Ligand shell size effects on one- and two-photon excitation fluorescence of zwitterion functionalized gold nanoclusters†
Gold nanoclusters (Au NCs) are an emerging class of luminescent nanomaterials but still suffer from moderate photoluminescence quantum yields. Recent efforts have focused on tailoring their emission properties. Introducing zwitterionic ligands to cap the metallic kernel is an efficient approach to enhance their one-photon excitation fluorescence intensity. In this work, we extend this concept to the nonlinear optical regime, i.e., two-photon excitation fluorescence. For a proper comparison between theory and experiment, both ligand and solvent effects should be considered. The effects of ligand shell size and of aqueous solvent on the optical properties of zwitterion functionalized gold nanoclusters have been studied by performing quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics (QM/MM) simulations.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2019 PCCP HOT Articles