Los Alamos National Laboratory

Los Alamos National Laboratory

Delivering science and technology to protect our nation and promote world stability

Nanotechnology and Advanced Spectroscopy

The research of this team centers on the synthesis and characterization of semiconductor and metal nanoparticles, composites and assemblies, and their application in optoelectronic devices

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  • Group Leader
  • Kirk Rector
  • Deputy Group Leader
  • Jeff Pietryga
  • Team Leader
  • Victor Klimov
  • Group Office
  • (505) 667-7121

This world-recognized effort is fully integrated, combining extensive wet-chemical synthesis and assembly capabilities with nearly unmatched advanced spectroscopic resources

The research of this team centers on the synthesis and characterization of semiconductor and metal nanoparticles, composites and assemblies, and their application in optoelectronic devices. This world-recognized effort is fully integrated, combining extensive wet-chemical synthesis and device fabrication capabilities with nearly unmatched advanced spectroscopic resources. The LANL component of the new Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics is housed within this team.

Solar Windows Technology Wins R&D 100 Award Recognition
The Quantum-Dot Solar Windows technology was pioneered by the C-PCS scientists who lead the Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics, in conjunction with collaborators from the University of Milano-Bicocca.

These revolutionary semitransparent windows contain highly emissive semiconductor nanocrystals (quantum dots) that collect sunlight for photovoltaics while providing a desired degree of shading. The material can turn windows and building facades into electrical generators of nonpolluting power. The nontoxic dots absorb the sunlight, re-emit it at a longer wavelength and waveguide it towards edge-installed photovoltaic cells to produce electricity.

This technology can transform once-passive building facades into power-generation units, which can be particularly useful in densely populated areas.

Los Alamos Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics researchers hold a large prototype solar window. From left to right: Jaehoon Lim, Kaifeng Wu, Victor Klimov, Hongbo Li.

“Turning Windows and Building Facades into Energy-Producing Solar Panels: Engineered Quantum Dots for Luminescent Solar Concentrators” wins the Green Technology Special Recognition Award.

CASP is a DOE Energy Frontier Research Center

The Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics (CASP) teamExamples of phenomena that are studied in the center include field enhancement in metal nanostructures for improved ligh-harvesting and high-efficiency coupling schemes, quantum confinement in semiconductor nanostructures for tailoring absorption spectra and directional transport in energy-gradient assemblies, and strong electron-electron interactions in quantum confined materials for increased photo-generation rates via carrier multiplication.

One recent advance is with low-cost, nontoxic copper-based quantum dots that achieve unprecedented longevity and efficiency.

Capture sunlight with your window
A luminescent solar concentrator turns any Capture sunlight with your window.window into a daytime power source. Researchers within the Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics, a DOE Energy Frontier Research Center, are using semiconductor nanocrystals as a replacement for the organic emitters in previous technologies. The latest development is the use of CuInSe2-xSx nanocrystals, which do not contain any toxic metals, and provide uniform coverage of the solar spectrum, adding a pleasing neutral tint to a window.

In addition, these nanocrystals feature really low self-reabsorption, allowing light harvesting over the length scales of real windows, which was unattainable with organic dyes. A key step was a process developed by partners at the University of Milano-Bicocca for encapsulating the nanocrystals into a strong, transparent polymer matrix while preserving their light emission properties. The results of this effort were reported in the October, 2015 issue of Nature Nanotechnology.

Victor Klimov, leader of the Quantum Dot team, received the Alexander von Humboldt award.Victor Klimov - Quantum Dot

Klimov is an expert in nanocrystal quantum dots and optical amplification in nanocrystals. He conducted research at Dresden University of Technology and the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich during 2013 and the summer of 2014.


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