Light-controlled self-assembly of reversible and irreversible nanoparticle suprastructures.

Research paper by Rafal R Klajn, Kyle J M KJ Bishop, Bartosz A BA Grzybowski

Indexed on: 15 Jun '07Published on: 15 Jun '07Published in: PNAS


Nanoparticles (NPs) decorated with ligands combining photoswitchable dipoles and covalent cross-linkers can be assembled by light into organized, three-dimensional suprastructures of various types and sizes. NPs covered with only few photoactive ligands form metastable crystals that can be assembled and disassembled "on demand" by using light of different wavelengths. For higher surface concentrations, self-assembly is irreversible, and the NPs organize into permanently cross-linked structures including robust supracrystals and plastic spherical aggregates.