Synthesis, applications and potential photoluminescence mechanism of spectrally tunable carbon dots

Bo Zhi, Xiao Xiao Yao, Yi Cui, Galya Orr, Christy L. Haynes

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Due to the prominent characteristics of carbon-based luminescent nanostructures (known colloquially as carbon dots), such as inexpensive precursors, excellent hydrophilicity, low toxicity, and intrinsic fluorescence, these nanomaterials are regarded as potential candidates to replace traditional quantum dots in some applications. As such, research in the field of carbon dots has been increasing in recent years. In this mini-review, we summarize recent progress in studies of multicolor carbon dots focusing on potential photoluminescence (PL) mechanisms, strategies for effective syntheses, and applications in ion/molecule and temperature sensing, light emitting diodes and high-resolution bioimaging techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20411-20428
Number of pages18
Issue number43
StatePublished - Nov 21 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Science Foundation under the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology, CHE-1503408. The CSN is part of the Centers for Chemical Innovation Program. Part of this work was done at the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory, a national scientific user facility sponsored by DOE's Office of Biological and Environmental Research and located at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Royal Society of Chemistry.


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