Quantum dots based systems for visible light redox photocatalysis of reactions useful in organic synthesis

Published : 15 July 2019

In the last decade, the emergence of photoredox catalysis has revolutionized the field of synthetic organic chemistry. Catalyst design has been boosted by development of catalysts for solar energy conversion. Ruthenium and iridium coordination complexes are playing a major role in this development. Besides these homogeneous catalysts, the used of heterogenous semiconductor photoredox catalysts for synthesis is still in his infancy. We propose here a research program dedicated to the investigation of semiconductor colloidal quantum dots (QDs) as photoredox catalysts for synthetic organic chemistry. These nanocrystalline catalysts are highly attractive since they combine some of the advantages of the homogeneous catalysts, such as large extinction coefficient in the visible spectrum, and retain the ability to be removed by filtration or centrifugation. Moreover, QDs have been found to very resistant to photobleaching and their redox properties may be fine-tuned by changing their composition (CdS, CdSe, ZnO, ZnSe… ), controlling their size and modifying the ligands used to stabilize them.

This PhD thesis will be a part of a collaborative project aiming at: 1) the use of QD-photocatalysts to generate alkoxyl radicals; 2) the development of a new class of photocatalysts combining QDs and Ag nanoparticles (QD-Ag-NP).

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