Issue 41, 2017

Self-assembled clusters of patchy rod-like molecules


The design of complex self-assembled structures remains a challenging task due to the intricate relationship between the properties of the building blocks and the final morphology of the aggregates. Here, we report such a relationship for rod-like particles with one or two attractive patches based on a combination of computer simulations and analytical theory. We investigated the formation of finite aggregates under various conditions and constructed structure diagrams, which can be used to determine and extrapolate the system composition. The size of the clusters is mainly determined by the size of the attractive patches and their geometrical arrangement. We showed that it is challenging to obtain clusters with more than four particles in high yields, and more complex building blocks or additional molecules would need to be used. Moreover, the particles with patch sizes close to the structure boundaries can switch between the aggregate state by a small change in conditions. These findings can be useful for the development of self-assembling building blocks and for the understanding of protein folds of coiled coils under various conditions.

Graphical abstract: Self-assembled clusters of patchy rod-like molecules

Supplementary files

Article information

Article type
12 Jul 2017
04 Sep 2017
First published
05 Sep 2017
This article is Open Access
Creative Commons BY license

Soft Matter, 2017,13, 7492-7497

Self-assembled clusters of patchy rod-like molecules

M. Jurásek and R. Vácha, Soft Matter, 2017, 13, 7492 DOI: 10.1039/C7SM01384A

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