Skip to main content Accessibility help

Self-Organization of Nanoscopic Building Blocks into Ordered Assemblies

  • Mark A. Horsch (a1), Christopher R. Iacovella (a1), Zhenli Zhang (a1) and Sharon C. Glotzer (a1) (a2)


We studied the self-assembly of nanoscopic building blocks comprised of polymer-tethered nanoparticles using computer simulation and predict that these building blocks can assemble into mono- and multi-layer sheets and shells. The simulations further demonstrate that for some nanoparticle geometries and tethered nanoparticle topologies, ideas from block copolymers, surfactants and liquid crystals can be used to predict the ordered morphologies attained via self- assembly and that for specific cases the morphologies are consistent with Israelachvili packing rules.


Corresponding author

Corresponding author:


Hide All
1. Murray, C.B., Kagan, C.R., and Bawendi, M.G., Synthesis and characterization of monodisperse nanocrystals and close-packed nanocrystal assemblies. Annual Review of Materials Science, 2000. 30: p. 545610.
2. Busbee, B.D., Obare, S.O., and Murphy, C.J., An improved synthesis of high-aspect-ratio gold nanorods. Advanced Materials, 2003. 15(5): p. 414416.
3. Sun, Y.G. and Xia, Y.N., Shape-controlled synthesis of gold and silver nanoparticles. Science, 2002. 298(5601): p. 21762179.
4. van der Kooij, F.M., Kassapidou, K., and Lekkerkerker, H.N.W., Liquid crystal phase transitions in suspensions of polydisperse plate-like particles. Nature, 2000. 406(6798): p. 868871.
5. Pinna, N. et al. , Triangular CdS nanocrystals: Structural and optical studies. Advanced Materials, 2001. 13(4): p. 261264.
6. Jin, R.C. et al. , Photoinduced conversion of silver nanospheres to nanoprisms. Science, 2001. 294(5548): p. 19011903.
7. Kim, B.S. and Mather, P.T., Amphiphilic telechelics incorporating polyhedral oligosilsesquioxane: 1. Synthesis and characterization. Macromolecules, 2002. 35(22): p. 83788384.
8. Lamm, M.H., Chen, T., and Glotzer, S.C., Simulated assembly of nanostructured organic/inorganic networks. Nano Letters, 2003. 3(8): p. 989994.
9. Mirkin, C.A. et al. , A DNA-based method for rationally assembling nanoparticles into macroscopic materials. Nature, 1996. 382(6592): p. 607609.
10. Chen, T. Lamm, M.H. and Glotzer, S.C., preprint
11. Zhang, Z.L., Horsch, M.A., Lamm, M.H., Glotzer, S.C., Tethered nano building blocks: Toward a conceptual framework for nanoparticle self-assembly. Nano Letters, 2003. 3(10): p. 13411346.
12. Bates, F.S. and Fredrickson, G.H., Block copolymers - Designer soft materials. Physics Today, 1999. 52(2): p. 3238.
13. Glotzer, S.C. and Paul, W., Molecular and mesoscale simulation methods for polymer materials. Annual Review of Materials Research, 2002. 32: p. 401436.
14. Horsch, M.A., Zhang, Z.L., and Glotzer, S.C.. Tethered Nanoparticles: A New Class of “Macromolecule” for Bio-inspired Materials. (Mater. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc. Vol. EXS–1, 2003) pp. H2.5.1–H2.5.3
15. Israelachvili, J., Intermolecular and Surface Forces. 2nd ed. 1992: London: Academic Press. p.366382
16. (Iacovella, C.R. Horsch, M.A. Zhang, Z.L. and Glotzer, S.C., manuscript in preparation).
17. Halperin, A., Rod Coil Copolymers - Their Aggregation Behavior. Macromolecules, 1990. 23(10): p. 27242731.
18. Chen, J.T. et al. , Zigzag Morphology of a Poly(Styrene-B-Hexyl Isocyanate) Rod Coil Block-Copolymer. Macromolecules, 1995. 28(5): p. 16881697.
19. (Horsch, M.A. Zhang, Z.L. and Glotzer, S.C., manuscript in preparation).
20. (Horsch, M.A. Zhang, Z.L. Iacovella, C.R. and Glotzer, S.C., manuscript in preparation).


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed