Ligand exchange optimization for quantum dot based infrared thin-film photodetectors

Leuven
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More than two weeks ago

From imaging to sensing. Develop the next technology in machine vision and computed imagery.

In recent years, there is a significant increase in the integration of infrared image sensors in many everyday use devices such as smartphones and laptops, driven by the need for biometric sensors such as face recognition and fingerprint scanners. At the same time, a variety of new applications such as self-driving cars, augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) can take advantage of developments in the infrared imaging technology. Specifically, a growing demand exists for sensing technologies in the short-wave-infrared (SWIR), which relates to wavelengths in the range of 1µm-2µm. Nowadays, the available technologies for IR sensors is rather limited. Silicon can only detect in the near-infrared range (NIR) with a strong cut-off after 900 nm and the III-V semiconductors that are used for SWIR spectrum are having constraints in terms of throughput, resolution and high cost.
Colloidal quantum dots (QDs) offer an alternative approach in detecting infrared light. Taking advantage of the quantum confinement, QDs can be tuned to detect different spectra from visible up to the NIR and SWIR. Furthermore, they can be deposited from solution over large area with low cost techniques such as spin coating.
The main challenge in this technology is surface chemistry of the QDs, governed by interactions between the QD and surface ligands. The student will focus on the investigation of different molecular structures for QD ligands, and their effect on the electrical, optical and morphological properties of QD films. These films will be used for the fabrication of thin-film photodiode detectors, for which a proper energy-band alignment design and optical design will be crucial for the achievement of high performance. The student will be involved in the full fabrication and characterization route, from the ligand exchange and film formation up to the photodiode performance. He / She will receive training on the relevant processing and characterization tools. After a short introduction to the facilities, an independent investigation is expected with the focus on short-term research goals.

Type of project: Combination of internship and thesis

Duration: 6 months

Required degree: Master of Science, Master of Engineering Science

Required background: Chemistry/Chemical Engineering, Materials Engineering, Nanoscience & Nanotechnology

Supervising scientist(s): For further information or for application, please contact: Itai Lieberman (Itai.Lieberman@imec.be) and Epimitheas Georgitzikis (Epimitheas.Georgitzikis@imec.be) and David Cheyns (David.Cheyns@imec.be)

Imec allowance will be provided.

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