Recent progress in the fabrication of colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals has led to a wide range of quantum dots with a high oscillator strength, photoluminescence efficiency and size-tunable emission spectrum. The present proposal ‘Heterogeneous quantum rod and quantum dot nanomaterials’ aims at a comprehensive research and training program on the opto-electronic properties of heterostructured nanomaterials based on quantum rod and dot building blocks. More specifically, we will study quantum dot molecules, binary quantum dot solids, superstructures of aligned quantum rods and hybrid organic/inorganic systems with specific band alignment (type II heterostructures). The optical properties of these systems, e.g. polarizability, exciton lifetime and emission spectrum are determined by the delocalized, indirect nature of the exciton; while optical anisotropy can be achieved by alignment of quantum rods. Such systems can exhibit a large Stokes shift, enhanced nonlinear refraction, and an absorbance and emission spectrum that can be tailored by the architecture of the superstructure and external fields. This forms a direct route to applications of these materials in optimizing light sources and realizing fast and compact optical modulators and switches. The proposed training and research program is based on three research lines, synthesis and processing, characterization and modeling, and manipulation and application. With this program, we form researchers that can cope with the complex, multidisciplinary problems that the European opto-electronic industry will face in the implementation of nanotechnology and nanophotonics.
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