3 March 2009 Toward non-blinking quantum dots: the effect of thick shell
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Fluorescence spectroscopy studies have shown that, at a single molecule level, fluorophore emission intensity fluctuates between bright and dark states. These fluctuations, known as blinking, limit the use of fluorophores in single molecule experiments. Statistical analysis of these intensity fluctuations has demonstrated that the dark states duration exhibits a universal heavy-tailed power law distribution in organic as well as inorganic fluorophores. However, the precise reasons underlying the blinking of single fluorophores are still matter of debate and whether it can be suppressed is not clear. Here we have synthesized CdSe/CdS core/shell quantum dots (QDs) with thick crystalline shells, which do not blink at low frame rate and established a direct correlation between shell thickness and blinking occurrences. Single fluorophore blinking and blinking statistics are thus not as universal as thought so far. We anticipate our results to help better understand the physicochemistry of single fluorophore emission and rationalize the design of other fluorophores that do not blink. The materials presented here should readily find interesting applications in biology for single molecule tracking and in photonics as robust and continuous photon emitter.
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Benoit Mahler, Benoit Mahler, Piernicola Spinicelli, Piernicola Spinicelli, Stéphanie Buil, Stéphanie Buil, Xavier Quelin, Xavier Quelin, Jean-Pierre Hermier, Jean-Pierre Hermier, Benoit Dubertret, Benoit Dubertret, } "Toward non-blinking quantum dots: the effect of thick shell", Proc. SPIE 7189, Colloidal Quantum Dots for Biomedical Applications IV, 718903 (3 March 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.808152; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.808152

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