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J Phys Chem B. 2006 Apr 6;110(13):6432-6.

Block-copolymer-controlled growth of CaCO3 microrings.


A novel way for directed solution growth of hollow superstructures of CaCO3 has been successfully developed on the basis of controlled self-assembly and polymer concentration gradients using a double-hydrophilic block copolymer with a hydrophobic modification as a directing agent. A formation mechanism of such rings is proposed on the basis of the formation of CaCO3 nanoparticles in unstructured block copolymer assemblies with subsequent aggregation of these primary nanoparticles. This leads to the formation of a polymer concentration gradient from the inside to the outside of the particle. As the polymer contains multiple chelating units, this leads to a selective dissolution of the center of the particle.

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