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So-called quantum dots are a new class of materials with many applications. Quantum dots are realized by tiny semiconductor crystals with dimensions in the nanometre range. The optical and electrical properties can be controlled through the size of these crystals. As QLEDs, they are already on the market in the latest generations of TV flat screens, where they ensure particularly brilliant and high-resolution color reproduction. However, quantum dots are not only used as dyes, they are also used in solar cells or as semiconductor devices, right up to computational building blocks, the qubits, of a quantum computer.

Now, a team led by Dr. Annika Bande at HZB has extended the understanding of the interaction between several with an atomistic view in a theoretical publication.

Annika Bande heads the "Theory of Electron Dynamics and Spectroscopy" group at HZB and is particularly interested in the origins of quantum physical phenomena. Although quantum dots are extremely tiny nanocrystals, they consist of thousands of atoms with, in turn, multiples of electrons. Even with supercomputers, the electronic structure of such a semiconductor crystal could hardly be calculated, emphasizes the theoretical chemist, who recently completed her habilitation at Freie Universit├Ąt. "But we are developing methods that describe the problem approximately," Bande explains. "In this case, we worked with scaled-down quantum dot versions of only about a hundred atoms, which nonetheless feature the characteristic properties of real nanocrystals."

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