Solid-state infrared-to-visible upconversion sensitized by colloidal nanocrystals

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Nat. Photonics, Nature Publishing Group, Volume 10, Issue 1, p.31-34 (2016)






Optical upconversion via sensitized triplet-triplet exciton annihilation converts incoherent low-energy photons to shorter wavelengths under modest excitation intensities1,2,3. Here, we report a solid-state thin film for infrared-to-visible upconversion that employs lead sulphide colloidal nanocrystals as a sensitizer. Upconversion is achieved from pump wavelengths beyond lambda = 1 µm to emission at lambda = 612 nm. When excited at lambda = 808 nm, two excitons in the sensitizer are converted to one higher-energy state in the emitter at a yield of 1.2±0.2%. Peak efficiency is attained at an absorbed intensity equivalent to less than one sun. We demonstrate that colloidal nanocrystals are an attractive alternative to existing molecular sensitizers, given their small exchange splitting, wide wavelength tunability, broadband infrared absorption, and our transient observations of efficient energy transfer. This solid-state architecture for upconversion may prove useful for enhancing the capabilities of solar cells and photodetectors.