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Sonication-enabled Rapid Production of Stable Liquid Metal Nanoparticles Grafted with Poly(1-octadecene-alt-maleic anhydride) in Aqueous Solutions

Abstract

Gallium-based liquid metals are attractive due to their unique combination of metallic and fluidic properties. Liquid metal nanoparticles (LM NPs), produced readily using sonication, find use in soft electronics, drug delivery, and other applications. However, LM NPs in aqueous solutions tend to oxidize and precipitate over time, which hinders their utility in systems that require long-term stability. Here we introduce a facile way to rapidly produce aqueous suspension of stable LM NPs within five minutes. We accomplish this by dissolving poly(1-octadecene-alt-maleic anhydride) (POMA) in toluene and mix within deionized water in the presence of liquid metal (LM). Sonicating the mixture forms an emulsion that embeds the liquid metal nanoparticles. Due to the POMA hydrophobic coating, the LM NPs remain stable in biological buffer for at least 60 days without noticeable oxidation, as confirmed by dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscopy. The stabilization is further achieved by tuning the LM composition. This paper elucidates the stabilization mechanisms. The stable LM NPs possesses the potential for further development in biomedical applications.

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Publication details

The article was received on 11 Jul 2018, accepted on 29 Sep 2018 and first published on 01 Oct 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8NR05600E
Citation: Nanoscale, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Sonication-enabled Rapid Production of Stable Liquid Metal Nanoparticles Grafted with Poly(1-octadecene-alt-maleic anhydride) in Aqueous Solutions

    Y. Lin, J. Genzer, W. Li, R. Qiao, M. D. Dickey and S. Tang, Nanoscale, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8NR05600E

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