The synthesis of silicon and silicon-based quantum dots (diameter < 5 nm) is discussed. Specifically the synthesis of Si-based quantum dots (QDs) by atmospheric pressure plasmas is reviewed and the most recent developments are also reported. Atmospheric pressure plasmas are then compared with other synthesis methods that include low pressure plasmas, wet chemistry, electrochemical etching and laser-based methods. Finally, progress in the synthesis of alloyed silicon QDs is discussed where the nanoscale Si-Sn and Si-C systems are reported. The report also includes a theoretical analysis that highlights some fundamental differences offered by plasmas at atmospheric pressure and that may provide opportunities for novel materials with advantageous properties.
- atmospheric pressure plasmas
- quantum dots