Rare-earth-doped upconversion materials, featuring exceptional photophysical properties including long lifetime, sharp emission lines, large anti-Stokes shift, low autofluorescence of the background, and low toxicity, are promising for many applications. These materials have been investigated extensively since the 1960s and employed in many optical devices. However, due to rapid development of synthesis strategies for nanomaterials, upconversion materials have been rehighlighted on the basis of nanotechnology. Herein, we discuss the recent advances in upconversion materials. We start by considering energy transfer processes involved in the basic study of upconversion emission phenomena, as well as synthesis strategies of these materials. Progress in different energy transfer processes, which play an important role in determining luminescence efficiency, is then discussed. Newer applications of these materials have been vastly reviewed.
Part of the book: Luminescence