Novel Class of Nanohybrids for Construction of Light Harvesting Systems
Semiconducting single wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) have unique electronic and optical properties for diverse optoelectronic applications, including photovoltaics, photodetectors and photoswitches. SWCNT-porphyrin molecular complexes are promising candidates for light harvesting applications, due to their long-lived charge separated states and efficient charge-transport behavior of SWCNTs. In the natural light-harvesting complexes, the electron transfer from the porphyrin pigment to the reaction center is triggered to drive photosynthesis. Sophisticated self-organization of the natural porphyrin photosystems serves as a model for artificial photosynthetic systems that require efficient energy and electron transfers. Accordingly, the synthesis and supramolecular self-assembly of a variety of porphyrin pigments have been widely explored with the aim of constructing efficient photochemical and optoelectronic devices. However, it is challenging and time-consuming to produce such complex supramolecules in a reasonable yield.
A University of Colroado research team led by Wei Zhang has developed a novel strategy en route to a new class of nano-hybrids to overcome the challenges in construction of light harvesting systems.
A University of Colroado research team led by Wei Zhang has developed a novel strategy en route to a new class of nano-hybrids to overcome the challenges in construction of light harvesting systems. The team encapsulated C60 into a shape-persistent covalent organic poly-hedron (COP) to afford C60@COP core-shell complexes. These complexes then bind to the surface of SWCNTs in a “side-to-face” fashion through π-π stacking interactions. The assembled C60@COP/SWCNT nanohybrids proved an integrative component for the construction of solar cell devices. By constructing a solar cell comprised of a spun-cast photoactive thin film of C60@COP/SWCNT, researchers found that the nanohybrid materials have great potential in photovoltaic applications. The results not only document the optoelectronic processes in the complex, but sketch a potent alternative for fabricating efficient photoactive molecular devices with this novel class of nanohybrid materials.Benefits
This novel class of nano-hybrids have the potential to overcome the challenges in construction of light harvesting systems. Additionally, they show great promise in photovoltaic applications and could lead to a powerful alternative for fabricating efficient photoactive molecular devices.
Applications and Industries
Photovoltaics, photodetectors and photoswitches.More Information
“Nanohybrid Compositions Comprising Carbon Nanotubes and Covalent Organic Polyhedron-Fullerene Complexes.” Provisional patent application filed March 2013; available under CDA.
“Nanohybrid Solar Cells Consisting of Self-Assembled Semiconducting Single-Wall Carbon Nanotube and Covalent Organic Polyhedron(COP)- C60 Core-Shell Complexes.” Manuscript in preparation; available under CDA.
Semiconducting Carbon Nanotube and Covalent Organic Polyhedron–C60 Nanohybrids for Light Harvesting. Chem. Commun., 2012, 48, 8377–8379. PDF available upon request.
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