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Synthesis of super bright indium phosphide colloidal quantum dots through thermal diffusion

Clarke, Mitchell T.; Viscomi, Francesco Narda; Chamberlain, Thomas W.; Hondow, Nicole; Adawi, Ali M.; Sturge, Justin; Erwin, Steven C.; Bouillard, Jean Sebastien G.; Tamang, Sudarsan; Stasiuk, Graeme J.


Mitchell T. Clarke

Francesco Narda Viscomi

Thomas W. Chamberlain

Nicole Hondow

Steven C. Erwin

Sudarsan Tamang

Graeme J. Stasiuk


© 2019, The Author(s). Indium phosphide based quantum dots have emerged in recent years as alternatives to traditional heavy metal (cadmium, lead) based materials suitable for biomedical application due to their non-toxic nature. The major barrier to this application, is their low photoluminescent quantum yield in aqueous environments (typically < 5%). Here we present a synthetic method for InP/ZnS quantum dots, utilizing a controlled cooling step for equilibration of zinc sulfide across the core, resulting in a photoluminescent quantum yield as high as 85% in organic solvent and 57% in aqueous media. To the best of our knowledge, this is the highest reported for indium phosphide quantum dots. DFT calculations reveal the enhancement in quantum yield is achieved by redistribution of zinc sulfide across the indium phosphide core through thermal diffusion. By eliminating the need for a glove box and relying on Schlenk line techniques, we introduce a widely accessible method for quantum dots with a realistic potential for improved biomedical applications.


Clarke, M. T., Viscomi, F. N., Chamberlain, T. W., Hondow, N., Adawi, A. M., Sturge, J., …Stasiuk, G. J. (2019). Synthesis of super bright indium phosphide colloidal quantum dots through thermal diffusion. Communications Chemistry, 2(1), Article 36.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 1, 2019
Online Publication Date Mar 22, 2019
Publication Date 2019-12
Deposit Date Mar 26, 2019
Publicly Available Date Mar 27, 2019
Journal Communications Chemistry
Print ISSN 2399-3669
Electronic ISSN 2399-3669
Publisher Nature Research (part of Springer Nature)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 2
Issue 1
Article Number 36
Keywords Optical materials; Quantum dots
Public URL
Publisher URL


Published article (3.4 Mb)

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© The Author(s) 2019

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