Designer optical nanocomposites for up- and down-conversion
Participants: Amanda Petford-Long, Prof Jackie Johnson (University of Tennessee Space Institute)
The aim of this proposal is to develop novel ‘designer’ glass ceramics based on a modified fluorozirconate (ZBLAN) glass composition, and to explore their luminescence behavior. The materials consist of layered nanocomposite materials in which we can tightly control the distribution of the optically-active dopant and the nanocrystalline phase responsible for the optical behavior, within the glass matrix. We are exploring how energy transfer between the luminescent dopant atoms and the nanocrystals is controlled by composition profile and nanostructure. The ultimate goal is to gain insights leading to optimization of these designer nanocomposites for applications as wavelength shifters pertaining to up- and down-converters in solar cells, and for applications in nuclear safety, border security and medical imaging.