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Nanocrystal Superlattices with Thermally Degradable Hybrid Inorganic−Organic Capping Ligands

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journal contribution
posted on 03.11.2010, 00:00 by Maksym V. Kovalenko, Maryna I. Bodnarchuk, Dmitri V. Talapin
Colloidal metallic and semiconductor nanocrystals (NCs) functionalized with metal chalcogenide complexes (MCCs) have shown a promise for designing materials that combine high carrier mobility with the electronic structure of strongly quantum-confined solids. Here we report a simple and general methodology for switching the repulsive forces responsible for colloidal stabilization of MCC-capped NCs from long-range electrostatic to short-range steric through the formation of tight ionic pairs with cationic surfactants. This noncovalent surface modification remarkably improved the ability of MCC-capped NCs to self-assemble into long-range ordered superlattices. These NCs are highly soluble in nonpolar solvents and compatible with various technologically relevant organic molecules and polymers. The hybrid inorganic−organic coating can be thermally decomposed at significantly lower temperatures compared to those required for removal of conventional organic ligands.