Spectral and dynamical properties of multiexcitons in semiconductor nanocrystals

Annu Rev Phys Chem. 2007;58:635-73. doi: 10.1146/annurev.physchem.58.032806.104537.


Because of the strong spatial confinement of electronic wave functions and reduced dielectric screening, the effects of carrier-carrier Coulomb interactions are greatly enhanced in semiconductor nanocrystals (NCs) compared with those in bulk materials. These interactions open a highly efficient decay channel via Auger recombination, which represents a dominant recombination pathway for multiexcitons in NCs. Furthermore, strong Coulomb coupling between charge carriers leads to extremely efficient direct photogeneration of multiexcitons by single photons via carrier (or exciton) multiplication. This review focuses on spectral and dynamical properties of multiexcitons in semiconductor NCs. The specific topics discussed here include the structure of NC electronic states, spectral signatures of multiexcitons in transient absorption and photoluminescence, exciton-exciton interaction energies, Auger recombination, and carrier multiplication. This chapter also briefly reviews the implications of multiexciton effects for practical technologies, such as NC lasing and photovoltaics.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Luminescence
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Photochemistry
  • Photons
  • Semiconductors