Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 54, Issue 11, pp 8492–8503 | Cite as

Low-voltage multicolor electroluminescence from all-inorganic carbon dots/Si-heterostructured light-emitting diodes

  • Xiaoming Mo
  • Qiuchun Lu
  • Tao Li
  • Xiaoma TaoEmail author
  • Chengjun Qi
  • Yulu Zhou
  • Qike Jiang
  • Yifang Ouyang
Electronic materials


Low-voltage and multicolor electroluminescent light-emitting diodes (LEDs) based upon carbon dots (CDs) are demonstrated by using simple all-inorganic CDs/Si heterostructures. Electroluminescence (EL) originations of the CDs/Si LEDs are investigated clearly without the interference of commonly used organic semiconductors. Three distinct peaks at 438, 540, and 600 nm are achieved in the EL spectra of the CDs/Si LEDs, and they are found to only originate from the CDs. Addition of a PMMA polymer does not influence the EL originations, but improves the flatness of the CD active layer, thereby enhancing the EL performance of the CDs/Si LEDs. Most strikingly, the emission threshold voltage of such all-inorganic CDs/Si LEDs is as low as 3.4 V, which is the lowest onset voltage among the CDs-based LEDs by using fluorescent CDs as the active emitter. The ultra-low driving voltage proves the feasibility of the all-inorganic CDs/Si LEDs in the future multicolor solid-state lighting applications.



This work was financially supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 11504060, 51701201), Natural Science Foundation of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region (Grant No. 2018GXNSFBA281163), Scientific Research Project for Higher Education of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region (Grant No. KY2015ZD006), Doctoral Scientific Research Foundation of Guangxi University (Grant No. XBZ160084), and Young Teachers’ Innovation Training Project of Guangxi Bossco Environmental Protection Technology Co., Ltd. (Grant No. BRP180220).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflicts of interest

The authors declare no competing conflicts of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center on Nanoenergy Research, School of Physical Science and TechnologyGuangxi UniversityNanningPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Guangxi Key Laboratory for Relativistic Astrophysics, School of Physical Science and TechnologyGuangxi UniversityNanningPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Dalian Institute of Chemical PhysicsChinese Academy of SciencesDalianPeople’s Republic of China

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