Office for Technology Commercialization

Doped Silicon Nanoparticle Inks

Technology #20140146

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Semiconductor NanocrystalsDoped Silicon
Uwe Kortshagen, PhD
Professor, Mechanical Engineering, College of Science and Engineering
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Managed By
Larry Micek
Technology Licensing Officer 612-624-9568
Patent Protection

US Patent Pending 2015-0325328

Solution-Processed Semiconducting Silicon Nanoparticles

An innovative, no-solvent plasma-based process can produce semiconducting silicon nanoparticles in high yields. These modified semiconductor nanoparticles resist oxidation, maintain desirable electronic properties and can be dissolved in commonly used solvents. Free from organic ligands, the nanoparticles can be doped with boron and/or phosphorous and processed in a variety of ways, including spray coating, dip coating and printing. The doped nanoparticles can be solution processed to create nanoparticle inks that can be cast into films, deposited using printing and other techniques and are compatible with roll-to-roll manufacturing.

Thin Film for Optoelectronic, Photoelectronic and Solar Cell Applications

Semiconducting nanoparticles hold significant possibilities for optoelectronic, photoelectronic and solar cell applications. Processing nanoparticles into useful structures like thin films using methods such as spray coating, dip coating, and printing requires that the nanoparticles remain well dispersed in solvent at high concentrations without using organic ligands as dispersive agents. Current synthesis and processing methods struggle to obtain well dispersed nanoparticles that maintain their electronic properties. This new technology produces films with excellent electrical conductivity and no cracks.

BENEFITS AND FEATURES OF Solution-processed Doped Silicon Nanoparticle Inks:

  • Potential replacement for traditional semiconductor materials for optoelectronics, photovoltaics and quantum dots for displays and lighting applications
  • Films show excellent electrical conductivity with no cracks
  • Nanoparticles can be dissolved in commonly used solvents and remain well dispersed
  • Nanoparticles resist oxidation and maintain desirable electronic properties
  • Can be doped with boron and/or phosphorous

Phase of Development - Proof of Concept