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Research Overview

The research interests of Dong's group includes developing and synthesis of novel nanomaterials and elucidating their photophysical and electronic properties for photonics, energy, and photocatalysis applications. 


Nanocrystal synthesis with precise control

​A reliable synthesis method with precise control over the size, shape, surface, and composition of nanocrystals promises the discovery of their unique optical property. Our group unites reaction kinetics and thermodynamics to control the nanocrystal synthesis precisely. The nanocrystals generated are highly uniform and can be applied and studied for various applications.  


Single particle studies and quantum photonics

​Quantum Photonics such as Single Photon Emitters (SPEs) are key sources in quantum information sciences (QIS) that will benefit the building of quantum computing network in the future. Colloidal quantum dots (QD) possessing superb optical properties such as high light emission efficiency are highly suitable for quantum light sources. Recently, lead halide perovskite colloidal QDs have emerged as a promising photon source due to their defect tolerance, fast emission, and Auger recombination rates. Our lab applies cutting-edge microscopes to study optical properties on a single particle level. We are trying to develop the next generation of quantum photonics utilizing carefully designed nanocrystals combined with creative surface ligand engineering. 


Nanocrystal growth kinetics and thermodynamics

In semiconductor nanocrystal syntheses, although ensemble properties such as photoluminescence and absorption spectra can be monitored by taking aliquots from the reaction, the fast nucleation process and microscopic picture of growing kinetics are not readily accessible to normal experimental measurements. Our group studies nanoparticle growth kinetic at a Miniaturized liquid/liquid (L/L) interface. The nanometer-sized L/L interface will enable the analysis of the nanocrystal growth kinetics at a single particle level with high sensitivity.

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