Non-radiative transitions in luminescent materials: from energy surfaces to dynamics

01 October 2017 → 30 September 2020
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Other biological sciences
    • Other natural sciences
luminescent materials dyanmics
Project description

Luminescent materials or phosphors are able to emit light as result of a certain stimulus. This can be the absorption of light itself, mechanical stress or temperature. Due to their particular functional behavior, these materials are found in numerous applications such as lighting, displays, medical imaging… Phosphors are composed of an insulating crystal which is deliberately doped by
metal impurities, activating the luminescent behavior. The luminescence is strongly influenced by additional nonidealities or defects that are often unconsciously present in the crystal such as e.g. missing atoms. These defects can lead to a reduced luminescence efficiency or delayed light
emission (afterglow), effects that can be either desirable or undesirable. The nature of these defects and how they interact with the activating metal atom is not yet understood and the scientific description is limited to some vague generalities or empirical procedures to characterize the associated phenomena.
This project has the ambition to elucidate the origin of these additional effects by calculating the properties of various defects and defect clusters. The stability of different configurations will be assessed, as well as their mutual interaction and interaction with the activator. The calculations are carefully compared to experiments. The obtained knowledge will be used to reinterpret
scientific literature and to design new functional materials by amplifying or suppressing the effects of defects.