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Evaluation of coordinating agents with low cost and toxicity in CdSe quantum dots synthesis as an alternative to usual TOPO-TOP

Grant number: 17/20807-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2018
Effective date (End): August 10, 2019
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Chemistry - Physical-Chemistry
Principal Investigator:Laudemir Carlos Varanda
Grantee:Beatriz Mourino de Almeida Prado
Host Institution: Instituto de Química de São Carlos (IQSC). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):18/20600-6 - Synthesis and characterization of all-inorganic metal halide perovskite nanocrystals, BE.EP.IC


Nanoscale inorganic particles have attracted attention in many scientific and technological fields. Cadmium selenide (CdSe) is particularly interesting because it is a semiconductive nanoparticle, known as quantum dots (QD), and due to its specific electronic and optical properties. Organic molecules coordinated onto the inorganic nuclei surface can generate enhanced control over its properties, not to mention that it can increase colloidal and chemical stability and decrease its toxicity. The inorganic core has active effects on optical, electronical and magnetic properties of the nanomaterials, while the coordinated organic capping, which can act as a surfactant, is responsible for properties related to the nanoparticle stability. Many researches have been reported concerning different inorganic structures to propose better control over the nanoparticle size, shape and composition, which enhances the applications possibilities in areas such as electronics, photonics and biomedicine. In the case of semiconductor quantum dots like CdSe and CdTe, the most common method of synthesis is based on the trioctylphosphine oxide (TOPO) and trioctylphosphine (TOP) use, known as TOPO-TOP method. TOPO and TOP are employed as metal coordinating agents and surface ligands during the nanoparticles synthesis, which improves both size and structural control. However, it is an expensive and toxic method, given the nature of these reactants. The main objective of this project is to synthesize CdSe quantum dots alternatively to the TOPO-TOP method to obtain comparable or even superior properties, besides better reproducibility. Metal coordinating agents with low cost and small toxicity will be evaluated, which may replace the usual TOPO and TOP reactants during the quantum dots synthesis.

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