Brightening of carbon nanotube photoluminescence through the incorporation of sp 3 defects

Yanmei Piao, Brendan Meany, Lyndsey R. Powell, Nicholas Valley, Hyejin Kwon, George C Schatz, Yuhuang Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

158 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Semiconducting carbon nanotubes promise a broad range of potential applications in optoelectronics and imaging, but their photon-conversion efficiency is relatively low. Quantum theory suggests that nanotube photoluminescence is intrinsically inefficient because of low-lying 'dark' exciton states. Here we demonstrate the significant brightening of nanotube photoluminescence (up to 28-fold) through the creation of an optically allowed defect state that resides below the predicted energy level of the dark excitons. Emission from this new state generates a photoluminescence peak that is red-shifted by as much as 254 meV from the nanotube's original excitonic transition. We also found that the attachment of electron-withdrawing substituents to carbon nanotubes systematically drives this defect state further down the energy ladder. Our experiments show that the material's photoluminescence quantum yield increases exponentially as a function of the shifted emission energy. This work lays the foundation for chemical control of defect quantum states in low-dimensional carbon materials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)840-845
Number of pages6
JournalNature Chemistry
Volume5
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013

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Carbon Nanotubes
Carbon nanotubes
Photoluminescence
Nanotubes
Defects
Excitons
Quantum theory
Ladders
Quantum yield
Optoelectronic devices
Electron energy levels
Conversion efficiency
Carbon
Photons
Imaging techniques
Electrons
Experiments
LDS 751

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)

Cite this

Brightening of carbon nanotube photoluminescence through the incorporation of sp 3 defects. / Piao, Yanmei; Meany, Brendan; Powell, Lyndsey R.; Valley, Nicholas; Kwon, Hyejin; Schatz, George C; Wang, Yuhuang.

In: Nature Chemistry, Vol. 5, No. 10, 10.2013, p. 840-845.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Piao, Yanmei ; Meany, Brendan ; Powell, Lyndsey R. ; Valley, Nicholas ; Kwon, Hyejin ; Schatz, George C ; Wang, Yuhuang. / Brightening of carbon nanotube photoluminescence through the incorporation of sp 3 defects. In: Nature Chemistry. 2013 ; Vol. 5, No. 10. pp. 840-845.
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