Composite materials useful for devices such as photoelectrochemical solar cells include a substrate, a metal oxide film on the substrate, nanocrystalline quantum dots (NQDs) of lead sulfide, lead selenide, and lead telluride, and linkers that attach the NQDs to the metal oxide film. Suitable linkers preserve the 1s absorption peak of the NQDs. A suitable linker has a general structure A-B-C where A is a chemical group adapted for binding to a MO.sub.x and C is a chemical group adapted for binding to a NQD and B is a divalent, rigid, or semi-rigid organic spacer moiety. Other linkers that preserve the 1s absorption peak may also be used.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERAL RIGHTS
This invention was made with government support under Contract No. DE-AC52-06NA25396 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy and made under CRADA number LA08C10583 with the SHARP Corporation. The government has certain rights in the invention.