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Issue 2, 2008
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New insights into the nucleation and growth of PS nodules on silica nanoparticles by 3D cryo-electron tomography

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Abstract

The nucleation and growth of polystyrene (PS) nodules on 170 nm silica seeds under emulsion-polymerization conditions have been investigated for the first time by cryo-electron tomography. 3D arrangements were reconstructed from samples collected at several polymerization times (from 5 to 120 min). Early samples display the presence of small PS nodules bound to silica particles in a random distribution. For longer polymerization times, the number of PS nodules per silica seed decreases leading to octopod-like morphologies. The tomographic method allowed us to measure the contact angle that the growing PS nodules form with the silica bead surface. The average value of 142.4° remains constant over all of the observed period of the polymerization reaction. This contact angle appeared to be one of the key parameters for controlling the morphology of PS–silica biphasic particles.

Graphical abstract: New insights into the nucleation and growth of PS nodules on silica nanoparticles by 3D cryo-electron tomography

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Publication details

The article was received on 04 Jul 2007, accepted on 01 Nov 2007 and first published on 19 Nov 2007


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B710137F
Citation: Soft Matter, 2008,4, 311-315
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    New insights into the nucleation and growth of PS nodules on silica nanoparticles by 3D cryo-electron tomography

    J. Taveau, D. Nguyen, A. Perro, S. Ravaine, E. Duguet and O. Lambert, Soft Matter, 2008, 4, 311
    DOI: 10.1039/B710137F

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