Comparative investigation of structural, EPR, optical and photoluminescence properties of nanostructured LaPO4:Ce/RE/Me and LaPO4:Yb/Er phosphors prepared by co-precipitation method
In this work, the structural, thermal, vibrational, morphological, magnetic and optical properties of LaPO4:Ce/RE/Me (RE=Nd3+, Tb3+; Me=Cr3+, Mn2+) and LaPO4:Yb3+/Er3+ phosphors prepared by the co-precipitation method are presented. The obtained materials crystallized in monoclinic structure with the P21/n space group and the particles were of nanorod shape with about 200 nm in length and the diameter approximately 19 nm. The presence of dopant ions was confirmed by both electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) and UV-visible spectroscopies. In addition, the down-conversion (DC) and up-conversion (UC) of the LaPO4 nanophosphors via the 275 and 980 nm excitations, respectively, were considered, and a wide range of electronic transitions was observed. Based on the photoluminescence (PL) spectra, there is an efficient energy transfer (ET) process from Ce3+ donors to Nd3+ and Tb3+ acceptors, and the computed ET efficiency was 70% and 88%, respectively. The Ce3+/Cr3+ and Ce3+/Mn2+ doped LaPO4 showed weak far-red and green luminescence with much smaller ET efficiency of about 3.7 and 0.4%, respectively. LaPO4:Yb3+/Er3+ showed UC luminescence under the 980 nm laser radiation, and the resulted red and green light was attributed to the Er3+ transitions.