Photoluminescence mechanism of carbon dots: triggering high-color-purity red fluorescence emission through edge amino protonation

Particle morphology and structure

As shown in Fig. 1a, transmission electron microscope (TEM) images at 50 nm resolution demonstrate that the prepared CDs are well dispersed in aqueous solution. The inset image of Fig. 1a shows that the particle size of CDs is distributed in the range from 1 to 3 nm with the average dimension of 2 nm. High-resolution images presented in Fig. 1b indicate that CDs have a lattice distance of 0.21 nm attributed to the (1,0,0) plane of graphite. Raman spectrum of the CDs is recorded and shown in Supplementary Fig. 1. Vibration peaks presented at 1374 and 1607 cm−1 corresponding to the structure of sp3 (D) and sp2 (G), and the ID/IG ratio of CDs is 0.80. The dominant strength of G peak indicates the graphitic structure nature of CDs in the…

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