Infrared colloidal lead chalcogenide nanocrystals : Synthesis, properties, and photovoltaic applications

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2187-2201
Journal / PublicationNanoscale
Volume4
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 7 Apr 2012
Externally publishedYes

Abstract

Simple solution phase, catalyst-free synthetic approaches that offer monodispersed, well passivated, and non-aggregated colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals have presented many research opportunities not only for fundamental science but also for technological applications. The ability to tune the electrical and optical properties of semiconductor nanocrystals by manipulating the size and shape of the crystals during the colloidal synthesis provides potential benefits to a variety of applications including photovoltaic devices, light-emitting diodes, field effect transistors, biological imaging/labeling, and more. Recent advances in the synthesis and characterization of colloidal lead chalcogenide nanocrystals and the achievements in colloidal PbS or PbSe nanocrystals solar cells have demonstrated the promising application of infrared-emitting colloidal lead chalcogenide nanocrystals in photovoltaic devices. Here, we review recent progress in the synthesis and optical properties of colloidal lead chalcogenide nanocrystals. We focus in particular upon the size- and shape-controlled synthesis of PbS, PbSe, and PbTe nanocrystals by using different precursors and various stabilizing surfactants for the growth of the colloidal nanocrystals. We also summarize recent advancements in the field of colloidal nanocrystals solar cells based on colloidal PbS and PbSe nanocrystals. © 2012 The Royal Society of Chemistry.