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Phys Rev Lett. 2007 Nov 30;99(22):226106. Epub 2007 Nov 30.

Entropy-mediated patterning of surfactant-coated nanoparticles and surfaces.

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  • 1Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109, USA.


We perform atomistic and mesoscale simulations to explain the origin of experimentally observed stripelike patterns formed by immiscible ligands coadsorbed on the surfaces of gold and silver nanoparticles. We show that when the conformational entropy gained via this morphology is sufficient, microphase-separated stripelike patterns form. When the entropic gain is not sufficient, we instead predict bulk phase-separated Janus particles. We also show corroborating experimental results that confirm our simulational predictions that stripes form on flat surfaces as well as on curved nanoparticle surfaces.

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