Bromide Causes Facet-Selective Atomic Addition in Gold Nanorod Syntheses
The aspect ratio-dependent properties of gold nanorods are used in a variety of applications, but the cause of anisotropic nanorod growth remains unclear. Measurements utilizing single-crystal electrodes were collected to determine what additive(s) in pentatwinned gold nanorod syntheses are responsible for facet-selective atomic addition. With cetyltrimethylammonium in the absence of bromide, the rate of atomic addition to Au(100) and Au(111) single crystals was the same, and isotropic nanoparticles were produced. The addition of increasing concentrations of bromide suppressed the rate of atomic addition to Au(100) relative to Au(111) and increased the aspect ratio of gold nanorods. Bromide was a more effective passivator of Au(100) in the absence of cetyltrimethylammonium, indicating cetyltrimethylammonium does not cause facet-selective atomic addition. Cetyltrimethylammonium surfactant is still necessary for gold nanorod growth because it reduces the rate of gold ion reduction and stabilizes suspended nanoparticles against aggregation.
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