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X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy: A Unique Tool To Determine the Internal Heterostructure of Nanoparticles, D. D. Sarma, Pralay K. Santra, Sumanta Mukherjee, and Angshuman Nag, Chem. Mater., 2013, 25 (8), pp 1222–1232

We review the existing literature on the application of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy in the study of nanocrystals. The unique ability of this technique to provide quantitative and reliable descriptions of highly complex internal structures of a variety of nanocrystals has been discussed in detail. We show that an accurate description of the nanocrystal internal structure is crucial and a prerequisite to understand many different properties, particularly optical properties, of such nanocrystal systems. We also discuss limitations and future outlook of this technique.