Quantum confinement like behaviour in CdO and CdS nanoparticles is demonstrated through explicit evGW-BSE many-body perturbation theory calculations on 0.6-1.4 nanometre particles of these materials. However, while the lowest optical excited-state, exciton, and the highest occupied and lowest unoccupied quasiparticle states in such nanoparticles are predicted to be delocalised, they are found to be delocalised over the surface of the particle only and not the whole particle volume. The electronic and optical properties of CdO and CdS rocksalt nanoparticles are predicted to differ dramatically from their structurally analogous MgO counterparts, where the lowest exciton and highest occupied and lowest unoccupied quasiparticle states are strongly localised, in contrast. This difference in behaviour between MgO and CdO/CdS is explained in terms of the more polarisable, less ionic, bonding in CdO and CdS. The effect on the optical and fundamental gaps of the particles due to the presence of amine capping agents on the particles’ surface is explored and predicted to be relatively small. However, the highest occupied and lowest unoccupied quasiparticle states are found to consistently shift to more shallow values when increasing the surface density of capping agents. An explanation of this shift, finally, is proposed in terms of the dipole field induced by the aligned dipoles of the capping agents.
Supporting figures and tables
DFT optimised structures
XYZ coordinates of DFT optimised structures