We are exploring the green synthesis of oleic acid capped cadmium selenide (CdSe) nanoparticles that can be functionalized for use in thin film solar nanomaterials. The functionalization was achieved via a biphasic reaction where the oleic acid was exchanged for the water-soluble ligand, 3-mercapto-1-propanesulfonate. This ligand contains a terminal thiols that bind the nanotether to the nanoparticle, and water soluble sulfonic acid that control polydispersity. Nanotethered, water soluble CdSe nanoparticles were embedded in bicontinous polymeric networks of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT:PSS) and polyaniline (PANI) using water based self-assembly to fabricate solar bulk heterojuction films. Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy was used to verify ligand attachment and to characterize the dynamics of ligand-nanoparticle coordination. Successful syntheses were confirmed using UV-vis and fluorescence spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, and atomic force microscopy. Insight gained from these morphology studies informs ongoing work to develop solar inks for ink jet printing of solar nanocomposites with improved photocurrents.