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Reference type: Journal
Authors: Poovarodom S, Bass JD, Hwang SJ, Katz A
Article Title: Investigation of the core-shell interface in gold@silica nanoparticles: A silica imprinting approach.
Publication date: 2005
Journal: Langmuir
Volume: 21
Issue: (26)
Page numbers: 12348-12356.
DOI: 10.1021/la052006d

Abstract: The nature of the self-assembled core-shell interface in gold@silica nanoparticles synthesized via a 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane (APTMS) route is investigated using materials synthesis as a sensitive tool for elucidating interfacial composition and organization. Our approach involves condensation of the gold@silica nanoparticles within a silica framework for synthesis of a composite gold-silica material containing ~30 wt % gold. This material contains one of the highest gold loadings reported, but maintains gold core isolation as ascertained via a single surface plasmon resonance absorption band frequency corresponding to that of gold nanoparticles in dilute aqueous solution. The immobilized gold cores are subsequently etched using cyanide anion for the synthesis of templated porosity, which corresponds to the space that was occupied by the gold. Characterization of immobilized amines is performed using probe molecule binding experiments, which demonstrate a lack of accessible amines after gold removal. Solid-state 13C CPMAS NMR spectroscopy on these materials demonstrates that the amount of amine immobilization must be less than 10% of the expected yield, assuming that all of the APTMS becomes bound to the gold nanoparticle template. These results require a core-shell interface in the gold@silica nanoparticles that is predominantly occupied by inorganic silicate species, such as Si-O-Si and Si-OH, rather than primary amines. Such a result is likely a consequence of the weak interaction between primary amines and gold in aqueous solution. Our method for investigating the core-shell interface of gold@silica nanoparticles is generalizable for other interfacial structures and enables the synthesis of bulk imprinted silica using colloidal templates.

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