Preparation of asymmetrically nanoparticle-supported, monodisperse composite dumbbells by protruding a smooth polymer bulge from rugged spheres

Daisuke Nagao, Kanako Goto, Haruyuki Ishii, Mikio Konno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


A novel method is proposed to create asymmetrically nanoparticle-supported, monodisperse composite dumbbells. The method consists of the three steps of double soap-free emulsion polymerizations before and after a heterocoagulation. In the first step, soap-free emulsion polymerization was conducted to cover silica cores with cross-linked poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) shells. Then, positively or negatively charged silica nanoparticles were heterocoagulated with the silica-PMMA core-shell particles. In the heterocoagulations, the nanoparticles surface-modified with a cationic silane coupling agent, 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane, were used as the positively charged ones, and silica nanoparticles without any treatment were used as the negatively charged ones. In the third step, soap-free polymerizations at different pH values were performed to protrude a polystyrene (PSt) bulge from the core-shell particles supporting the charged silica nanoparticles. In the polymerization, the core-shell particles heterocoagulated with the positively charged silica nanoparticles were aggregated in an acidic condition whereas the silica nanoparticles supported on the core-shell particles were dissolved in a basic condition. For the negatively charged silica nanoparticle, a PSt bulge was successfully protruded from the core-shell particle in acidic and neutral conditions without aggregation of the core-shell particles. The protrusion of the PSt bulge became distinctive when the number of heterocoagulated silica nanoparticles per core-shell particle was increased. Additional heterocoagulation experiments, in which positively or negatively charged magnetite nanoparticles were mixed with the asymmetrically nanoparticle- supported composite dumbbells, confirmed direct exposure of silica nanoparticles to the outer solvent phase.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13302-13307
Number of pages6
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Nov 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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