Browsing all articles tagged with self-assembly

Lock and key mecanism for particle self-assembly

Physicists at the New York University Center for Soft Matter Research have created “handshaking” colloid particles that link together based on their shape rather than randomly. Their work, reported in Nature, marks the first time scientists have succeeded in programming colloid particles to join in this manner and offers a type of architecture that could enhance the creation of synthetic materials.

handshaking particles

The graphic above shows how the researchers developed a “lock and key” mechanism that allows specific particles to join together (image courtesy of Nature). “We expect these interactions to offer unprecedented opportunities for engineering smart composite particles, new functional materials, and microscopic machinery with mobile parts,” wrote the researchers.

read more