A team from the University of Texas at Austin researchers and the University of California, Riverside have found a way to produce energy transfer phenomenon between silicon and organic, carbon-based molecules in a long breakthrough hypothesized that …
nanocrystals of silicon are formed by a silane gas in a plasma process. Credit: Lorenzo Mangolini / UC Riverside
A team from the University of Texas at Austin researchers and the University of California, Riverside have found a way to produce energy transfer phenomenon between silicon and organic, carbon-based molecules in a long breakthrough hypothesized that has consequences for the storage of information in quantum computing, the conversion of solar energy, and medical imaging. The research is described in a paper in the journal Nature Chemistry.
Silicon is one of the most abundant materials on earth and an essential element in all semiconductors that power our computers in the cells used in nearly all solar panels. For all its capabilities, however, silicon has problems in converting light into electricity. The different colors of light are made of photons, particles that carry energy from light. Silicon can efficiently convert the red photons into electricity, but with blue photons, which carry twice the energy red photons, silicon loses much of the energy as heat.
The new discovery provides scientists a way to increase silicon efficiency by pairing with a carbon-based material that converts blue photons into pairs of red photons that can be more effectively used by silicon. The hybrid material may also be modified to run in opposite direction, taking the red light and convert light blue, which has implications for the medical treatment and quantum computing.
Transfer of silicon-to-energy molecule dextral discs upward photon conversion. Credit: Sean Roberts, the University of Texas at Austin
“The organic molecule we silicon associated with a type of carbon called anthracene ashes. It is essentially the soot “said Sean Roberts, assistant professor of chemistry UT Austin. The document discloses a chemical bonding method of the silicon anthracene, creating a molecular supply line which enables the transfer of energy between the silicon and the like substance ashes. “We can now fine-tune the material to react to different light wavelengths. Imagine, for quantum computing, being able to adjust and optimize a material converting a blue photon into two red photons or two photons in a blue red. It is perfect for the storage of information “.
For four decades, scientists have speculated that the combination of silicon with a type of organic material that better absorbs blue and green light could effectively be the key to improving the ability of silicon to convert light into electricity. But simply superimposing the two materials made the expected “spin-triplet exciton transfer,” a special kind of energy transfer from the carbon-based material to silicon, necessary to achieve that objective. Scientists Roberts and materials at UC Riverside describe how they broke into the impasse with tiny chemical son connection that silicon nanocrystals anthracene, producing the expected energy transfer of them for the first time.
A green laser light of lower energy passes through the quantum dots of silicon, the silicon quantum dots reissue, or upconverted to a higher energy blue light. Credit: Lorenzo Mangolini & Lee Ming Tang / UCR
“The challenge was to make pairs of electrons excited from these organic materials and silicon. It can be done simply by dropping one over the other, “says Roberts. “It is necessary to construct a new type of chemical interface between the silicon and the material to allow them to communicate electronically. ”
Roberts and his graduate student Emily Raulerson measured the effect in a molecule designed to bind to a silicon nanocrystal, innovation collaborators Lee Ming Tang, Lorenzo and Pan Xi Mangolini
“We can use this chemistry to create materials that absorb and emit any color of light,” said Raulerson, who says that, with further fine-tuning, similar silicon nanocrystals tethered to a molecule could generate a variety of applications, from battery-less night-vision goggles to new miniature electronics.
Other highly efficient processes of this sort, called photon up-conversion, previously relied on toxic materials. As the new approach uses exclusively non-toxic materials, it opens the door for applications in human medicine, bioimaging and environmentally sustainable technologies, something that Roberts and fellow UT Austin chemist Michael Rose are working towards.
At UC Riverside, Tang’s lab pioneered how to attach the organic molecules to the silicon nanoparticles, and Mangolini’s group engineered the silicon nanocrystals.
“The novelty is really how to get the two parts of this structure—the organic molecules and the quantum confined silicon nanocrystals—to work together,” said Mangolini, an associate professor of mechanical engineering. “We are the first group to really put the two together.”
The paper’s other authors include Devin Coleman and Carter Gerke of UC Riverside.
— Johnson Hor (@johnsonhor) December 4, 2019
Let’s play new games with protons.https://t.co/qRWvXYiS3Y
— Alberto J. Roldan-Piraces (@j_piraces) December 3, 2019
— timworld (@timworld4) December 3, 2019
This is a syndicated post. Read the original post at Source link .