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Nano Lett. 2005 Nov;5(11):2287-91.

Core/multishell nanowire heterostructures as multicolor, high-efficiency light-emitting diodes.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138, USA.


We report the growth and characterization of core/multishell nanowire radial heterostructures, and their implementation as efficient and synthetically tunable multicolor nanophotonic sources. Core/multishell nanowires were prepared by metal-organic chemical vapor deposition with an n-GaN core and InxGa1-xN/GaN/p-AlGaN/p-GaN shells, where variation of indium mole fraction is used to tune emission wavelength. Cross-sectional transmission electron microscopy studies reveal that the core/multishell nanowires are dislocation-free single crystals with a triangular morphology. Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy clearly shows shells with distinct chemical compositions, and quantitatively confirms that the thickness and composition of individual shells can be well controlled during synthesis. Electrical measurements show that the p-AlGaN/p-GaN shell structure yields reproducible hole conduction, and electroluminescence measurements demonstrate that in forward bias the core/multishell nanowires function as light-emitting diodes, with tunable emission from 365 to 600 nm and high quantum efficiencies. The ability to synthesize rationally III-nitride core/multishell nanowire heterostructures opens up significant potential for integrated nanoscale photonic systems, including multicolor lasers.

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