Using Polystyrene-block-poly(acrylic acid)-coated Metal Nanoparticles as Monomers for Their Homo- and Co-polymerization
Date of Issue2015
School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences
We present a template-free method for “polymerizing” nanoparticles into long chains without side branches. A variety of nanoparticles are encapsulated in polystyrene-block-poly(acrylic acid) (PSPAA) shells and then used as monomers for their self-assembly. Spherical PSPAA micelles upon acid treatment are known to assemble into cylindrical micelles. Exploiting this tendency, the core-shell nanoparticles are induced to aggregate, coalesce, and then transform into long chains. When more than one type of nanoparticles are used, random and block “copolymers” of nanoparticles can be obtained. Detailed procedures are reported for the PSPAA encapsulation of nanoparticles, homo- and co-polymerization of the core-shell nanoparticles, separation and purification of the resulting nanoparticle chains. Transformations of single-line chains into double- and triple-line chains are also presented. The synergy between the polymer shell and the embedded nanoparticles leads to an unusual chain-growth polymerization mode, giving long nanoparticle chains that are distinct from the products of the traditional step-growth aggregation process.
Chemistry; Issue 101; Nanoparticle; chain; self-assembly; encapsulation; polymer; homo-polymerization; co-polymerization; polystyrene-block-poly(acrylic acid)
Journal of Visualized Experiments
© 2015 Journal of Visualized Experiments. This paper was published in Journal of Visualized Experiments and is made available as an electronic reprint (preprint) with permission of Journal of Visualized Experiments. The published version is available at: [http://dx.doi.org/10.3791/52954]. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic or multiple reproduction, distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.