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Issue 14, 2012
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Hierarchical materials synthesis at soft all-aqueous interfaces

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Abstract

Fluid–fluid interfaces are known to function as templates for nanomaterial precipitation and subsequent assembly, both in biological and technological contexts. Here we present a method for hierarchical magnetic (iron oxide) materials synthesis at soft, all-aqueous liquid interfaces that act as templates for nanoparticle precipitation and macromolecule-assisted assembly. The method simply involves fusion of two reactant-loaded aqueous drops, with one drop containing a macromolecular polyelectrolyte. We elucidate the role played by macromolecule–metal complexes in presenting a soft interfacial ‘scaffold’ for controlled hierarchical materials synthesis. We also demonstrate the continuous fabrication of such hierarchically structured particles in microfluidic devices, and discuss the general applicability of this method.

Graphical abstract: Hierarchical materials synthesis at soft all-aqueous interfaces

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Article information


Submitted
14 Dec 2011
Accepted
24 Jan 2012
First published
28 Feb 2012

Soft Matter, 2012,8, 3924-3928
Article type
Paper

Hierarchical materials synthesis at soft all-aqueous interfaces

S. H. Sophia Lee, M. K. Dawood, W. K. Choi, T. Alan Hatton and S. A. Khan, Soft Matter, 2012, 8, 3924
DOI: 10.1039/C2SM07373K

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