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Séminaire de Sonja Castillo

Colloidal cubes : synthesis and application


Sonja Castillo

Van ’t Hoff Laboratory for Physical and Colloid Chemistry | Debye Institute | Universiteit Utrecht| Padualaan 8, 3584 CH Utrecht

Colloidal cubes : synthesis and application

Colloidal cubes with their characteristic cubic shape yet rounded corners have increasingly gained interest due to their distinct phase behavior, observed both experimentally and by computational studies [1-4]. Clearly, proper control over the particle shape, size and chemical properties is essential for experimental studies using the cubes as model system. Moreover, it enables the applicability of the cubes in fields such as materials science and catalysis. Therefore, we focused not on the physical behavior of colloidal cubes but instead on their synthesis, modification and chemical behavior. We are now able to produce core-shell colloidal cubes composed of an iron oxide (hematite, α-Fe2O3) core and silica shell, as well as hollow silica cubes. We can tune the porosity of the silica shell from microporous to mesoporous by means of surface-protected silica etching [5] or by surfactant-templating. Additionally, we explored the application of the colloidal cubes for materials science by designating functionality. For instance, densely packed core-shell hematite@silica cubes were applied as catalyst for the degradation of organic dyes in the presence of hydrogen peroxide (Fenton reaction).

[1] Rossi, L. ; Sacanna, S. ; Irvine, W.T.M. ; Chaikin, P.M. ; Pine, D.J. ; Philipse, A.P. Soft Matter 2011, 7, 4139-4142
[2] Meijer, J.M. ; Hagemans, F. ; Rossi, L. ; Byelov, D.V. ; Castillo, S.I.R. ; Snigirev, A. ; Snigireva, I. ; Philipse, A.P. ; Petukhov, A.V. Langmuir 2012, 28, 7631−7638
[3] Jiao, Y. ; Stillinger, F.H. ; Torquato, S. Phys. Rev. E 2010, 81, 041304
[4] Ni, R. ; Gantapara, A.P. ; de Graaf, J. ; van Roij, R. ; Dijkstra, M. Soft Matter 2012, 8, 8826-8834
[5] Castillo, S.I.R. ; Ouhajji, S. ; Fokker, S. ; Erné, B.H. ; Schneijdenberg, C.T.W.M. ; Thies-Weesie, D.M.E. ; Philipse, A.P. Microporous and Mesoporous Materials 2014, accepted