Formation of Colloidal InP Nanoplatelets through Rational Synthesis Design

01 October 2018 → 31 December 2022
Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Inorganic chemistry
    • Organic chemistry
    • Theoretical and computational chemistry
    • Other chemical sciences
Project description

Colloidal nanocrystals are becoming more and more prevalent in optical and opto-electronic applications in lighting, energy and life science. This calls for a continuous, rapid progress of the state-of-the-art in chemical synthesis, in particular to meet the RoHS directive on heavy metals in terms of material composition, and to further improve their optical properties with targeted nanocrystal sizes and shapes. This project meets these demands with the development of a new class of nanocrystals, namely highly fluorescent 2D indium phosphide (InP) nanoplatelets. A rational design of such a synthesis requires several steps to be explored. First we plan a combined experimental and theoretical effort to better understand the nanocrystal nucleation and growth mechanism. A second part of the project will focus on the nature of the nanocrystal surface. A better understanding of synthesis
mechanism and surface chemistry will yield well-defined, size-controlled InP nanocrystals. Both aspects are intimately linked to the final shape control. Indeed, as we understand how the nanocrystal surfaces are terminated, we will be able to steer their respective areas into the direction of laterally extended, thin and atomically flat 2D nanoplatelets. With the 2D InP nanocrystals we aim to unlock a new generation of bright nano-emitters that display superior optical properties compared to current spherical InP quantum dots, and one day may replace current cadmium-based nanocrystal technology.