The present proposal is based on two research fronts: i) the preparation and characterization of new materials based on copper (I) halide complexes for luminescent applications in lighting and gas sensing; ii) the design, synthesis and characterization of materials based on quantum dots and upconversion nanoparticles dispersed in solid host matrices. The Cu(I) complexes synthesized in our lab at IFSC/USP show a rich variety of photophysical properties and have been characterized in detail in the solution state. However, their potential application as optical materials requires their incorporation into solid host matrices and testing of vapochromic response and selective gas sensing, which will be carried out in the Ford laboratory. On the other hand, SnO2, CdTe and CdSe, quantum dots can also be suitably dispersed in solid host matrices to yield promising technological applications, such as white light generation. To accomplish this goal, different immobilization strategies based on sol-gel co-assembly, design of core-shell systems, and topotactical modification techniques will be pursued while working with Prof. Ford´s group. The photophysical properties of the resulting materials will be characterized by ground and excited-state absorption, steady state and time-resolved emission and excitation, with a particular emphasis on temperature dependent studies and gas sensing of O2, CO and NO, in the case of the complex-derived materials. The functional characteristics of all materials will be correlated, as much as possible, with detailed structural investigations using modern solid-state nuclear and electronic magnetic resonance techniques (NMR and EPR) as probes of intermolecular guest-host and guest-guest interactions. Based on these studies we hope to understand and exploit host-guest synergies for tailoring optimized optical properties towards desired applications.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: