Main group semiconducting materials : boron arsenide and an ester-functionalized salophen aluminum polymer
Swingle, Sarah Faye
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Boron arsenide is a compound main group semiconductor with a theoretical band gap in the range of 1.1 to 1.6 eV. Despite this ideal band gap, experimental studies of boron arsenide are very limited. In the present work, single source precursors with covalent bonds between boron and arsenic and labile ligands have been designed and synthesized. These precursors underwent thermal or chemical treatment to produce boron arsenide materials. Boron arsenide has also been prepared as a thin layer deposited on a boron substrate and a p-type photoelectrode was prepared from this material. The structure of the product was identified on the basis of X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy, and the surface composition was determined by means of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The electrode was found to be photoactive under both visible and UV-visible light irradiation and displayed a photocurrent of approximately 0.1 mA/cm² under UV-visible light irradiation at an applied potential of -0.25 V vs. Ag/AgCl. The valence band was estimated to be -5.1 eV. The indirect band gap, as determined from incident photo-to-electron conversion efficiency plots, is 1.46 eV. An ester-fuctionalized salophen aluminum complex that features a polymerizable bithiophene as the ester R group has been designed and synthesized. Metallopolymers of this type offer the additional advantages of processability and uniformity of the resulting films. The new salophen complex exhibited emission in the blue region at 491 nm with a quantum yield of 8.19%, which is significantly larger than that of the isolated ligand. Electropolymerization of this complex on a platinum button electrode resulted in the formation of an electrically conductive polymer that is also ionically conductive at low scan rates. In the polymeric form, the emission wavelength was found to be red-shifted to 505 nm.