Quantum Dots for Bio-energetics and Enhanced Light Harvesting: Exploration of Energy Transfer from Semiconductor Nanocrystals to Photosynthetic Biological Complexes

Par Yuri Rakovich, Material Physics Center and Donostia International Physics Center, Donostia San Sebastian, Spain, IKERBASQUE, Basque Foundation for Science

Mardi 16 Février, 14h, Salle des séminaires, 3ème étage, Batiment A4

Abstract :Review will be presented of our recent results on development of hybrid material build from semiconductor nanocrystals and photoactive bio-complexes: – membrane protein bacteriorhodopsin and photosynthetic reaction centers purified from bacteria Rhodobacter spheroides. We have demonstrated that nanocrystals specifically immobilized on the surface of the photo-active bio-systems are able to play the role of a built-in light energy convertor by harvesting light which would not be absorbed efficiently by the bio-system alone. Semiconductor nanocrystals were further demonstrated to be able to transfer the harvested energy via highly efficient FRET to this complex biological system. In nonlinear optical regime the integration of nanocrystals with backteriorhodopsin results in strong wavelength-dependent enhancement of nonlinear refraction index. We have also demonstrated a first proof-of-the-principle evidence that the bacteriorhodopsin is able to utilize the transferred by nanocrystals additional energy to improve the efficiency of its biological function. This new hybrid materials with exceptional linear and nonlinear optical properties might have numerous photonic and optoelectronic applications employing photochromic, energy harvesting, transfer and conversion properties.

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