Direct Measurements of Magnetic Polarons in Cd1-xMnxSe Nanocrystals from Resonant Photoluminescence

W. D. Rice, W. Liu, V. Pinchetti, D. R. Yakovlev, V. I. Klimov, S. A. Crooker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


In semiconductors, quantum confinement can greatly enhance the interaction between band carriers (electrons and holes) and dopant atoms. One manifestation of this enhancement is the increased stability of exciton magnetic polarons in magnetically doped nanostructures. In the limit of very strong 0D confinement that is realized in colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals, a single exciton can exert an effective exchange field Bex on the embedded magnetic dopants that exceeds several tesla. Here we use the very sensitive method of resonant photoluminescence (PL) to directly measure the presence and properties of exciton magnetic polarons in colloidal Cd1-xMnxSe nanocrystals. Despite small Mn2+ concentrations (x = 0.4-1.6%), large polaron binding energies up to ∼26 meV are observed at low temperatures via the substantial Stokes shift between the pump laser and the resonant PL maximum, indicating nearly complete alignment of all Mn2+ spins by Bex. Temperature and magnetic field-dependent studies reveal that Bex ≈ 10 T in these nanocrystals, in good agreement with theoretical estimates. Further, the emission line widths provide direct insight into the statistical fluctuations of the Mn2+ spins. These resonant PL studies provide detailed insight into collective magnetic phenomena, especially in lightly doped nanocrystals where conventional techniques such as nonresonant PL or time-resolved PL provide ambiguous results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3068-3075
Number of pages8
JournalNano letters
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 10 2017


  • Nanocrystal
  • diluted magnetic semiconductor
  • magnetic polaron
  • photoluminescence
  • quantum dot

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering

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