Self-assembly of metal-polymer analogues of amphiphilic triblock copolymers
Organized arrays of anisotropic nanoparticles show electronic and optical properties that originate from the coupling of shape-dependent properties of the individual nanorods. The organization of nanorods in a controllable and predictable way provides a route to the fabrication of new materials and functional devices. So far, significant progress has been achieved in the self-assembly of nanorod arrays, yet the realization of a range of different structures requires changing the surface chemistry of the nanoparticles. We organized metal nanorods in structures with varying geometries by using a striking analogy between amphiphilic ABA triblock copolymers and the hydrophilic nanorods tethered with hydrophobic polymer chains at both ends. The self-assembly was tuneable and reversible and it was achieved solely by changing the solvent quality for the constituent blocks. This approach provides a new route to the organization of anisotropic nanoparticles by using the strategies that are established for the self-assembly of block copolymers.
Nie, Z; Fava, D; Kumacheva, E; Zou, S; Walker, GC; Rubinstein, M
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