Valence band and core level X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy of lead sulfide nanoparticle polymer composites
Valence band and core level X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) were used to probe lead sulfide (PbS) nanoparticle -polymer nanocomposites. Composite materials were prepared by trapping commercially available monodisperse 3 and 10 nm PbS nanoparticles in two polymers, the non-conducting polymer, polystyrene, and the conjugated polymer, poly(2-methoxy-5-(2'-ethyl-hexyloxy)- p-phenylene vinylene (referred to below as MEH-PPV). The nanocomposites prepared from commercial nanoparticles underwent oxidation, mainly to form lead sulfate. However, the narrow size distributions of the commercial nanoparticles allowed observation of distinct changes in the valence band from the 3 to 10 nm nanoparticles. Nanocomposites of 2-5 and 4-7 nm PbS nanoparticles were synthesized by growing the particles in poly(vinyl alcohol) (referred to below as PVA) and MEH-PPV, respectively. These composites both indicated the formation of lead sulfide nanoparticles. Furthermore, the XP spectra for the PVA/PbS composite displayed bonding between the PbS nanoparticles and the polymer while MEH-PPV showed no PbS -polymer bonding. The nanoparticles synthesized in MEH-PPV did not undergo oxidation. The particle size distributions of the synthesized nanoparticles were too broad to display size-dependent changes in the valence band.