[en] Colloidal solutions of CdTe nanoparticles have been prepared by the "electropulse" technique. The diameters of the CdTe nanoparticles range from 5 to 30 nm. The goal of this work is to study the formation and evolution of the induced thermo-refractive index with a long-term goal of forming a thermal lens. An induced thermo-refractive index occurs when the CdTe solutions are irradiated with a strong laser beam. The experimental approach is derived from the Z-scan technique, a technique which is very sensitive to refractive index modulation in a sample. Thermo-optical coefficients, such as the thermal diffusivity, D, the characteristic build-up time of the thermal lens, t(c), and the induced thermo-refractive index can be determined from dynamic Z-scan curves. The thermo-optical coefficients have been determined at different wavelengths, beam powers, and for different nanoparticles sizes. (C) 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.