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by siebo last modified September 02, 2006 - 02:42

Quantum Dots


Quantum dots confine electrons, holes, or electron-hole pairs or so-called excitons to zero dimensions to a region on the order of the electrons' Compton wavelength. This can be contrasted to quantum wires, which are confined to a line and quantum wells, which are confined to a planar region. This confinement leads to discrete quantized energy levels and to the quantization of charge in units of the elementary electric charge e. Quantum dots are particularly significant for optical applications due to their theoretically high quantum yield. Quantum dots have also been suggested as implementations of a qubit for quantum information processing.

A quantum dot, also called a semiconductor nanocrystal or artificial atom is a semiconductor crystal whose size is on the order of just a few nanometers.