Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A Small Golden Cosmos

29.08.2014

Planet–satellite nanostructures from gold nanoparticles and RAFT star polymers

The cosmos in miniature: German researchers have produced nanoparticles surrounded by a group of smaller nanoparticles like a planet orbited by satellites.


They equipped larger gold nanoparticles with special star-shaped polymers, which in turn bind to smaller gold nanoparticles. As the researchers report in the journal Angewandte Chemie, it is possible to precisely control the distance between the tiny “satellites” and their central “planet” by means of the molecular weight—and thus the chain length—of the polymers.

Like all humans, researchers like good aesthetics. They take pleasure in unusual nanoscopic architectures with ordered structures and are curious about what interesting physical properties are inherent to such structures. These properties can often be extremely useful.

For example, nanoarchitectures consisting of a central nanoparticle surrounded by smaller nanoparticles at a precisely defined distance could be used as sensors, as “rulers” for measuring biological nano-objects, and as transport systems to deliver drugs specifically to tumor cells. However, researchers had not previously found a method to easily and efficiently produce a variety of planet–satellite nanosystems—a critical requirement for the investigation and practical use of such nanoarchitectures.

Christin Rossner and Philipp Vana at the University of Göttingen have now developed such a technique. At its center are polymers produced by a RAFT (reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer) polymerization. RAFT is a technique for the targeted synthesis of polymers with a precisely defined degree of polymerization; it results in very uniform polymers with precisely controllable chain lengths.

Because this is a controlled process, it is also possible to synthesize more complicated molecular architectures, such as comb-shaped or star-shaped polymers. Rossner and Vana chose to use star polymers consisting of a center with four side chains coming out like rays. The side chains have trithiocarbonate groups at their ends. These groups bind very well to gold surfaces.

The researchers treated gold nanoparticles with these star polymers. Two to three of the “rays” bind to the surface while the remaining one or two rays remain free and available to bind the smaller satellite gold nanoparticles later. The molecular weight of the star polymers—and thus the length of the rays—can be used to precisely control the distances between the planets and satellites. The satellites can also be equipped with polymer chains that have certain chemical groups on their ends. It is thus possible to make gold nanoparticle scaffolds with a variety of reactive groups at a defined distance form the central core.

About the Author

Dr. Philipp Vana is Professor of Macromolecular Chemistry at the University of Göttingen. His research focuses on tailoring macromolecules and nanocomposites using controlled polymerizations and on the design of new functional polymers. He is also Director of the Institute of Physical Chemistry in Göttingen and has been awarded several prizes and fellowships including the prestigious Heisenberg Professorship of the DFG.

Author: Philipp Vana, Universität Göttingen (Germany), http://www.mmc.chemie.uni-goettingen.de/

Title: Planet–Satellite Nanostructures Made To Order by RAFT Star Polymers

Angewandte Chemie International Edition, Permalink to the article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/anie.201406854

Philipp Vana | Angewandte Chemie

Further reports about: Cosmos RAFT nanoparticle nanoparticles polymerization properties satellites structures technique

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Nesting aids make agricultural fields attractive for bees
20.07.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht The Kitchen Sponge – Breeding Ground for Germs
20.07.2017 | Hochschule Furtwangen

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

Leipzig HTP-Forum discusses "hydrothermal processes" as a key technology for a biobased economy

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers create new technique for manipulating polarization of terahertz radiation

20.07.2017 | Information Technology

High-tech sensing illuminates concrete stress testing

20.07.2017 | Materials Sciences

First direct observation and measurement of ultra-fast moving vortices in superconductors

20.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>