Templating Interfacial Nanoparticle Assemblies via in Situ Techniques

Lisa Tran, Martin F. Haase*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In situ surface modification of nanoparticles has a rich industrial history, but in recent years, it has also received increased attention in the field of directed self-assembly. In situ techniques rely on components within a Pickering emulsion system, such as amphiphiles that act as hydrophobizers or ionic species that screen charges, to drive the interfacial assembly of particles. Instead of stepwise procedures to chemically tune the particle wettability, in situ methods use elements already present within the system to alter the nanoparticle interfacial behavior, often depending on Coulombic interactions to simplify operations. The surface modifications are not contingent on specific chemical reactions, which further enables a multitude of possible nanoparticles to be used within a given system. In recent studies, in situ methods have been combined with external means of shaping the interface to produce materials with high interfacial areas and complex geometries. These systems have facilely tunable properties, enabling their use in an extensive array of applications. In this feature article, in honor of the late Prof. Helmuth Möhwald, we review how in situ techniques have influenced the development of soft, advanced materials, covering the fundamental interfacial phenomena with an outlook on materials science.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8584-8602
Number of pages19
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes


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