Spectroscopic Comparison of Thermal Transport at Organic-Inorganic and Organic-Hybrid Interfaces Using CsPbBr3 and FAPbBr3 (FA = Formamidinium) Perovskite Nanocrystals

Benjamin T. Diroll, Arun Mannodi-Kanakkithodi, Maria K.Y. Chan, Richard D. Schaller*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Thermal transport across interfaces depends on the matching of vibrational structure at the interface. This work examines the transfer of thermal excitation from an organic ligand coating to either all-inorganic cesium lead tribromide (CsPbBr3) nanocrystals or hybrid organic-inorganic formamidinium lead tribromide (FAPbBr3) nanocrystals using selective infrared optical excitation. These two semiconductors are directly compared because they (or similar semiconductors) are currently envisioned as strong candidates in many optoelectronic technologies and they differ due to the presence of an organic or inorganic cation, which introduces substantial differences in the phonon density of states in otherwise quite similar semiconductors. Infrared excitation of C-H vibrations of surface-bound ligands generates a temperature gradient between the organic ligand shell and nanocrystal core, which results in heat flow, measured by probing changes of the semiconductor band gap. Heat transfer to both perovskite compositions of comparable sizes is similar (25-30 ps), due to fast intramolecular vibrational relaxation and similar matching of low-energy phonons with the organic ligand, but FAPbBr3 samples show a slow bleaching kinetic on the order of 1 ns. This slow, heat-induced change in the semiconductor band gap is attributed not to interfacial heat transfer but instead to thermal equilibration between the organic and inorganic sublattices of FAPbBr3. Ab initio molecular dynamics simulations support the hypothesis that low-energy inorganic sublattice phonon modes are populated initially in the heat transfer process, with a slow thermal population of the higher-energy phonon modes associated primarily with the organic cation. Slow thermal equilibration of FAPbBr3 is likely to substantially impact the time-dependent response of optoelectronic devices that heat the semiconductor active layer and provide further evidence that the poor bulk thermal transport of hybrid perovskite materials extends to microscopic thermal processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8155-8160
Number of pages6
JournalNano letters
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 13 2019


  • Heat transfer
  • infrared
  • nanocrystal
  • perovskites
  • phonon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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