Bismuth Doping of Germanium Nanocrystals through Colloidal Chemistry

Katayoun Tabatabaei, Haipeng Lu, Bradley M. Nolan, Xi Cen, Cliff E. McCold, Xinming Zhang, Richard L. Brutchey, Klaus Van Benthem, Joshua Hihath, Susan M. Kauzlarich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Nanogermanium is a material that has great potential for technological applications, and doped and alloyed Ge nanocrystals (NCs) are actively being considered. New alloys and compositions are possible in colloidal synthesis because the reactions are kinetically rather than thermodynamically controlled. Most of the Group V elements have been shown to be n-type dopants in Ge to increase carrier concentration; however, thermodynamically, Bi shows no solubility in crystalline Ge. Bi-doped Ge NCs were synthesized for the first time in a microwave-assisted solution route. The oleylamine capping ligand can be replaced by dodecanethiol without loss of Bi. A positive correlation between the lattice parameter and the concentration of Bi content (0.5-2.0 mol %) is shown via powder X-ray diffraction and selected area electron diffraction. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning TEM, and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectroscopy are consistent with the Bi solubility up to 2 mol %. The NC size increases with increasing amount of bismuth iodide employed in the reaction. Absorption data show that the band gap of the Bi-doped Ge NCs is consistent with the NC size. This work shows that a new element can be doped into Ge NCs via a microwave-assisted route in amounts as high as 1-2 mol %, which leads to increased carriers. Colloidal chemistry provides an inroad to new materials not accessible via other means.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7353-7363
Number of pages11
JournalChemistry of Materials
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 12 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Materials Chemistry


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