Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 31231
Photoluminescence Study of Erbium-Mixed Alkylated Silicon Nanocrystals

Authors: Khamael M. Abualnaja, Lidija Šiller, Benjamin R. Horrocks


Alkylated silicon nanocrystals (C11-SiNCs) were prepared successfully by galvanostatic etching of p-Si(100) wafers followed by a thermal hydrosilation reaction of 1-undecene in refluxing toluene in order to extract C11-SiNCs from porous silicon. Erbium trichloride was added to alkylated SiNCs using a simple mixing chemical route. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first investigation on mixing SiNCs with erbium ions (III) by this chemical method. The chemical characterization of C11-SiNCs and their mixtures with Er3+(Er/C11-SiNCs) were carried out using X-ray photoemission spectroscopy (XPS). The optical properties of C11- SiNCs and their mixtures with Er3+ were investigated using Raman spectroscopy and photoluminescence (PL). The erbium mixed alkylated SiNCs shows an orange PL emission peak at around 595 nm that originates from radiative recombination of Si. Er/C11-SiNCs mixture also exhibits a weak PL emission peak at 1536 nm that originates from the intra-4f transition in erbium ions (Er3+). The PL peak of Si in Er/C11-SiNCs mixture is increased in the intensity up to three times as compared to pure C11-SiNCs. The collected data suggest that this chemical mixing route leads instead to a transfer of energy from erbium ions to alkylated SiNCs.

Keywords: Raman spectroscopy, Photoluminescence, silicon nanocrystals, erbium

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 2379


[1] S.K. Ray, S. Maikap, W. Banerjee, S. Das, Nanocrystals for siliconbased light-emitting and memory devices, J. Phys. D-Appl. Phys., 46 (2013).
[2] A. Polman, Erbium implanted thin film photonic materials, Journal of Applied Physics, 82 (1997) 1-39.
[3] A.J. Kenyon, Erbium in silicon, Semicond. Sci. Technol., 20 (2005) R65-R84.
[4] O. Savchyn, P.G. Kik, R.M. Todi, K.R. Coffey, Effect of hydrogen passivation on luminescence-center-mediated Er excitation in Si-rich with and without Si nanocrystals, Physical Review B, 77 (2008) 205438.
[5] H. Steinkemper, S. Fischer, M. Hermle, J.C. Goldschmidt, Stark level analysis of the spectral line shape of electronic transitions in rare earth ions embedded in host crystals, New Journal of Physics, 15 (2013) 053033.
[6] P.W. Atkins, V. Walters, J. De Paula, Physical Chemistry, Macmillan Higher Education, 2006.
[7] R.J. Kashtiban, U. Bangert, I.F. Crowe, M. Halsall, A.J. Harvey, M. Gass, Study of erbium doped silicon nanocrystals in silica, in: R.T. Baker (Ed.) Electron Microscopy and Analysis Group Conference 2009, Iop Publishing Ltd, Bristol, 2010.
[8] L.B. Xu, L. Jin, D.S. Li, D.R. Yang, Sensitization of Er3+ ions in silicon rich oxynitride films: effect of thermal treatments, Opt. Express, 22 (2014) 13022-13028.
[9] L.B. Xu, D.S. Li, L. Jin, L.L. Xiang, F. Wang, D.R. Yang, D.L. Que, Evolution of the sensitized Er3+ emission by silicon nanoclusters and luminescence centers in silicon-rich silica, Nanoscale Res. Lett., 9 (2014).
[10] D.S. Korolev, A.B. Kostyuk, A.I. Belov, A.N. Mikhaylov, Y.A. Dudin, A.I. Bobrov, N.V. Malekhonova, D.A. Pavlov, D.I. Tetelbaum, Influence of the ion synthesis and ion doping regimes on the effect of sensitization of erbium emission by silicon nanoclusters in silicon dioxide films, Phys. Solid State, 55 (2013) 2361-2367.
[11] F. Artizzu, F. Quochi, L. Marchio, E. Sessini, M. Saba, A. Serpe, A. Mura, M.L. Mercuri, G. Bongiovanni, P. Deplano, Fully Efficient Direct Yb-to-Er Energy Transfer at Molecular Level in a Near-Infrared Emitting Heterometallic Trinuclear Quinolinolato Complex, J. Phys. Chem. Lett., 4 (2013) 3062-3066.
[12] H. Ennen, J. Schneider, G. Pomrenke, A. Axmann, 1.54‐μm luminescence of erbium‐implanted III‐V semiconductors and silicon, Applied Physics Letters, 43 (1983) 943-945.
[13] H. Ennen, G. Pomrenke, A. Axmann, K. Eisele, W. Haydl, J. Schneider, 1.54‐μm electroluminescence of erbium‐doped silicon grown by molecular beam epitaxy, Applied Physics Letters, 46 (1985) 381-383.
[14] J.M. Ramirez, F.F. Lupi, Y. Berencen, A. Anopchenko, J.P. Colonna, O. Jambois, J.M. Fedeli, L. Pavesi, N. Prtljaga, P. Rivallin, A. Tengattini, D. Navarro-Urrios, B. Garrido, Er-doped light emitting slot waveguides monolithically integrated in a silicon photonic chip, Nanotechnology, 24 (2013).
[15] M.F. Cerqueira, M. Losurdo, M. Stepikhova, P. Alpuim, G. Andres, A. Kozanecki, M.J. Soares, M. Peres, Photoluminescence of nc-Si:Er thin films obtained by physical and chemical vapour deposition techniques: The effects of microstructure and chemical composition, Thin Solid Films, 517 (2009) 5808-5812.
[16] M.F. Cerqueira, T. Monteiro, M.J. Soares, A. Kozanecki, P. Alpuim, E. Alves, Erbium doped nanocrystalline silicon thin films produced by RF sputtering - annealing effect on the Er emission, physica status solidi (c), 7 (2010) 683-687.
[17] B. Garrido, C. García, P. Pellegrino, D. Navarro-Urrios, N. Daldosso, L. Pavesi, F. Gourbilleau, R. Rizk, Distance dependent interaction as the limiting factor for Si nanocluster to Er energy transfer in silica, Applied Physics Letters, 89 (2006) 163103.
[18] S.A. Denisov, S.A. Matveev, V.Y. Chalkov, V.G. Shengurov, Y.N. Drozdov, M.V. Stepikhova, D.V. Shengurov, Z.F. Krasilnik, Si1-x Ge (x) /Si heterostructures grown by molecular-beam epitaxy on silicon-onsapphire substrates, Semiconductors, 48 (2014) 402-405.
[19] H. Omar, N.K. Sabri, A. Radzi, M. Rusop, S. Abdullah, N.I. Ikhsan, Optical Characterization of Porous Silicon (PS) doped Erbium (Er) using Photoluminescence Spectroscopy, in: M.H. Mamat, Z. Khusaimi, S.A. Bakar, A.M. Nor, T. Soga, M.R. Mahmood (Eds.) Nanoscience, Nanotechnology and Nanoengineering, Trans Tech Publications Ltd, Stafa-Zurich, 2014, pp. 617-621.
[20] R.J. Kashtiban, U. Bangert, I.F. Crowe, M. Halsall, A.J. Harvey, M. Gass, Study of erbium doped silicon nanocrystals in silica, Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 241 (2010) 012097.
[21] M. Fujii, M. Yoshida, S. Hayashi, K. Yamamoto, Photoluminescence from SiO2 films containing Si nanocrystals and Er: Effects of nanocrystalline size on the photoluminescence efficiency of Er3+, Journal of Applied Physics, 84 (1998) 4525-4531.
[22] M. Fujii, M. Yoshida, Y. Kanzawa, S. Hayashi, K. Yamamoto, 1.54 mu m photoluminescence of Er3+ doped into SiO2 films containing Si nanocrystals: Evidence for energy transfer from Si nanocrystals to Er3+, Applied Physics Letters, 71 (1997) 1198-1200.
[23] J. St. John, J.L. Coffer, Y. Chen, R.F. Pinizzotto, Synthesis and Characterization of Discrete Luminescent Erbium Doped Silicon Nanocrystals, Journal of the American Chemical Society, 121 (1999) 1888-1892.
[24] J. Ji, R.A. Senter, L.R. Tessler, D. Back, C.H. Winter, J.L. Coffer, Rare earth doped silicon nanocrystals derived from an erbium amidinate precursor, Nanotechnology, 15 (2004) 643.
[25] P.G. Kik, M.L. Brongersma, A. Polman, Strong exciton-erbium coupling in Si nanocrystal-doped SiO2, Applied Physics Letters, 76 (2000) 2325- 2327.
[26] L.H. Lie, M. Duerdin, E.M. Tuite, A. Houlton, B.R. Horrocks, Preparation and characterisation of luminescent alkylated-silicon quantum dots, Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry, 538–539 (2002) 183-190.
[27] Y. Chao, L. Šiller, S. Krishnamurthy, P.R. Coxon, U. Bangert, M. Gass, L. Kjeldgaard, S.N. Patole, L.H. Lie, N. O'Farrell, T.A. Alsop, A. Houlton, B.R. Horrocks, Evaporation and deposition of alkyl-capped silicon nanocrystals in ultrahigh vacuum, Nat Nano, 2 (2007) 486-489.
[28] F.M. Dickinson, T.A. Alsop, N. Al-Sharif, C.E.M. Berger, H.K. Datta, L. Šiller, Y. Chao, E.M. Tuite, A. Houlton, B.R. Horrocks, Dispersions of alkyl-capped silicon nanocrystals in aqueous media: photoluminescence and ageing, Analyst, 133 (2008) 1573-1580.
[29] Y. Chao, S. Krishnamurthy, M. Montalti, L.H. Lie, A. Houlton, B.R. Horrocks, L. Kjeldgaard, V.R. Dhanak, M.R.C. Hunt, L. Šiller, Reactions and luminescence in passivated Si nanocrystallites induced by vacuum ultraviolet and soft-x-ray photons, Journal of Applied Physics, 98 (2005) 044316.
[30] L. Šiller, S. Krishnamurthy, L. Kjeldgaard, B.R. Horrocks, Y. Chao, A. Houlton, A.K. Chakraborty, M.R.C. Hunt, Core and valence exciton formation in x-ray absorption, x-ray emission and x-ray excited optical luminescence from passivated Si nanocrystals at the Si L 2,3 edge, Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter, 21 (2009) 095005.
[31] Y. Hijikata, H. Yaguchi, M. Yoshikawa, S. Yoshida, Composition analysis of SiO2/SiC interfaces by electron spectroscopic measurements using slope-shaped oxide films, Applied Surface Science, 184 (2001) 161-166.
[32] T.J. Pinnavaia, A. Sayari, Nanoporous Materials II, Elsevier Science, 2000.
[33] L.J. Bellamy, The Infra-red Spectra of Complex Molecules, Chapman and Hall, 1975.
[34] B.C. Smith, Fundamentals of Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy, Taylor & Francis, 1995.
[35] M. Losurdo, M.M. Giangregorio, G. Bruno, D. Yang, E.A. Irene, A.A. Suvorova, M. Saunders, Er2O3 as a high-K dielectric candidate, Applied Physics Letters, 91 (2007) 091914.
[36] M. Losurdo, M.M. Giangregorio, P. Capezzuto, G. Bruno, G. Malandrino, I.L. Fragalà, L. Armelao, D. Barreca, E. Tondello, Structural and Optical Properties of Nanocrystalline Er2O3 Thin Films Deposited by a Versatile Low-Pressure MOCVD Approach, J. Electrochem. Soc., 155 (2008) G44-G50.
[37] H.H. Shen, S.M. Peng, X.G. Long, X.S. Zhou, L. Yang, X.T. Zu, The effect of substrate temperature on the oxidation behavior of erbium thick films, Vacuum, 86 (2012) 1097-1101.
[38] G.A. Bhaduri, R. Little, R.B. Khomane, S.U. Lokhande, B.D. Kulkarni, B.G. Mendis, L. Šiller, Green synthesis of silver nanoparticles using sunlight, Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry, 258 (2013) 1-9.
[39] S.K. Mishra, A.S. Bhattacharyya, P.K.P. Rupa, L.C. Pathak, XPS Studies on Nanocomposite Si-C-N Coatings Deposited by Magnetron Sputtering, Nanosci. Nanotechnol. Lett., 4 (2012) 352-357.
[40] Y.S. Gu, Y.P. Zhang, X.R. Chang, Z.Z. Tian, N.X. Chen, D.X. Shi, X.F. Zhang, L. Yuan, Synthesis and characterization of C3N4 hard films, Sci. China Ser. A-Math. Phys. Astron., 43 (2000) 185-198.
[41] T. Mohanty, N.C. Mishra, A. Pradhan, D. Kanjilal, Luminescence from Si nanocrystal grown in fused silica using keV and MeV beam, Surface and Coatings Technology, 196 (2005) 34-38.
[42] K.A. Littau, P.J. Szajowski, A.J. Muller, A.R. Kortan, L.E. Brus, A luminescent silicon nanocrystal colloid via a high-temperature aerosol reaction, The Journal of Physical Chemistry, 97 (1993) 1224-1230.
[43] N.A. Harun, M.J. Benning, B.R. Horrocks, D.A. Fulton, Gold nanoparticle-enhanced luminescence of silicon quantum dots coencapsulated in polymer nanoparticles, Nanoscale, 5 (2013) 3817-3827.
[44] N.A. Harun, B.R. Horrocks, D.A. Fulton, A miniemulsion polymerization technique for encapsulation of silicon quantum dots in polymer nanoparticles, Nanoscale, 3 (2011) 4733-4741.
[45] Y. Chao, A. Houlton, B.R. Horrocks, M.R.C. Hunt, N.R.J. Poolton, J. Yang, L. Siller, Optical luminescence from alkyl-passivated Si nanocrystals under vacuum ultraviolet excitation: Origin and temperature dependence of the blue and orange emissions, Applied Physics Letters, 88 (2006) 263119-263113.
[46] N.A. Harun, Development of New Silicon Quantum Dots–Polymer Composite Nanoparticles via Miniemulsion Polymerization: Synthesis and Characterizations, in: School of Chemistry, Newcastle University, 2013, pp. 156.
[47] K. Zídek, F. Trojánek, P. Malý, L. Ondi, I. Pelant, K. Dohnalová, L. Šiller, R. Little, B.R. Horrocks, Femtosecond luminescence spectroscopy of core states in silicon nanocrystals, Opt. Express, 18 (2010) 25241-25249.
[48] S.V.J. Lakshman, C.K. Jayasankar, OPTICAL-ABSORPTION SPECTRA OF THE TRIPOSITIVE ERBIUM ION IN CERTAIN ACETATE COMPLEXES, Spectroc. Acta Pt. A-Molec. Biomolec. Spectr., 40 (1984) 695-704.
[49] C. Strohhöfer, A. Polman, Absorption and emission spectroscopy in Er3+–Yb3+ doped aluminum oxide waveguides, Optical Materials, 21 (2003) 705-712.
[50] L. Jin, D. Li, L. Xiang, F. Wang, D. Yang, D. Que, Energy transfer from luminescent centers to Er3+ in erbium doped silicon-rich oxide films, Nanoscale Res. Lett., 8 (2013) 1-6.
[51] G. Franzo, V. Vinciguerra, F. Priolo, The excitation mechanism of rareearth ions in silicon nanocrystals, Appl. Phys. A-Mater. Sci. Process., 69 (1999) 3-12.
[52] P.G. Kik, A. Polman, Exciton–erbium interactions in Si nanocrystaldoped SiO2, Journal of Applied Physics, 88 (2000) 1992-1998.
[53] P.K. Sekhar, A.R. Wilkinson, R.G. Elliman, T.H. Kim, S. Bhansali, Erbium Emission from Nanoengineered Silicon Surface, J. Phys. Chem. C, 112 (2008) 20109-20113.
[54] M.F. Cerqueira, M. Losurdo, T. Monteiro, M. Stepikhova, M.J. Soares, M. Peres, E. Alves, O. Conde, Study of the oxygen role in the photoluminescence of erbium doped nanocrystalline silicon embedded in a silicon amorphous matrix, Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids, 352 (2006) 1148-1151.