Influence of Composition, Doping Concentration and Annealing Temperatures on Optical Properties of Eu3+-Doped ZnO–SiO2 Nanocomposites
We report the influence of Eu3+ doping concentration, ZnO content as well as annealing temperature on optical properties and micro structures of ZnO–SiO2 nanocomposites. Thin layers of ZnO–SiO2 nanocomposites with various compositions doped with different Eu3+ concentrations were prepared by sol–gel method and spin-coating process. The structure and morphology of the thin films as a function of annealing temperature were studied and analyzed by X-ray diffraction (XDR) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). Upon annealing temperatures above 1000 °C, we observed a coexistence of hexagonal structure of ZnO and willemite structure of Zn2SiO4. The Eu3+-related photoluminescence (PL) spectra vary with doping concentration, ZnO composition and the heat treatment process. The domination of emission peak at 613 nm assigned for 5D0-7F2 transition of Eu3+ ions indicates a majority of optically active Eu3+ ions locating at low symmetry sites in the ZnO–SiO2 hosting materials in the thin films. Energy transfer processes upon photon absorptions within ZnO nanocrystals and Eu3+ ions are investigated via photoluminescence excitation spectra in the range of excitation wavelengths from 250 to 450 nm. The decrease of Eu3+-related PL intensity happens in coincidence with the formation of the willemite structure of Zn2SiO4 at higher annealing temperatures.
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Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: International Training Institute for Material Science (ITIMS), Hanoi University of Science and Technology (HUST), Hanoi, 100000, Vietnam
Publication date: 01 August 2016
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