Influence of composition and structure on the thermal quenching of the 5d–4f emission of Eu2+ doped M–Si–N (M = alkali, alkaline earth, rare earth) nitridosilicates†
Experimental data from literature on the thermal quenching of the Eu2+ 5d–4f emission in the MxSiyNz (M = alkali, alkaline earth or rare earth) nitridosilicates have been collected and evaluated. No clear correlation was observed between the activation energy for thermal quenching and the Stokes shift, suggesting that non-radiative relaxation via a thermally excited cross-over from the 5d excited state to the 4f ground state is not the main reason for thermal quenching in the nitridosilicates. Based on literature data on rare-earth charge transfer transitions, host-lattice bandgap and Eu2+ 5d–4f emission energy, the energy difference between the Eu2+ 5d level and the bottom of the host-lattice conduction band has been determined. This energy difference correlates fairly well with the quenching temperature, suggesting that thermal ionization of the 5d electron to the conduction band is responsible for the thermal quenching of the Eu2+ 5d–4f emission in the nitridosilicates. The energy difference between the lowest 5d level and the bottom of the conduction band, and consequently the quenching temperature, increases with increasing Si/N ratio of the nitridosilicates. From this, it is concluded that the combined effect of the larger Stokes shift and the raise in energy of the bottom of the host lattice conduction band with increasing Si/N ratio is stronger than the decrease of the centroid shift and crystal field splitting of the Eu2+ 5d level.
- This article is part of the themed collections: 2019 Journal of Materials Chemistry C HOT Papers and International Year of the Periodic Table : Lanthanides for Precision Therapy and Beyond