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ACS Nano. 2015 Jan 27;9(1):312-9. doi: 10.1021/nn504787y. Epub 2014 Dec 22.

Optical and electrochemical applications of silicon-carbon dots/silicon dioxide nanocomposites.

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Department of Chemistry, National Taiwan University , 1, Section 4, Roosevelt Road, Taipei 10617, Taiwan.


Various colors of photoluminescent SiC-dots/SiO2 prepared through a simple heating process have been employed for optical and electrochemical applications. Blue (B)-, green (G)-, and tan (T)-SiC-dots/SiO2 powders have been prepared from SiC-dots that had been prepared from 3-aminopropyl trimethoxysilane through a hydrothermal route by simply controlling heating at 60 °C for 60 min and 300 °C for 10 and 20 min, respectively. The B-, G-, and T-SiC-dots/SiO2 nanocomposites emit at 455, 534, and 574 nm, respectively, under excitation at 360 nm. B-, G-, and T-SiC-dots/SiO2 glass films show at least seven colors when excited at 360, 460, and 520 nm. Through a heat-induced photoluminescence (PL) change, a representative lithographic pattern of B-SiC-dots/SiO2 films has been fabricated using a near-infrared laser. The B-, G-, and T-SiC-dots/SiO2 also possess high electrocatalytic activity for the oxygen reduction reaction. Having such interesting PL and electrical properties, the stable, low-toxic, and cost-effective B-, G-, and T-SiC-dots/SiO2 nanocomposites show great economic potential in many applications such as light-emitting diodes, photoluminescent windows, and fuel cells.


SiC-dots/SiO2 nanocomposites; colorful glasses; fuel cells; lithographic patterns; photoluminescent carbon dots


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