Bright, stable, and water-soluble CuInS2/ZnS nanocrystals passivated by cetyltrimethylammonium bromide

Jun Lee, Chang Soo Han

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


We report a highly bright and stable aqueous dispersion of CuInS2/ZnS (CIS/ZnS) nanocrystals (NCs) using surfactant-assisted microemulsion and cold treatment. CIS/ZnS NCs were facilely synthesized via a stepwise, consecutive hybrid flow reactor approach. To stabilize the optical properties of hydrophobic CIS/ZnS NCs, cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) was chosen as a matrix for aqueous phase transfer. As the result, a high quantum yield (QY) of 56.0% and excellent photostability were acquired in aqueous media. For removing excessive surfactants, cold treatment (4°C) of the CTAB-water solution was adopted to prevent further agglomeration of CIS/ZnS NCs, which could secure high stability over 6 months (less 2% reduction in QY). The optical features and structure of the obtained CTAB stabilized CIS/ZnS (CTAB-CIS/ZnS) NCs have been characterized by UV–vis and photoluminescence (PL) spectroscopies, XRD, XPS, EDX, and TEM. The high stability and PL of water soluble CTAB-CIS/ZnS NCs suggest their potential in nanoelectronics and bioapplications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number145
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalNanoscale Research Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Dec 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Industrial Strategic Technology Development Program (No. 10035274, ‘Quantum dot phosphorus converted LED module’) funded by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE), Korea.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015, Lee and Han; licensee Springer.


  • CTAB
  • Cold treatment
  • CuInS/ZnS nanocrystals
  • Photostability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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