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How Trap States Affect Charge Carrier Dynamics of CdSe and InP Quantum Dots: Visualization through Complexation with Viologen

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journal contribution
posted on 2018-09-10, 00:00 authored by Anoop Thomas, K. Sandeep, Sanoop Mambully Somasundaran, K. George Thomas
The depth of surface trap states in semiconductor quantum dots (QDs) is influenced by the degree of covalency, which in turn affects the charge recombination process in hybrid donor–acceptor systems. By taking relatively ionic cadmium selenide (CdSe) QDs with shallow trap states and covalent indium phosphide (InP) QDs having deep trap states as examples, the charge-transfer dynamics are explored using viologen derivative as an electron acceptor. Light-induced electron transfer in a 1:1 stoichiometric complex of both the donor–acceptor systems occurs in a picosecond time scale. The presence of deep hole trap states in InP QDs retards the charge recombination to a submillisecond time scale, which is 7 orders of magnitude lower than that in CdSe QDs in homogeneous solutions. The immobile quenchers in the quenching sphere of InP further stabilize the electron-transfer products to seconds through charge hopping, which extends the potential of these systems for charge-transfer and transport applications in photovoltaics.