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Template-Assisted Self Assembly of Fluorescent Nanodiamonds for Scalable Quantum Technologies

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posted on 2023-01-12, 14:33 authored by Henry J. Shulevitz, Tzu-Yung Huang, Jun Xu, Steven Neuhaus, Raj N. Patel, Lee C. Bassett, Cherie R. Kagan
Milled nanodiamonds containing nitrogen-vacancy (NV) centers provide an excellent platform for sensing applications as they are optically robust, have nanoscale quantum sensitivity, and form colloidal dispersions which enable bottom-up assembly techniques for device integration. However, variations in their size, shape, and surface chemistry limit the ability to position individual nanodiamonds and statistically study properties that affect their optical and quantum characteristics. Here, we present a scalable strategy to form ordered arrays of nanodiamonds using capillary-driven, template-assisted self assembly. This method enables the precise spatial arrangement of isolated nanodiamonds with diameters below 50 nm across millimeter-scale areas. Measurements of over 200 assembled nanodiamonds yield a statistical understanding of their structural, optical, and quantum properties. The NV centers' spin and charge properties are uncorrelated with nanodiamond size, but rather are consistent with heterogeneity in their nanoscale environment. This flexible assembly method, together with improved understanding of the material, will enable the integration of nanodiamonds into future quantum photonic and electronic devices.

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