Using both together would be a fluorescent nanoparticle whose size is matched to the wavelength of its emission, thus combining quantum confinement with particle fluorescence. Not sure whether such a hybrid is feasible, but I am sure that it is a lot easier to imagine than to do.
I did not read the original article, but "brightness" seems to be a poor choice of metric. When comparing two emitters, Quantum Efficiency is usually the proper measure. You can have a emitter with a low quantum efficiency but still make it brighter by cranking up the injection current. I guess what the author was trying to say is that since the nanoparticles were not quantized, the Density of State at the emission energy was higher therefore each particle was capable of emitting more photons.
Quantum dots used to be the world's brightest nanoparticles, but now Clarkson University has one-upped quantum confinement in favor of encapsulating fluorescent organic nanoparticles inside silicon dioxide. I am sure that quantum-dot researchers will volley back to try and regain the lead. Nevertheless, @NextGenLog I predict that ultra-sensitive detectors using functionalized silica nanoparticles will appear in three years.
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