrystalline materials such as the surface state, crystal structure, morphology, composition, optical and magnetic characteristics is a crucial step in understanding their chemical and physical performance and in exploring their potential applications. Upconversion nanocrystals have recently attracted remarkable interest due to their unique nonlinear optical properties capable of converting incident near-infrared photons to visible and even ultraviolet emissions. These optical nanomaterials also hold great promise for a broad range of applications spanning from biolabeling to optoelectronic devices. In this review, we overview the instrumentation techniques commonly utilized for the characterization of upconversion nanocrystals. A considerable emphasis is placed on the analytical tools for probing the optical properties of the luminescent nanocrystals. The advantages and limitations of each analytical technique are compared in an effort to provide a general guideline, allowing optimal conditions to be employed for the characterization of such nanocrystals. Parallel efforts are devoted to new strategies that utilize a combination of advanced emerging tools to characterize such nanosized phosphors.

Graphical abstract: Probing the nature of upconversion nanocrystals: instrumentation matters

Article information

Article type
Review Article
25 Oct 2014
First published
19 Feb 2015
This article is Open Access
Creative Commons BY license

Chem. Soc. Rev., 2015,44, 1479-1508

Probing the nature of upconversion nanocrystals: instrumentation matters

X. Liu, R. Deng, Y. Zhang, Y. Wang, H. Chang, L. Huang and X. Liu, Chem. Soc. Rev., 2015, 44, 1479 DOI: 10.1039/C4CS00356J

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