Halogen bond-assisted self-assembly of gold nanoparticles in solution and on a planar surface†
Halogen bonding (XB) has been shown to be a powerful tool for promoting molecular self-assembly in different fields. The use of XB for noncovalent assembly of inorganic nanoparticles (NP) is, instead, quite limited, considering how extensively other interactions (i.e., electrostatic forces, hydrophobic effect, hydrogen bonding, etc.) have been exploited to modulate and program NP self-assembly. Here, we designed and synthesized XB-capable organic ligands that were efficiently used to functionalize the surface of gold NPs (AuNPs). XB-assisted AuNP self-assembly was attained in solution mixing AuNPs bearing XB-donor ligands with ditopic XB-acceptor molecules and AuNPs functionalized with XB-acceptor moieties. Likewise, a preliminary study of XB-driven adsorption of these AuNPs on surface was performed via Quartz Crystal Microbalance with Dissipation Monitoring (QCM-D), used as an in situ tool for measuring mass changes upon XB-driven self-assembly.
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