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Sample records for artificial light-harvesting self-assemble

  1. Combining light-harvesting and charge separation in a self-assembled artificial photosynthetic system based on perylenediimide chromophores.

    PubMed

    Rybtchinski, Boris; Sinks, Louise E; Wasielewski, Michael R

    2004-10-06

    Self-assembly of robust perylenediimide chromophores is used to produce an artificial light-harvesting antenna structure that in turn induces self-assembly of a functional special pair that undergoes ultrafast, quantitative charge separation. The structure consists of four 1,7-(3',5'-di-tert-butylphenoxy)perylene-3,4:9,10-perylene-3,4:9,10-bis(carboximide) (PDI) molecules attached to a single 1,7-bis(pyrrolidin-1-yl)perylene-3,4:9,10-perylene-3,4:9,10-bis(carboximide) (5PDI) core, which self-assembles to form (5PDI-PDI4)2 in toluene. The system is characterized using both structural methods (NMR, SAXS, mass spectroscopy, and GPC) and photophysical methods (UV-vis, time-resolved fluorescence, and femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy). Energy transfer from (PDI)2 to (5PDI)2 occurs with tau = 21 ps, followed by excited-state symmetry breaking of 1*(5PDI)2 to produce 5PDI*+-5PDI*- quantitatively with tau = 7 ps. The ion pair recombines with tau = 420 ps. Electron transfer occurs only in the dimeric system and does not occur in the disassembled monomer, thus mimicking both antenna and special pair function in photosynthesis.

  2. Quantum-dot-induced self-assembly of cricoid protein for light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Miao, Lu; Han, Jishu; Zhang, Hao; Zhao, Linlu; Si, Chengye; Zhang, Xiyu; Hou, Chunxi; Luo, Quan; Xu, Jiayun; Liu, Junqiu

    2014-04-22

    Stable protein one (SP1) has been demonstrated as an appealing building block to design highly ordered architectures, despite the hybrid assembly with other nano-objects still being a challenge. Herein, we developed a strategy to construct high-ordered protein nanostructures by electrostatic self-assembly of cricoid protein nanorings and globular quantum dots (QDs). Using multielectrostatic interactions between 12mer protein nanoring SP1 and oppositely charged CdTe QDs, highly ordered nanowires with sandwich structure were achieved by hybridized self-assembly. QDs with different sizes (QD1, 3-4 nm; QD2, 5-6 nm; QD3, ∼10 nm) would induce the self-assembly protein rings into various nanowires, subsequent bundles, and irregular networks in aqueous solution. Atomic force microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and dynamic light scattering characterizations confirmed that the size of QDs and the structural topology of the nanoring play critical functions in the formation of the superstructures. Furthermore, an ordered arrangement of QDs provides an ideal scaffold for designing the light-harvesting antenna. Most importantly, when different sized QDs (e.g., QD1 and QD3) self-assembled with SP1, an extremely efficient Förster resonance energy transfer was observed on these protein nanowires. The self-assembled protein nanostructures were demonstrated as a promising scaffold for the development of an artificial light-harvesting system.

  3. Peptide-Modulated Self-Assembly of Chromophores toward Biomimetic Light-Harvesting Nanoarchitectonics.

    PubMed

    Zou, Qianli; Liu, Kai; Abbas, Manzar; Yan, Xuehai

    2016-02-10

    Elegant self-assembling complexes by the combination of proteins/peptides with functional chromophores are decisively responsible for highly efficient light-harvesting and energy transfer in natural photosynthetic systems. Mimicking natural light-harvesting complexes through synthetic peptides is attractive due to their advantanges of programmable primary structure, tunable self-assembly architecture and easy availability in comparison to naturally occuring proteins. Here, an overview of recent progresses in the area of biomimetic light-harvesting nanoarchitectonics based on peptide-modulated self-assembly of chromophores is provided. Adjusting the organization of chromophores, either by creating peptide-chromophore conjugates or by the non-covalent assembly of peptides and chromophores are highlighted. The light-harvesting properties, especially the energy transfer of the biomimetic complexes are critically discussed. The applications of such complexes in the mineralization of inorganic nanoparticles, generation of molecular hydrogen and oxygen, and photosynthesis of bioactive molecules are also included.

  4. Self-assembled fluorescent hexaazatriphenylenes that act as a light-harvesting antenna.

    PubMed

    Ishi-i, Tsutomu; Murakami, Koh-ichi; Imai, Yusuke; Mataka, Shuntaro

    2006-07-21

    In this paper we report the self-assembling nature of fluorescent hexaazatriphenylenes (HATs) 6a-d with six alkyl/alkoxy-chain-containing biphenyl groups and their application to light-harvesting antennae. In a nonpolar solvent and the film state, the HAT derivatives form one-dimensional aggregates with an H-type parallel stacking mode, which were analyzed by 1H NMR, UV-vis, and steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy. When HAT derivative 7 with six perylenediimide moieties is incorporated into the one-dimensional aggregates, an efficient energy transfer takes place from the self-assembled HAT moiety as a light-harvesting antenna to the perylenediimide moiety as an energy acceptor. Further, when HAT derivative 8 with six triphenylamino moieties is newly added to the light-harvesting system, an intermolecular electron transfer occurs subsequently between the electron-accepting perylenediimide molecule and the electron-donating triphenylamino molecule.

  5. Self-assembled photosynthesis-inspired light harvesting material and solar cells containing the same

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Chinnasamy, Muthiah; Fan, Dazhong

    2009-12-15

    A solar cell is described that comprises: (a) a semiconductor charge separation material; (b) at least one electrode connected to the charge separation material; and (c) a light-harvesting film on the charge separation material, the light-harvesting film comprising non-covalently coupled, self-assembled units of porphyrinic macrocycles. The porphyrinic macrocycles preferably comprise: (i) an intramolecularly coordinated metal; (ii) a first coordinating substituent; and (iii) a second coordinating substituent opposite the first coordinating substituent. The porphyrinic macrocycles can be assembled by repeating intermolecular coordination complexes of the metal, the first coordinating substituent and the second coordinating substituent.

  6. Micelle-Induced Self-Assembling Protein Nanowires: Versatile Supramolecular Scaffolds for Designing the Light-Harvesting System.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hongcheng; Zhang, Xiyu; Miao, Lu; Zhao, Linlu; Luo, Quan; Xu, Jiayun; Liu, Junqiu

    2016-01-26

    Organic nanoparticle induced self-assembly of proteins with periodic nanostructures is a promising and burgeoning strategy to develop functional biomimetic nanomaterials. Cricoid proteins afford monodispersed and well-defined hollow centers, and can be used to multivalently interact with geometrically symmetric nanoparticles to form one-dimensional protein nanoarrays. Herein, we report that core-cross-linked micelles can direct cricoid stable protein one (SP1) to self-assembling nanowires through multiple electrostatic interactions. One micelle can act as an organic nanoparticle to interact with two central concaves of SP1 in an opposite orientation to form a sandwich structure, further controlling the assembly direction to supramolecular protein nanowires. The reported versatile supramolecular scaffolds can be optionally manipulated to develop multifunctional integrated or synergistic biomimetic nanomaterials. Artificial light-harvesting nanowires are further developed to mimic the energy transfer process of photosynthetic bacteria for their structural similarity, by means of labeling donor and acceptor chromophores to SP1 rings and spherical micelles, respectively. The absorbing energy can be transferred within the adjacent donors around the ring and shuttling the collected energy to the nearby acceptor chromophore. The artificial light-harvesting nanowires are designed by mimicking the structural characteristic of natural LH-2 complex, which are meaningful in exploring the photosynthesis process in vitro.

  7. A nanoscale bio-inspired light-harvesting system developed from self-assembled alkyl-functionalized metallochlorin nano-aggregates.

    PubMed

    Ocakoglu, Kasim; Joya, Khurram S; Harputlu, Ersan; Tarnowska, Anna; Gryko, Daniel T

    2014-08-21

    Self-assembled supramolecular organization of nano-structured biomimetic light-harvesting modules inside solid-state nano-templates can be exploited to develop excellent light-harvesting materials for artificial photosynthetic devices. We present here a hybrid light-harvesting system mimicking the chlorosomal structures of the natural photosynthetic system using synthetic zinc chlorin units (ZnChl-C6, ZnChl-C12 and ZnChl-C18) that are self-aggregated inside the anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) nano-channel membranes. AAO nano-templates were modified with a TiO2 matrix and functionalized with long hydrophobic chains to facilitate the formation of supramolecular Zn-chlorin aggregates. The transparent Zn-chlorin nano-aggregates inside the alkyl-TiO2 modified AAO nano-channels have a diameter of ∼120 nm in a 60 μm length channel. UV-Vis studies and fluorescence emission spectra further confirm the formation of the supramolecular ZnChl aggregates from monomer molecules inside the alkyl-functionalized nano-channels. Our results prove that the novel and unique method can be used to produce efficient and stable light-harvesting assemblies for effective solar energy capture through transparent and stable nano-channel ceramic materials modified with bio-mimetic molecular self-assembled nano-aggregates.

  8. Highly Efficient Photon Upconversion in Self-Assembled Light-Harvesting Molecular Systems

    PubMed Central

    Ogawa, Taku; Yanai, Nobuhiro; Monguzzi, Angelo; Kimizuka, Nobuo

    2015-01-01

    To meet the world’s demands on the development of sunlight-powered renewable energy production, triplet–triplet annihilation-based photon upconversion (TTA–UC) has raised great expectations. However, an ideal highly efficient, low-power, and in-air TTA–UC has not been achieved. Here, we report a novel self-assembly approach to achieve this, which enabled highly efficient TTA–UC even in the presence of oxygen. A newly developed lipophilic 9,10-diphenylanthracene-based emitter molecule functionalized with multiple hydrogen-bonding moieties spontaneously coassembled with a triplet sensitizer in organic media, showing efficient triplet sensitization and subsequent triplet energy migration among the preorganized chromophores. This supramolecular light-harvesting system shows a high UC quantum yield of 30% optimized at low excitation power in deaerated conditions. Significantly, the UC emission largely remains even in an air-saturated solution, and this approach is facilely applicable to organogel and solid-film systems. PMID:26057321

  9. Highly Efficient Photon Upconversion in Self-Assembled Light-Harvesting Molecular Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ogawa, Taku; Yanai, Nobuhiro; Monguzzi, Angelo; Kimizuka, Nobuo

    2015-06-01

    To meet the world’s demands on the development of sunlight-powered renewable energy production, triplet-triplet annihilation-based photon upconversion (TTA-UC) has raised great expectations. However, an ideal highly efficient, low-power, and in-air TTA-UC has not been achieved. Here, we report a novel self-assembly approach to achieve this, which enabled highly efficient TTA-UC even in the presence of oxygen. A newly developed lipophilic 9,10-diphenylanthracene-based emitter molecule functionalized with multiple hydrogen-bonding moieties spontaneously coassembled with a triplet sensitizer in organic media, showing efficient triplet sensitization and subsequent triplet energy migration among the preorganized chromophores. This supramolecular light-harvesting system shows a high UC quantum yield of 30% optimized at low excitation power in deaerated conditions. Significantly, the UC emission largely remains even in an air-saturated solution, and this approach is facilely applicable to organogel and solid-film systems.

  10. A nanoscale bio-inspired light-harvesting system developed from self-assembled alkyl-functionalized metallochlorin nano-aggregates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ocakoglu, Kasim; Joya, Khurram S.; Harputlu, Ersan; Tarnowska, Anna; Gryko, Daniel T.

    2014-07-01

    Self-assembled supramolecular organization of nano-structured biomimetic light-harvesting modules inside solid-state nano-templates can be exploited to develop excellent light-harvesting materials for artificial photosynthetic devices. We present here a hybrid light-harvesting system mimicking the chlorosomal structures of the natural photosynthetic system using synthetic zinc chlorin units (ZnChl-C6, ZnChl-C12 and ZnChl-C18) that are self-aggregated inside the anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) nano-channel membranes. AAO nano-templates were modified with a TiO2 matrix and functionalized with long hydrophobic chains to facilitate the formation of supramolecular Zn-chlorin aggregates. The transparent Zn-chlorin nano-aggregates inside the alkyl-TiO2 modified AAO nano-channels have a diameter of ~120 nm in a 60 μm length channel. UV-Vis studies and fluorescence emission spectra further confirm the formation of the supramolecular ZnChl aggregates from monomer molecules inside the alkyl-functionalized nano-channels. Our results prove that the novel and unique method can be used to produce efficient and stable light-harvesting assemblies for effective solar energy capture through transparent and stable nano-channel ceramic materials modified with bio-mimetic molecular self-assembled nano-aggregates.Self-assembled supramolecular organization of nano-structured biomimetic light-harvesting modules inside solid-state nano-templates can be exploited to develop excellent light-harvesting materials for artificial photosynthetic devices. We present here a hybrid light-harvesting system mimicking the chlorosomal structures of the natural photosynthetic system using synthetic zinc chlorin units (ZnChl-C6, ZnChl-C12 and ZnChl-C18) that are self-aggregated inside the anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) nano-channel membranes. AAO nano-templates were modified with a TiO2 matrix and functionalized with long hydrophobic chains to facilitate the formation of supramolecular Zn-chlorin aggregates. The

  11. Artificial photosynthetic reaction centers coupled to light-harvesting antennas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghosh, Pulak Kumar; Smirnov, Anatoly Yu.; Nori, Franco

    2011-12-01

    We analyze a theoretical model for energy and electron transfer in an artificial photosynthetic system. The photosystem consists of a molecular triad (i.e., with a donor, a photosensitive unit, and an acceptor) coupled to four accessory light-harvesting-antenna pigments. The resonant energy transfer from the antennas to the artificial reaction center (the molecular triad) is described here by the Förster mechanism. We consider two different kinds of arrangements of the accessory light-harvesting pigments around the reaction center. The first arrangement allows direct excitation transfer to the reaction center from all the surrounding pigments. The second configuration transmits energy via a cascade mechanism along a chain of light-harvesting chromophores, where only one chromophore is connected to the reaction center. We show that the artificial photosynthetic system using the cascade energy transfer absorbs photons in a broader wavelength range and converts their energy into electricity with a higher efficiency than the system based on direct couplings between all the antenna chromophores and the reaction center.

  12. Artificial photosynthetic reaction centers coupled to light-harvesting antennas.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Pulak Kumar; Smirnov, Anatoly Yu; Nori, Franco

    2011-12-01

    We analyze a theoretical model for energy and electron transfer in an artificial photosynthetic system. The photosystem consists of a molecular triad (i.e., with a donor, a photosensitive unit, and an acceptor) coupled to four accessory light-harvesting-antenna pigments. The resonant energy transfer from the antennas to the artificial reaction center (the molecular triad) is described here by the Förster mechanism. We consider two different kinds of arrangements of the accessory light-harvesting pigments around the reaction center. The first arrangement allows direct excitation transfer to the reaction center from all the surrounding pigments. The second configuration transmits energy via a cascade mechanism along a chain of light-harvesting chromophores, where only one chromophore is connected to the reaction center. We show that the artificial photosynthetic system using the cascade energy transfer absorbs photons in a broader wavelength range and converts their energy into electricity with a higher efficiency than the system based on direct couplings between all the antenna chromophores and the reaction center.

  13. Artificial light-harvesting arrays for solar energy conversion.

    PubMed

    Harriman, Anthony

    2015-07-28

    Solar fuel production, the process whereby an energy-rich substance is produced using electrons provided by water under exposure to sunlight, requires the cooperative accumulation of multiple numbers of photons. Identifying the optimum reagents is a difficult challenge, even without imposing the restriction that these same materials must function as both sensitiser and catalyst. The blockade caused by an inadequate supply of photons at the catalytic sites might be resolved by making use of an artificial light-harvesting array whose sole purpose is to funnel photons of appropriate frequency to the active catalyst, which can now be a dark reagent. Here we consider several types of artificial photon collectors built from fluorescent modules interconnected via electronic energy transfer. Emphasis is placed on the materials aspects and on establishing the basic operating principles.

  14. Influence of phospholipid composition on self-assembly and energy-transfer efficiency in networks of light-harvesting 2 complexes.

    PubMed

    Sumino, Ayumi; Dewa, Takehisa; Noji, Tomoyasu; Nakano, Yuki; Watanabe, Natsuko; Hildner, Richard; Bösch, Nils; Köhler, Jürgen; Nango, Mamoru

    2013-09-12

    In the photosynthetic membrane of purple bacteria networks of light-harvesting 2 (LH2) complexes capture the sunlight and transfer the excitation energy. In order to investigate the mutual relationship between the supramolecular organization of the pigment-protein complexes and their biological function, the LH2 complexes were reconstituted into three types of phospholipid membranes, consisting of L-α-phosphatidylglycerol (PG), L-α-phosphatidylcholine (PC), and L-α-phosphatidylethanolamine (PE)/PG/cardiolipin (CL). Atomic force microscopy (AFM) revealed that the type of phospholipids had a crucial influence on the clustering tendency of the LH2 complexes increased from PG over PC to PE/PG/CL, where the LH2 complexes formed large, densely packed clusters. Time-resolved spectroscopy uncovered a strong quenching of the LH2 fluorescence that is ascribed to singlet-singlet and singlet-triplet annihilation by an efficient energy transfer between the LH2 complexes in the artificial membrane systems. Quantitative analysis reveals that the intercomplex energy transfer efficiency varies strongly as a function of the morphology of the nanostructure, namely in the order PE/PG/CL > PC > PG, which is in line with the clustering tendency of LH2 observed by AFM. These results suggest a strong influence of the phospholipids on the self-assembly of LH2 complexes into networks and concomitantly on the intercomplex energy transfer efficiency.

  15. Rational syntheses of cyclic hexameric porphyrin arrays for studies of self-assembling light-harvesting systems.

    PubMed

    Yu, L; Lindsey, J S

    2001-11-02

    oxaporphyrin, have been synthesized for use as guests in the cyclic hexamers, affording self-assembled arrays for light-harvesting studies.

  16. Self-assembly of Artificial Actin Filaments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grosenick, Christopher; Cheng, Shengfeng

    Actin Filaments are long, double-helical biopolymers that make up the cytoskeleton along with microtubules and intermediate filaments. In order to further understand the self-assembly process of these biopolymers, a model to recreate actin filament geometry was developed. A monomer in the shape of a bent rod with vertical and lateral binding sites was designed to assemble into single or double helices. With Molecular Dynamics simulations, a variety of phases were observed to form by varying the strength of the binding sites. Ignoring lateral binding sites, we have found a narrow range of binding strengths that lead to long single helices via various growth pathways. When lateral binding strength is introduced, double helices begin to form. These double helices self-assemble into substantially more stable structures than their single helix counterparts. We have found double helices to form long filaments at about half the vertical binding strength of single helices. Surprisingly, we have found that triple helices occasionally form, indicating the importance of structural regulation in the self-assembly of biopolymers.

  17. Donor-acceptor star-shaped conjugated macroelectrolytes: synthesis, light-harvesting properties, and self-assembly-induced Förster resonance energy transfer.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Li; Liu, Cheng-Fang; Xu, Wei-Dong; Jiang, Yi; Lai, Wen-Yong; Huang, Wei

    2015-06-04

    A novel series of donor-acceptor star-shaped conjugated macroelectrolytes (CMEs), denoted as 4FTs, including anionic carboxylic acid sodium groups (4FNaT), neutral diethanolamine groups (4FNOHT), and cationic ammonium groups (4FNBrT), were designed, synthesized, and explored as an excellent platform to investigate the impact of various polar pendent groups on self-assembly behaviors. The resulting CMEs with donor-acceptor star-shaped architectures exhibited distinct light-harvesting properties. The interactions between 4FTs and TrNBr, a star-shaped monodisperse CME grafted with cationic quaternary ammonium side chains, were investigated in H2O and CH3OH using steady-state, time-resolved fluorescence, dynamic light scattering (DLS), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Highly favored energy transfer has been proven by the excellent spectral overlap between TrNBr fluorescence and 4FTs absorptions which can be tuned by adjusting the pendent polar groups and solvents. It is suggested that self-assembled structures are formed between TrNBr and 4FNaT, while there is no obvious change for TrNBr/4FNOHT and TrNBr/4FNBrT in both H2O and CH3OH at low concentrations (<10(-6) M). This result is confirmed by the change of the TrNBr and 4FTs fluorescence properties and the time-resolved fluorescence data. The overall results manifest that at low concentrations the self-assembly between TrNBr and 4FTs is dominated by the electrostatic interactions. This study suggests that the functionalization of pendent polar groups of star-shaped CMEs has proven to be effective to modulate the self-assembly behaviors in dilute solutions and thus provide a strategy to further manage the optoelectronic properties.

  18. Self-assembly of a hexagonal supramolecular light-harvesting array from chlorophyll a trefoil building blocks.

    PubMed

    Gunderson, Victoria L; Conron, Sarah M Mickley; Wasielewski, Michael R

    2010-01-21

    Small- and wide-angle X-ray scattering in solution reveals that chlorophyll (Chl) trefoils self-assemble in the presence of 1,4-diazabicyclo[2.2.2]octane (DABCO) to yield supramolecular cyclic trimers. Two Chls of each trefoil coordinate to DABCO to form the vertices of the hexagonal structure, while the remaining Chl acts like a substituent on the benzene-like assembly.

  19. Controlling the efficiency of an artificial light-harvesting complex

    PubMed Central

    Savolainen, Janne; Fanciulli, Riccardo; Dijkhuizen, Niels; Moore, Ana L.; Hauer, Jürgen; Buckup, Tiago; Motzkus, Marcus; Herek, Jennifer L.

    2008-01-01

    Adaptive femtosecond pulse shaping in an evolutionary learning loop is applied to a bioinspired dyad molecule that closely mimics the early-time photophysics of the light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) photosynthetic antenna complex. Control over the branching ratio between the two competing pathways for energy flow, internal conversion (IC) and energy transfer (ET), is realized. We show that by pulse shaping it is possible to increase independently the relative yield of both channels, ET and IC. The optimization results are analyzed by using Fourier analysis, which gives direct insight to the mechanism featuring quantum interference of a low-frequency mode. The results from the closed-loop experiments are repeatable and robust and demonstrate the power of coherent control experiments as a spectroscopic tool (i.e., quantum-control spectroscopy) capable of revealing functionally relevant molecular properties that are hidden from conventional techniques. PMID:18509052

  20. Hybrid artificial photosynthetic systems comprising semiconductors as light harvesters and biomimetic complexes as molecular cocatalysts.

    PubMed

    Wen, Fuyu; Li, Can

    2013-11-19

    Solar fuel production through artificial photosynthesis may be a key to generating abundant and clean energy, thus addressing the high energy needs of the world's expanding population. As the crucial components of photosynthesis, the artificial photosynthetic system should be composed of a light harvester (e.g., semiconductor or molecular dye), a reduction cocatalyst (e.g., hydrogenase mimic, noble metal), and an oxidation cocatalyst (e.g., photosystem II mimic for oxygen evolution from water oxidation). Solar fuel production catalyzed by an artificial photosynthetic system starts from the absorption of sunlight by the light harvester, where charge separation takes place, followed by a charge transfer to the reduction and oxidation cocatalysts, where redox reaction processes occur. One of the most challenging problems is to develop an artificial photosynthetic solar fuel production system that is both highly efficient and stable. The assembly of cocatalysts on the semiconductor (light harvester) not only can facilitate the charge separation, but also can lower the activation energy or overpotential for the reactions. An efficient light harvester loaded with suitable reduction and oxidation cocatalysts is the key for high efficiency of artificial photosynthetic systems. In this Account, we describe our strategy of hybrid photocatalysts using semiconductors as light harvesters with biomimetic complexes as molecular cocatalysts to construct efficient and stable artificial photosynthetic systems. We chose semiconductor nanoparticles as light harvesters because of their broad spectral absorption and relatively robust properties compared with a natural photosynthesis system. Using biomimetic complexes as cocatalysts can significantly facilitate charge separation via fast charge transfer from the semiconductor to the molecular cocatalysts and also catalyze the chemical reactions of solar fuel production. The hybrid photocatalysts supply us with a platform to study the

  1. Out of the cleanroom, self-assembled magnetic artificial cilia.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ye; Gao, Yang; Wyss, Hans; Anderson, Patrick; den Toonder, Jaap

    2013-09-07

    Micro-sized hair-like structures, such as cilia, are abundant in nature and have various functionalities. Many efforts have been made to mimic the fluid pumping function of cilia, but most of the fabrication processes for these "artificial cilia" are tedious and expensive, hindering their practical application. In this paper a cost-effective in situ fabrication technique for artificial cilia is demonstrated. The cilia are constructed by self-assembly of micron sized magnetic beads and encapsulated with soft polymer coatings. Actuation of the cilia induces an effective fluid flow, and the cilia lengths and distribution can be adjusted by varying the magnetic bead concentration and fabrication parameters.

  2. Vibronic origin of long-lived coherence in an artificial molecular light harvester

    PubMed Central

    Lim, James; Paleček, David; Caycedo-Soler, Felipe; Lincoln, Craig N.; Prior, Javier; von Berlepsch, Hans; Huelga, Susana F.; Plenio, Martin B.; Zigmantas, Donatas; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-01-01

    Natural and artificial light-harvesting processes have recently gained new interest. Signatures of long-lasting coherence in spectroscopic signals of biological systems have been repeatedly observed, albeit their origin is a matter of ongoing debate, as it is unclear how the loss of coherence due to interaction with the noisy environments in such systems is averted. Here we report experimental and theoretical verification of coherent exciton–vibrational (vibronic) coupling as the origin of long-lasting coherence in an artificial light harvester, a molecular J-aggregate. In this macroscopically aligned tubular system, polarization-controlled 2D spectroscopy delivers an uncongested and specific optical response as an ideal foundation for an in-depth theoretical description. We derive analytical expressions that show under which general conditions vibronic coupling leads to prolonged excited-state coherence. PMID:26158602

  3. Vibronic origin of long-lived coherence in an artificial molecular light harvester.

    PubMed

    Lim, James; Paleček, David; Caycedo-Soler, Felipe; Lincoln, Craig N; Prior, Javier; von Berlepsch, Hans; Huelga, Susana F; Plenio, Martin B; Zigmantas, Donatas; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-07-09

    Natural and artificial light-harvesting processes have recently gained new interest. Signatures of long-lasting coherence in spectroscopic signals of biological systems have been repeatedly observed, albeit their origin is a matter of ongoing debate, as it is unclear how the loss of coherence due to interaction with the noisy environments in such systems is averted. Here we report experimental and theoretical verification of coherent exciton-vibrational (vibronic) coupling as the origin of long-lasting coherence in an artificial light harvester, a molecular J-aggregate. In this macroscopically aligned tubular system, polarization-controlled 2D spectroscopy delivers an uncongested and specific optical response as an ideal foundation for an in-depth theoretical description. We derive analytical expressions that show under which general conditions vibronic coupling leads to prolonged excited-state coherence.

  4. Extension of Light-Harvesting Ability of Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Complex 2 (LH2) through Ultrafast Energy Transfer from Covalently Attached Artificial Chromophores.

    PubMed

    Yoneda, Yusuke; Noji, Tomoyasu; Katayama, Tetsuro; Mizutani, Naoto; Komori, Daisuke; Nango, Mamoru; Miyasaka, Hiroshi; Itoh, Shigeru; Nagasawa, Yutaka; Dewa, Takehisa

    2015-10-14

    Introducing appropriate artificial components into natural biological systems could enrich the original functionality. To expand the available wavelength range of photosynthetic bacterial light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2 from Rhodopseudomonas acidophila 10050), artificial fluorescent dye (Alexa Fluor 647: A647) was covalently attached to N- and C-terminal Lys residues in LH2 α-polypeptides with a molar ratio of A647/LH2 ≃ 9/1. Fluorescence and transient absorption spectroscopies revealed that intracomplex energy transfer from A647 to intrinsic chromophores of LH2 (B850) occurs in a multiexponential manner, with time constants varying from 440 fs to 23 ps through direct and B800-mediated indirect pathways. Kinetic analyses suggested that B800 chromophores mediate faster energy transfer, and the mechanism was interpretable in terms of Förster theory. This study demonstrates that a simple attachment of external chromophores with a flexible linkage can enhance the light harvesting activity of LH2 without affecting inherent functions of energy transfer, and can achieve energy transfer in the subpicosecond range. Addition of external chromophores, thus, represents a useful methodology for construction of advanced hybrid light-harvesting systems that afford solar energy in the broad spectrum.

  5. Artificial transmembrane ion channels from self-assembling peptide nanotubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghadiri, M. Reza; Granja, Juan R.; Buehler, Lukas K.

    1994-05-01

    NATURALLY occurring membrane channels and pores are formed from a large family of diverse proteins, peptides and organic secon-dary metabolites whose vital biological functions include control of ion flow, signal transduction, molecular transport and produc-tion of cellular toxins. But despite the availability of a large amount of biochemical information about these molecules1, the design and synthesis of artificial systems that can mimic the bio-logical function of natural compounds remains a formidable task2-12. Here we present a simple strategy for the design of artifi-cial membrane ion channels based on a self-assembled cylindrical β-sheet peptide architecture13. Our systems-essentially stacks of peptide rings-display good channel-mediated ion-transport activ-ity with rates exceeding 107 ions s-1, rivalling the performance of many naturally occurring counterparts. Such molecular assemblies should find use in the design of novel cytotoxic agents, membrane transport vehicles and drug-delivery systems.

  6. Exploiting Collective Effects to Direct Light Absorption in Natural and Artificial Light-Harvesters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schroeder, Christopher

    Photosynthesis---the conversion of sunlight to chemical energy---is fundamental for supporting life on our planet. Despite its importance, the physical principles that underpin the primary steps of photosynthesis, from photon absorption to electronic charge separation, remain to be understood in full. Electronic coherence within tightly-packed light-harvesting (LH) units or within individual reaction centers (RCs) has been recognized as an important ingredient for a complete understanding of the excitation energy transfer (EET) dynamics. However, the electronic coherence across units---RC and LH or LH and LH---has been consistently neglected as it does not play a significant role during these relatively slow transfer processes. Here, we turn our attention to the absorption process, which, as we will show, has a much shorter built-in timescale. We demonstrate that the---often overlooked---spatially extended but short-lived excitonic delocalization plays a relevant role in general photosynthetic systems. Most strikingly, we find that absorption intensity is, quite generally, redistributed from LH units to the RC, increasing the number of excitations which can effect charge separation without further transfer steps. A biomemetic nano-system is proposed which is predicted to funnel excitation to the RC-analogue, and hence is the first step towards exploiting these new design principles for efficient artificial light-harvesting.

  7. Functionalized dye encapsulated polymer nanoparticles attached with a BSA scaffold as efficient antenna materials for artificial light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Jana, Bikash; Bhattacharyya, Santanu; Patra, Amitava

    2016-09-21

    A potential strategy for a new generation light harvesting system is multi-chromophoric donor-acceptor pairs where light energy is absorbed by an antenna complex and subsequently transfers its energy to the acceptor via energy transfer. Here, we design a system of a functionalized polymer nanoparticle-protein scaffold for efficient light harvesting and white light generation where a dye doped polymer nanoparticle acts as a donor and a dye encapsulated BSA protein acts as an acceptor. Analysis reveals that 91.3% energy transfer occurs from the dye doped polymer nanoparticle to the dye encapsulated BSA protein. The antenna effect of this light harvesting system is found to be 31 at a donor to acceptor ratio of 0.82 : 1 which is unprecedented. The enhanced effective molar extinction coefficient of the acceptor dye is potential for the light harvesting system. Bright white light emission with a quantum yield of 14% under single wavelength excitation is obtained by changing the ratio of donor to acceptor. Analysis reveals that the efficient energy transfer in this polymer-protein assembly may open up new possibilities in designing artificial light harvesting systems for future applications.

  8. Guest-induced photophysical property switching of artificial light-harvesting dendrimers.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Young-Hwan; Son, Minjung; Yoon, Hongsik; Kim, Pyosang; Lee, Do-Hyung; Kim, Dongho; Jang, Woo-Dong

    2014-07-01

    An artificial light-harvesting multiporphyrin dendrimer (8P(Zn)P(FB)) composed of a focal freebase porphyrin (P(FB)) with eight zinc(II) porphyrin (P(Zn)) wings exhibited unique photophysical property switching in response to specific guest molecule binding. UV/Vis titration studies indicated stable 1:2 host-guest complex formation between 8P(Zn)P(FB) and meso-tetrakis(4-pyridyl)-porphyrin (TPyP) for which the first and second association constants were estimated to be >10(8) M(-1) and 3.0×10(7) M(-1), respectively. 8P(Zn)P(FB) originally shows 94% energy transfer efficiency from P(Zn) to the focal P(FB). By the formation of the host-guest complex (8P(Zn)P(FB)⋅2TPyP) the emission intensity of 8P(Zn)P(FB) is significantly decreased, and an ultrafast charge separation state is generated. The energy transfer process from P(Zn) wings to the P(FB) core in 8P(Zn)P(FB) is almost entirely switched to an electron transfer process by the formation of 8P(Zn)P(FB)⋅2TPyP.

  9. Design and construction of self-assembling supramolecular protein complexes using artificial and fusion proteins as nanoscale building blocks.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Naoya; Arai, Ryoichi

    2017-02-01

    The central goal of nanobiotechnology is to design and construct novel biomaterials of nanometer sizes. In this short review, we describe recent progress of several approaches for designing and creating artificial self-assembling protein complexes and primarily focus on the following biotechnological strategies for using artificial and fusion proteins as nanoscale building blocks: fusion proteins designed for symmetrical self-assembly; three-dimensional domain-swapped oligomers; self-assembling designed coiled-coil peptide modules; metal-directed self-assembling engineered proteins; computationally designed self-assembling de novo proteins; and self-assembling protein nanobuilding blocks (PN-Blocks) using an intermolecularly folded dimeric de novo protein. These state-of-the-art nanobiotechnologies for designing supramolecular protein complexes will facilitate the development of novel functional nanobiomaterials.

  10. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-09-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen.

  11. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-01-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen. PMID:27622274

  12. Design and self-assembly of simple coat proteins for artificial viruses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez-Garcia, Armando; Kraft, Daniela J.; Janssen, Anne F. J.; Bomans, Paul H. H.; Sommerdijk, Nico A. J. M.; Thies-Weesie, Dominique M. E.; Favretto, Marco E.; Brock, Roland; de Wolf, Frits A.; Werten, Marc W. T.; van der Schoot, Paul; Stuart, Martien Cohen; de Vries, Renko

    2014-09-01

    Viruses are among the simplest biological systems and are highly effective vehicles for the delivery of genetic material into susceptible host cells. Artificial viruses can be used as model systems for providing insights into natural viruses and can be considered a testing ground for developing artificial life. Moreover, they are used in biomedical and biotechnological applications, such as targeted delivery of nucleic acids for gene therapy and as scaffolds in material science. In a natural setting, survival of viruses requires that a significant fraction of the replicated genomes be completely protected by coat proteins. Complete protection of the genome is ensured by a highly cooperative supramolecular process between the coat proteins and the nucleic acids, which is based on reversible, weak and allosteric interactions only. However, incorporating this type of supramolecular cooperativity into artificial viruses remains challenging. Here, we report a rational design for a self-assembling minimal viral coat protein based on simple polypeptide domains. Our coat protein features precise control over the cooperativity of its self-assembly with single DNA molecules to finally form rod-shaped virus-like particles. We confirm the validity of our design principles by showing that the kinetics of self-assembly of our virus-like particles follows a previous model developed for tobacco mosaic virus. We show that our virus-like particles protect DNA against enzymatic degradation and transfect cells with considerable efficiency, making them promising delivery vehicles.

  13. Design and self-assembly of simple coat proteins for artificial viruses.

    PubMed

    Hernandez-Garcia, Armando; Kraft, Daniela J; Janssen, Anne F J; Bomans, Paul H H; Sommerdijk, Nico A J M; Thies-Weesie, Dominique M E; Favretto, Marco E; Brock, Roland; de Wolf, Frits A; Werten, Marc W T; van der Schoot, Paul; Stuart, Martien Cohen; de Vries, Renko

    2014-09-01

    Viruses are among the simplest biological systems and are highly effective vehicles for the delivery of genetic material into susceptible host cells. Artificial viruses can be used as model systems for providing insights into natural viruses and can be considered a testing ground for developing artificial life. Moreover, they are used in biomedical and biotechnological applications, such as targeted delivery of nucleic acids for gene therapy and as scaffolds in material science. In a natural setting, survival of viruses requires that a significant fraction of the replicated genomes be completely protected by coat proteins. Complete protection of the genome is ensured by a highly cooperative supramolecular process between the coat proteins and the nucleic acids, which is based on reversible, weak and allosteric interactions only. However, incorporating this type of supramolecular cooperativity into artificial viruses remains challenging. Here, we report a rational design for a self-assembling minimal viral coat protein based on simple polypeptide domains. Our coat protein features precise control over the cooperativity of its self-assembly with single DNA molecules to finally form rod-shaped virus-like particles. We confirm the validity of our design principles by showing that the kinetics of self-assembly of our virus-like particles follows a previous model developed for tobacco mosaic virus. We show that our virus-like particles protect DNA against enzymatic degradation and transfect cells with considerable efficiency, making them promising delivery vehicles.

  14. Towards building artificial light harvesting complexes: enhanced singlet-singlet energy transfer between donor and acceptor pairs bound to albumins.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Challa V; Duff, Michael R

    2008-12-01

    -natural systems have been self-assembled which can capture donor-acceptor pairs and facilitate singlet-singlet energy transfer. Such systems may form a basis for the design and construction of protein-based multi-chromophore self-assemblies for solar light harvesting, conversion and storage.

  15. Quantum coherence controls the charge separation in a prototypical artificial light-harvesting system

    PubMed Central

    Andrea Rozzi, Carlo; Maria Falke, Sarah; Spallanzani, Nicola; Rubio, Angel; Molinari, Elisa; Brida, Daniele; Maiuri, Margherita; Cerullo, Giulio; Schramm, Heiko; Christoffers, Jens; Lienau, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    The efficient conversion of light into electricity or chemical fuels is a fundamental challenge. In artificial photosynthetic and photovoltaic devices, this conversion is generally thought to happen on ultrafast, femto-to-picosecond timescales and to involve an incoherent electron transfer process. In some biological systems, however, there is growing evidence that the coherent motion of electronic wavepackets is an essential primary step, raising questions about the role of quantum coherence in artificial devices. Here we investigate the primary charge-transfer process in a supramolecular triad, a prototypical artificial reaction centre. Combining high time-resolution femtosecond spectroscopy and time-dependent density functional theory, we provide compelling evidence that the driving mechanism of the photoinduced current generation cycle is a correlated wavelike motion of electrons and nuclei on a timescale of few tens of femtoseconds. We highlight the fundamental role of the interface between chromophore and charge acceptor in triggering the coherent wavelike electron-hole splitting. PMID:23511467

  16. Vibronic coupling explains the ultrafast carotenoid-to-bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in natural and artificial light harvesters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perlík, Václav; Seibt, Joachim; Cranston, Laura J.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Lincoln, Craig N.; Savolainen, Janne; Šanda, František; Mančal, Tomáš; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-06-01

    The initial energy transfer steps in photosynthesis occur on ultrafast timescales. We analyze the carotenoid to bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in LH2 Marichromatium purpuratum as well as in an artificial light-harvesting dyad system by using transient grating and two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with 10 fs time resolution. We find that Förster-type models reproduce the experimentally observed 60 fs transfer times, but overestimate coupling constants, which lead to a disagreement with both linear absorption and electronic 2D-spectra. We show that a vibronic model, which treats carotenoid vibrations on both electronic ground and excited states as part of the system's Hamiltonian, reproduces all measured quantities. Importantly, the vibronic model presented here can explain the fast energy transfer rates with only moderate coupling constants, which are in agreement with structure based calculations. Counterintuitively, the vibrational levels on the carotenoid electronic ground state play the central role in the excited state population transfer to bacteriochlorophyll; resonance between the donor-acceptor energy gap and the vibrational ground state energies is the physical basis of the ultrafast energy transfer rates in these systems.

  17. Vibronic coupling explains the ultrafast carotenoid-to-bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in natural and artificial light harvesters

    SciTech Connect

    Perlík, Václav; Seibt, Joachim; Šanda, František; Mančal, Tomáš; Cranston, Laura J.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Lincoln, Craig N.; Hauer, Jürgen; Savolainen, Janne

    2015-06-07

    The initial energy transfer steps in photosynthesis occur on ultrafast timescales. We analyze the carotenoid to bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in LH2 Marichromatium purpuratum as well as in an artificial light-harvesting dyad system by using transient grating and two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with 10 fs time resolution. We find that Förster-type models reproduce the experimentally observed 60 fs transfer times, but overestimate coupling constants, which lead to a disagreement with both linear absorption and electronic 2D-spectra. We show that a vibronic model, which treats carotenoid vibrations on both electronic ground and excited states as part of the system’s Hamiltonian, reproduces all measured quantities. Importantly, the vibronic model presented here can explain the fast energy transfer rates with only moderate coupling constants, which are in agreement with structure based calculations. Counterintuitively, the vibrational levels on the carotenoid electronic ground state play the central role in the excited state population transfer to bacteriochlorophyll; resonance between the donor-acceptor energy gap and the vibrational ground state energies is the physical basis of the ultrafast energy transfer rates in these systems.

  18. Vibronic coupling explains the ultrafast carotenoid-to-bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in natural and artificial light harvesters.

    PubMed

    Perlík, Václav; Seibt, Joachim; Cranston, Laura J; Cogdell, Richard J; Lincoln, Craig N; Savolainen, Janne; Šanda, František; Mančal, Tomáš; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-06-07

    The initial energy transfer steps in photosynthesis occur on ultrafast timescales. We analyze the carotenoid to bacteriochlorophyll energy transfer in LH2 Marichromatium purpuratum as well as in an artificial light-harvesting dyad system by using transient grating and two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with 10 fs time resolution. We find that Förster-type models reproduce the experimentally observed 60 fs transfer times, but overestimate coupling constants, which lead to a disagreement with both linear absorption and electronic 2D-spectra. We show that a vibronic model, which treats carotenoid vibrations on both electronic ground and excited states as part of the system's Hamiltonian, reproduces all measured quantities. Importantly, the vibronic model presented here can explain the fast energy transfer rates with only moderate coupling constants, which are in agreement with structure based calculations. Counterintuitively, the vibrational levels on the carotenoid electronic ground state play the central role in the excited state population transfer to bacteriochlorophyll; resonance between the donor-acceptor energy gap and the vibrational ground state energies is the physical basis of the ultrafast energy transfer rates in these systems.

  19. Triplet excitons in natural photosynthetic and artificial light harvesting systems: Measurement and modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartzler, Daniel Allen

    artificial (B)Chl and porphyrin dimers by experimental and computational methods. This data set obtained allowed for the development of an empirical model for prediction of the triplet state site energy from a given singlet site energy and for development and calibration of a T-T coupling model. Use of these models shows that triplet state lowering by pigment-protein interaction provides photoprotection to the FMO complex, while triplet state lowering by triplet exciton formation is insufficient to provide protection to the chlorosome antenna. Additionally, the T-T coupling model shows that in dimers and other aggregates, the coupling is highly sensitive to relative monomer orientation and position, contrary to what was previously assumed. The simple exponential models used to estimate T-T couplings miss this orientation sensitivity, thus in systems with significant contact between adjacent monomers a more accurate approach is required.

  20. Self-Assembled Local Artificial Substrates of GaAs on Si Substrate

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    We propose a self-assembling procedure for the fabrication of GaAs islands by Droplet Epitaxy on silicon substrate. Controlling substrate temperature and amount of supplied gallium is possible to tune the base size of the islands from 70 up to 250 nm and the density from 107 to 109 cm−2. The islands show a standard deviation of base size distribution below 10% and their shape evolves changing the aspect ratio from 0.3 to 0.5 as size increases. Due to their characteristics, these islands are suitable to be used as local artificial substrates for the integration of III–V quantum nanostructures directly on silicon substrate. PMID:21170400

  1. Selective internalization of self-assembled artificial oil bodies by HER2/neu-positive cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiang, Chung-Jen; Lin, Li-Jen; Lin, Che-Chin; Chang, Chih-Hsiang; Chao, Yun-Peng

    2011-01-01

    A novel delivery carrier was developed using artificial oil bodies (AOBs). Plant seed oil bodies (OBs) consist of a triacylglycerol matrix surrounded by a monolayer of phospholipids embedded with the storage protein oleosin (Ole). Ole consists of a central hydrophobic domain with two amphiphatic arms that extrude from the surface of OBs. In this study, a bivalent anti-HER2/neu affibody domain (ZH2) was fused with Ole at the C terminus. After overproduction in Escherichia coli, the fusion protein (Ole-ZH2) was recovered to assemble AOBs. The size of self-assembled AOBs was tailored by varying the oil/Ole-ZH2 ratio and pH to reach a nanoscale. Upon co-incubation with tumor cells, the nanoscale AOBs encapsulated with a hydrophobic fluorescence dye were selectively internalized by HER2/neu-overexpressing cells and displayed biocompatibility with the cells. In addition, the ZH2-mediated endosomal entry of AOBs occurred in a time- and AOB dose-dependent manner. The internalization efficiency was as high as 90%. The internalized AOBs disintegrated at the non-permissive pH (e.g. in acidic endosomes) and the cargo dye was released. Results of in vitro study revealed a sustained and prolonged release profile. Taken together, our findings indicate the potential of AOBs as a delivery carrier.

  2. Investigation of macrocyclic polymers as artificial light harvesters: subpicosecond energy transfer in poly(9,9-dimethyl-2-vinylfluorene).

    PubMed

    Johnson, Jerainne M; Chen, Rong; Chen, Xiyi; Moskun, Amy C; Zhang, Xi; Hogen-Esch, Thieo E; Bradforth, Stephen E

    2008-12-25

    The spectroscopy and dynamics of a novel molecular architecture that mimics natural light harvesting have been characterized. The deployment of 9,9-dimethyl-2-fluorenyl (DMF) chromophores in atactic macrocyclic poly(9,9-dimethyl-2-vinylfluorene) is similar to that in the light harvesting antenna LH2 of the purple photosynthetic bacteria. A variety of spectroscopic probes are used to study the dynamics in these novel polymer systems. The number of chromophores is tuned from 12-142 identical chromophore units. Steady-state absorption and emission measurements, time-resolved fluorescence, and ultrafast transient absorption anisotropy techniques provide evidence for distinct differences in the photophysics of matching molecular weight linear and cyclic polymers and of the occurrence of energy transfer in these polymers. There is direct evidence of energy transfer in these macrocycles manifested in the depolarization decay components, which are characterized by two exponentials and are substantially faster than observed for reorientation of the free DMF chromophore. The time constants for the macrocycles are 700-900 fs and 7-8 ps and are size dependent; the biexponential decay arises from conformational and stereochemical disorder and can be well described by a master equation simulation assuming Förster incoherent hopping on model polymer structures. The results suggest energy hopping between adjacent chromophores on a 1 ps time scale. The pathway for energy migration is shown to be primarily between nearest neighbors along the cyclic backbone, but there is a considerable spread in the site-to-site hopping rates. Small cycles adopt a pseudoplanar ring type arrangement of the chromophore transition dipoles as observed in bacterial light harvesting antenna, and it is found that the linear polymers also show similar short-range planarity of transition dipoles. Overall, it is found that such small macrocyclic polymers possess excellent characteristics for light harvesting

  3. Construction of Light-Harvesting Polymeric Vesicles in Aqueous Solution with Spatially Separated Donors and Acceptors.

    PubMed

    Li, Huimei; Liu, Yannan; Huang, Tong; Qi, Meiwei; Ni, Yunzhou; Wang, Jie; Zheng, Yongli; Zhou, Yongfeng; Yan, Deyue

    2017-02-24

    This communication describes polymer vesicles self-assembled from hyperbranched polymers (branched polymersomes (BPs)) as scaffolds, conceptually mimicking the natural light-harvesting system in aqueous solution. The system is constructed with hydrophobic 4-chloro-7-nitro-2,1,3-benzoxadiazole (NBD-Cl) as donors encapsulated in the hydrophobic hyperbranched cores of the vesicles and the hydrophilic Rhodamine B (RB) as acceptors incorporated on the surface of the vesicles through the cyclodextrin (CD)/RB host-guest interactions, through which the donors and acceptors are spatially separated to effectively avoid the self-quenching between donors. This vesicular light harvesting system has presented good energy transfer efficiency of about 80% in water, and can be used as the ink to write multiclolor letters. In addition, due to the giant dimension of BPs, the real-time fluorescent images of the vesicles under an optical microscope can be observed to prove the light-harvesting process. It is supposed that such a vesicular light-harvesting antenna can be used to construct artificial photosynthesis systems in the future.

  4. In vitro re-hardening of artificial enamel caries lesions using enamel matrix proteins or self-assembling peptides

    PubMed Central

    Schmidlin, Patrick; Zobrist, Katja; Attin, Thomas; Wegehaupt, Florian

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Objectives To assess the re-hardening potential of enamel matrix derivatives (EMD) and self-assembling peptides in vitro, hypothesizing that these materials may increase the mineralization of artificial carious lesions and improve hardness profiles. Material and Methods Forty-eight enamel samples were prepared from extracted bovine lower central incisors. After embedding and polishing, nail varnish was applied, leaving a defined test area. One third of this area was covered with a flowable composite (non-demineralized control). The remaining area was demineralized in an acidic buffer solution for 18 d to simulate a carious lesion. Half the demineralized area was then covered with composite (demineralized control), while the last third was left open for three test and one control treatments: (A) Application of enamel-matrix proteins (EMD - lyophilized protein fractions dissolved in acetic acid, Straumann), (B) self-assembling peptides (SAP, Curodont), or (C) amine fluoride solution (Am-F, GABA) for 5 min each. Untreated samples (D) served as control. After treatment, samples were immersed in artificial saliva for four weeks (remineralization phase) and microhardness (Knoop) depth profiles (25-300 µm) were obtained at sections. Two-way ANOVA was calculated to determine differences between the areas (re-hardening or softening). Results Decalcification resulted in significant softening of the subsurface enamel in all groups (A-D). A significant re-hardening up to 125 µm was observed in the EMD and SAP groups. Conclusions This study showed that EMD and SAP were able to improve the hardness profiles when applied to deep demineralized artificial lesions. However, further research is needed to verify and improve this observed effect. PMID:27008255

  5. Programmable self-assembly of metal ions inside artificial DNA duplexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanaka, Kentaro; Clever, Guido H.; Takezawa, Yusuke; Yamada, Yasuyuki; Kaul, Corinna; Shionoya, Mitsuhiko; Carell, Thomas

    2006-12-01

    The ultimate bottom-up approach for the construction of functional nanosystems requires the precise arrangement of atoms and molecules in three dimensions. DNA is currently one of the most prominent molecules able to self-assemble into complex networks and is therefore regarded as the `silicon of the nano-world'. Metals and metal ions, in contrast, are the atomic building-blocks needed in such materials to establish functions such as electrical conductivity or magnetism. Here we report a new concept, which efficiently combines metal ions and DNA. The DNA structure is used as a matrix to program robustly the complexation of different metal ions under precise control with regard to element, number and composition.

  6. Programmable self-assembly of metal ions inside artificial DNA duplexes.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Kentaro; Clever, Guido H; Takezawa, Yusuke; Yamada, Yasuyuki; Kaul, Corinna; Shionoya, Mitsuhiko; Carell, Thomas

    2006-12-01

    The ultimate bottom-up approach for the construction of functional nanosystems requires the precise arrangement of atoms and molecules in three dimensions. DNA is currently one of the most prominent molecules able to self-assemble into complex networks and is therefore regarded as the 'silicon of the nano-world'. Metals and metal ions, in contrast, are the atomic building-blocks needed in such materials to establish functions such as electrical conductivity or magnetism. Here we report a new concept, which efficiently combines metal ions and DNA. The DNA structure is used as a matrix to program robustly the complexation of different metal ions under precise control with regard to element, number and composition.

  7. Self-assembled gold nanocrystal micelles act as an excellent artificial nanozyme with ribonuclease activity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhiming; Fu, Qiuan; Li, Xiangqiu; Huang, Xin; Xu, Jiayun; Shen, Jiacong; Liu, Junqiu

    2009-06-01

    Water-soluble Au nanocrystal (NC) micelles with an inserted catalytic Cu(II) center that act as excellent nanoenzyme models for imitating ribonuclease were constructed by supramolecular self-assembly. The dodecane-1-thiol-based Au NC was constructed first, and subsequently the cationic surfactant hexadecyltrimethylammonium bromide and the catalytic ligand (N1,N1-bis(2-aminoethyl)-N2-dodecylethane-1,2-diamine) copper(II) were installed on the surface of the Au NC via hydrophobic interaction. The catalytic capability of the Au NC micelles designed was estimated by the cleavage of a typical RNA analogue, 2-hydroxypropyl p-nitrophenyl phosphate (HPNP). The study of the catalytic behavior of Au NC micelle catalysis showed that the Au NC micelles exhibited dramatic ribonuclease-like activity: a high rate acceleration of k(cat)/k(uncat) = 1.10 x 10(5) for the cleavage of HPNP in comparison with the spontaneous cleavage of HPNP (k(uncat)) was observed. The catalytic capability for HPNP cleavage by these functionalized Au NC micelles can be compared with that of covalent Au nanoparticles reported previously as nanozymes under comparable conditions. A detailed investigation of enzymatic kinetics was carried out and a possible mechanism was suggested.

  8. Squalyl Crown Ether Self-Assembled Conjugates: An Example of Highly Selective Artificial K(+) Channels.

    PubMed

    Sun, Zhanhu; Gilles, Arnaud; Kocsis, Istvan; Legrand, Yves-Marie; Petit, Eddy; Barboiu, Mihail

    2016-02-01

    The natural KcsA K(+) channel, one of the best-characterized biological pore structures, conducts K(+) cations at high rates while excluding Na(+) cations. The KcsA K(+) channel is of primordial inspiration for the design of artificial channels. Important progress in improving conduction activity and K(+) /Na(+) selectivity has been achieved with artificial ion-channel systems. However, simple artificial systems exhibiting K(+) /Na(+) selectivity and mimicking the biofunctions of the KcsA K(+) channel are unknown. Herein, an artificial ion channel formed by H-bonded stacks of squalyl crown ethers, in which K(+) conduction is highly preferred to Na(+) conduction, is reported. The K(+) -channel behavior is interpreted as arising from discreet stacks of dimers resulting in the formation of oligomeric channels, in which transport of cations occurs through macrocycles mixed with dimeric carriers undergoing dynamic exchange within the bilayer membrane. The present highly K(+) -selective macrocyclic channel can be regarded as a biomimetic alternative to the KcsA channel.

  9. Self-assembled chromophores within mesoporous nanocrystalline TiO2: towards biomimetic solar cells.

    PubMed

    Marek, Peter L; Sieger, Hermann; Scherer, Torsten; Hahn, Horst; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2009-06-01

    Artificial light-harvesting antennas consisting of self-assembled chromophores that mimic the natural pigments of photosynthetic bacteria have been inserted into voids induced in porous titania (TiO2, anatase) in order to investigate their suitability for hybrid solar cells. Mesoporous nanocrystalline TiO2 with additional uniform macropores was treated with precursor solutions of the pigment which was then induced to self-assemble within the voids. The chromophores were tailored to combine the self-assembly characteristics of the natural bacteriochlorophylls with the robustness of artificial Zn-porphyrins being stable for prolonged periods even upon heating to over 200 degrees C. They assemble on the TiO2 surface to form nano- to micro-crystalline structures with lengths from tens of nm up to several microm and show a photosensitization effect which is supposed to be dependent on the assembly size. The natural examples of these antennas are found in green sulfur bacteria which are able to use photosynthesis in deep water regions with minute light intensities. The implementation of biomimetic antennas for light harvesting and a better photon management may lead to a rise in efficiency of dye-sensitized solar cells also under low light illumination conditions.

  10. Light harvesting dendrimers.

    PubMed

    Nantalaksakul, Arpornrat; Reddy, D Raghunath; Bardeen, Christopher J; Thayumanavan, S

    2006-01-01

    Tree-like dendrimers with decreasing number of chromophores from periphery to core is an attractive candidate for light-harvesting applications. Numerous dendritic designs with different kinds of light-collecting chromophores at periphery and an energy-sink at the core have been demonstrated with high energy transfer efficiency. These building blocks are now being developed for several applications such as light-emitting diodes, frequency converters and other photonic devices. This review outlines the efforts that are based on both conjugated and non-conjugated dendrimers.

  11. Towards Self-Assembled Hybrid Artificial Cells: Novel Bottom-Up Approaches to Functional Synthetic Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Brea, Roberto J.; Hardy, Michael D.; Devaraj, Neal K.

    2015-01-01

    There has been increasing interest in utilizing bottom-up approaches to develop synthetic cells. A popular methodology is the integration of functionalized synthetic membranes with biological systems, producing “hybrid” artificial cells. This Concept article covers recent advances and the current state-of-the-art of such hybrid systems. Specifically, we describe minimal supramolecular constructs that faithfully mimic the structure and/or function of living cells, often by controlling the assembly of highly ordered membrane architectures with defined functionality. These studies give us a deeper understanding of the nature of living systems, bring new insights into the origin of cellular life, and provide novel synthetic chassis for advancing synthetic biology. PMID:26149747

  12. Quantum Chemical Studies of Light Harvesting.

    PubMed

    Curutchet, Carles; Mennucci, Benedetta

    2017-01-25

    The design of optimal light-harvesting (supra)molecular systems and materials is one of the most challenging frontiers of science. Theoretical methods and computational models play a fundamental role in this difficult task, as they allow the establishment of structural blueprints inspired by natural photosynthetic organisms that can be applied to the design of novel artificial light-harvesting devices. Among theoretical strategies, the application of quantum chemical tools represents an important reality that has already reached an evident degree of maturity, although it still has to show its real potentials. This Review presents an overview of the state of the art of this strategy, showing the actual fields of applicability but also indicating its current limitations, which need to be solved in future developments.

  13. Tetraphenylethene-based star shaped porphyrins: synthesis, self-assembly, and optical and photophysical study.

    PubMed

    Rananaware, Anushri; Bhosale, Rajesh S; Ohkubo, Kei; Patil, Hemlata; Jones, Lathe A; Jackson, Sam L; Fukuzumi, Shunichi; Bhosale, Sidhanath V; Bhosale, Sheshanath V

    2015-04-17

    Supramolecular self-assembly and self-organization are simple and convenient ways to design and create controlled assemblies with organic molecules, and they have provoked great interest due to their potential applications in various fields, such as electronics, photonics, and light-energy conversion. Herein, we describe the synthesis of two π-conjugated porphyrin molecules bearing tetraphenylethene moieties with high fluorescence quantum yield. Photophysical and electrochemical studies were conducted to understand the physical and redox properties of these new materials, respectively. Furthermore, these derivatives were used to investigate self-assembly via the solvophobic effect. The self-assembled aggregation was performed in nonpolar and polar organic solvents and forms nanospheres and ring-like nanostructures, respectively. The solution based aggregation was studied by means of UV-vis absorption, emission, XRD, and DLS analyses. Self-assembled ring-shape structures were visualized by SEM and TEM imaging. This ring-shape morphology of nanosized macromolecules might be a good candidate for the creation of artificial light-harvesting nanodevices.

  14. Towards a comprehensive insight into efficient hydrogen production by self-assembled Ru(bpy)3(2+)-polymer-Pt artificial photosystems.

    PubMed

    Lin, Huan; Liu, Dan; Long, Jinlin; Zhang, Zizhong; Zhuang, Huaqiang; Zheng, Yi; Wang, Xuxu

    2015-04-28

    The role of polymers in artificial photosystems has been studied in detail. The photosystems were composed of tris(2,2'-bipyridyl) ruthenium(II) chloride as a photosensitizer (PS), colloidal Pt stabilized by polymer as a hydrogen-evolving catalyst and sodium ascorbate as an electron donor, without the addition of a traditional molecular electron mediator. Comprehensive insights into the production of hydrogen on irradiation with visible light were achieved. Several polymers, including neutral polyvinyl pyrrolidone, anionic poly(sodium 4-styrene sulfonate) and poly(acrylic acid) not only stabilized the nanoparticles, but were also effective in the production of hydrogen. Under the optimum conditions, an outstanding apparent quantum efficiency of 12.8% for the evolution of hydrogen was achieved. The formation of self-assembled and spatially separated donor-acceptor complexes via the non-covalent intermolecular interaction between PS and the polymer-Pt was pivotal in the efficient conversion of solar energy to hydrogen fuel. Important details of the photo-induced electron and energy transfer processes in the self-assembled artificial photosystems were determined by nanosecond transient absorption spectrometry and time-resolved fluorescence spectrometry. The initial step in the photo-catalytic production of hydrogen was a reductive quenching of the triplet excited state of the PS by sodium ascorbate, leading to a reduced form of PS, which could then be quickly quenched by the polymer. The rate-determining step was the electron transfer from PS to the catalyst via the polymer bridge.

  15. Self-assembled lipid bilayer materials

    DOEpatents

    Sasaki, Darryl Y.; Waggoner, Tina A.; Last, Julie A.

    2005-11-08

    The present invention is a self-assembling material comprised of stacks of lipid bilayers formed in a columnar structure, where the assembly process is mediated and regulated by chemical recognition events. The material, through the chemical recognition interactions, has a self-regulating system that corrects the radial size of the assembly creating a uniform diameter throughout most of the structure. The materials form and are stable in aqueous solution. These materials are useful as structural elements for the architecture of materials and components in nanotechnology, efficient light harvesting systems for optical sensing, chemical processing centers, and drug delivery vehicles.

  16. A switchable self-assembling and disassembling chiral system based on a porphyrin-substituted phenylalanine-phenylalanine motif

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charalambidis, Georgios; Georgilis, Evangelos; Panda, Manas K.; Anson, Christopher E.; Powell, Annie K.; Doyle, Stephen; Moss, David; Jochum, Tobias; Horton, Peter N.; Coles, Simon J.; Linares, Mathieu; Beljonne, David; Naubron, Jean-Valère; Conradt, Jonas; Kalt, Heinz; Mitraki, Anna; Coutsolelos, Athanassios G.; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2016-09-01

    Artificial light-harvesting systems have until now not been able to self-assemble into structures with a large photon capture cross-section that upon a stimulus reversibly can switch into an inactive state. Here we describe a simple and robust FLFL-dipeptide construct to which a meso-tetraphenylporphyrin has been appended and which self-assembles to fibrils, platelets or nanospheres depending on the solvent composition. The fibrils, functioning as quenched antennas, give intense excitonic couplets in the electronic circular dichroism spectra which are mirror imaged if the unnatural FDFD-analogue is used. By slightly increasing the solvent polarity, these light-harvesting fibres disassemble to spherical structures with silent electronic circular dichroism spectra but which fluoresce. Upon further dilution with the nonpolar solvent, the intense Cotton effects are recovered, thus proving a reversible switching. A single crystal X-ray structure shows a head-to-head arrangement of porphyrins that explains both their excitonic coupling and quenched fluorescence.

  17. A switchable self-assembling and disassembling chiral system based on a porphyrin-substituted phenylalanine–phenylalanine motif

    PubMed Central

    Charalambidis, Georgios; Georgilis, Evangelos; Panda, Manas K.; Anson, Christopher E.; Powell, Annie K.; Doyle, Stephen; Moss, David; Jochum, Tobias; Horton, Peter N.; Coles, Simon J.; Linares, Mathieu; Beljonne, David; Naubron, Jean-Valère; Conradt, Jonas; Kalt, Heinz; Mitraki, Anna; Coutsolelos, Athanassios G.; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2016-01-01

    Artificial light-harvesting systems have until now not been able to self-assemble into structures with a large photon capture cross-section that upon a stimulus reversibly can switch into an inactive state. Here we describe a simple and robust FLFL-dipeptide construct to which a meso-tetraphenylporphyrin has been appended and which self-assembles to fibrils, platelets or nanospheres depending on the solvent composition. The fibrils, functioning as quenched antennas, give intense excitonic couplets in the electronic circular dichroism spectra which are mirror imaged if the unnatural FDFD-analogue is used. By slightly increasing the solvent polarity, these light-harvesting fibres disassemble to spherical structures with silent electronic circular dichroism spectra but which fluoresce. Upon further dilution with the nonpolar solvent, the intense Cotton effects are recovered, thus proving a reversible switching. A single crystal X-ray structure shows a head-to-head arrangement of porphyrins that explains both their excitonic coupling and quenched fluorescence. PMID:27582363

  18. Biohybrid photosynthetic antenna complexes for enhanced light-harvesting.

    PubMed

    Springer, Joseph W; Parkes-Loach, Pamela S; Reddy, Kanumuri Ramesh; Krayer, Michael; Jiao, Jieying; Lee, Gregory M; Niedzwiedzki, Dariusz M; Harris, Michelle A; Kirmaier, Christine; Bocian, David F; Lindsey, Jonathan S; Holten, Dewey; Loach, Paul A

    2012-03-14

    Biohybrid antenna systems have been constructed that contain synthetic chromophores attached to 31mer analogues of the bacterial photosynthetic core light-harvesting (LH1) β-polypeptide. The peptides are engineered with a Cys site for bioconjugation with maleimide-terminated chromophores, which include synthetic bacteriochlorins (BC1, BC2) with strong near-infrared absorption and commercial dyes Oregon green (OGR) and rhodamine red (RR) with strong absorption in the blue-green to yellow-orange regions. The peptides place the Cys 14 (or 6) residues before a native His site that binds bacteriochlorophyll a (BChl-a) and, like the native LH proteins, have high helical content as probed by single-reflection IR spectroscopy. The His residue associates with BChl-a as in the native LH1 β-polypeptide to form dimeric ββ-subunit complexes [31mer(-14Cys)X/BChl](2), where X is one of the synthetic chromophores. The native-like BChl-a dimer has Q(y) absorption at 820 nm and serves as the acceptor for energy from light absorbed by the appended synthetic chromophore. The energy-transfer characteristics of biohybrid complexes have been characterized by steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence and absorption measurements. The quantum yields of energy transfer from a synthetic chromophore located 14 residues from the BChl-coordinating His site are as follows: OGR (0.30) < RR (0.60) < BC2 (0.90). Oligomeric assemblies of the subunit complexes [31mer(-14Cys)X/BChl](n) are accompanied by a bathochromic shift of the Q(y) absorption of the BChl-a oligomer as far as the 850-nm position found in cyclic native photosynthetic LH2 complexes. Room-temperature stabilized oligomeric biohybrids have energy-transfer quantum yields comparable to those of the dimeric subunit complexes as follows: OGR (0.20) < RR (0.80) < BC1 (0.90). Thus, the new biohybrid antennas retain the energy-transfer and self-assembly characteristics of the native antenna complexes, offer enhanced coverage of the solar

  19. Strong Coupling of Localized Surface Plasmons to Excitons in Light-Harvesting Complexes

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Gold nanostructure arrays exhibit surface plasmon resonances that split after attaching light harvesting complexes 1 and 2 (LH1 and LH2) from purple bacteria. The splitting is attributed to strong coupling between the localized surface plasmon resonances and excitons in the light-harvesting complexes. Wild-type and mutant LH1 and LH2 from Rhodobacter sphaeroides containing different carotenoids yield different splitting energies, demonstrating that the coupling mechanism is sensitive to the electronic states in the light harvesting complexes. Plasmon–exciton coupling models reveal different coupling strengths depending on the molecular organization and the protein coverage, consistent with strong coupling. Strong coupling was also observed for self-assembling polypeptide maquettes that contain only chlorins. However, it is not observed for monolayers of bacteriochlorophyll, indicating that strong plasmon–exciton coupling is sensitive to the specific presentation of the pigment molecules. PMID:27689237

  20. OligArch: A software tool to allow artificially expanded genetic information systems (AEGIS) to guide the autonomous self-assembly of long DNA constructs from multiple DNA single strands

    PubMed Central

    Bradley, Kevin M

    2014-01-01

    Summary Synthetic biologists wishing to self-assemble large DNA (L-DNA) constructs from small DNA fragments made by automated synthesis need fragments that hybridize predictably. Such predictability is difficult to obtain with nucleotides built from just the four standard nucleotides. Natural DNA's peculiar combination of strong and weak G:C and A:T pairs, the context-dependence of the strengths of those pairs, unimolecular strand folding that competes with desired interstrand hybridization, and non-Watson–Crick interactions available to standard DNA, all contribute to this unpredictability. In principle, adding extra nucleotides to the genetic alphabet can improve the predictability and reliability of autonomous DNA self-assembly, simply by increasing the information density of oligonucleotide sequences. These extra nucleotides are now available as parts of artificially expanded genetic information systems (AEGIS), and tools are now available to generate entirely standard DNA from AEGIS DNA during PCR amplification. Here, we describe the OligArch (for "oligonucleotide architecting") software, an application that permits synthetic biologists to engineer optimally self-assembling DNA constructs from both six- and eight-letter AEGIS alphabets. This software has been used to design oligonucleotides that self-assemble to form complete genes from 20 or more single-stranded synthetic oligonucleotides. OligArch is therefore a key element of a scalable and integrated infrastructure for the rapid and designed engineering of biology. PMID:25161743

  1. Light-harvesting superstructures of green plant chloroplasts lacking photosystems.

    PubMed

    Belgio, Erica; Ungerer, Petra; Ruban, Alexander V

    2015-10-01

    The light-harvesting antenna of higher plant photosystem II (LHCII) is the major photosynthetic membrane component encoded by an entire family of homologous nuclear genes. On the contrary, the great majority of proteins of photosystems and electron transport components are encoded by the chloroplast genome. In this work, we succeeded in gradually inhibiting the expression of the chloroplast genes that led to the disappearance of the photosystem complexes, mimicking almost total photoinhibition. The treated plants, despite displaying only some early signs of senescence, sustained their metabolism and growth for several weeks. The only major remaining membrane component was LHCII antenna that formed superstructures - stacks of dozens of thylakoids or supergrana. Freeze-fracture electron microscopy revealed specific organization, directly displaying frequently bifurcated membranes with reduced or totally absent photosystem II (PSII) reaction centre complexes. Our findings show that it is possible to accumulate large amounts of light-harvesting membranes, organized into three-dimensional structures, in the absence of reaction centre complexes. This points to the reciprocal role of LHCII and PSII in self-assembly of the three-dimensional matrix of the photosynthetic membrane, dictating its size and flexible adaptation to the light environment.

  2. Self-assembled Tunable Photonic Hyper-crystals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-07-16

    1ITLE AND SUBTITLE 5a CONTRACTNUMBER Self - assembled tunable photonic hyper-crystals W911NF-09-l-0539 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER...ABSTRACT Self - assembled tunable photonic hyper-crystals Report Title We demonstrate a novel artificial optical material, the “photonic hyper-crystal...photonic Brillouin zones. Three dimensional self - assembly of photonic hyper-crystals has been achieved by application of external magnetic field to

  3. Self-assembling RNA square

    SciTech Connect

    Dibrov, Sergey M.; McLean, Jaime; Parsons, Jerod; Hermann, Thomas

    2011-12-22

    The three-dimensional structures of noncoding RNA molecules reveal recurring architectural motifs that have been exploited for the design of artificial RNA nanomaterials. Programmed assembly of RNA nanoobjects from autonomously folding tetraloop-receptor complexes as well as junction motifs has been achieved previously through sequence-directed hybridization of complex sets of long oligonucleotides. Due to size and complexity, structural characterization of artificial RNA nanoobjects has been limited to low-resolution microscopy studies. Here we present the design, construction, and crystal structure determination at 2.2 {angstrom} of the smallest yet square-shaped nanoobject made entirely of double-stranded RNA. The RNA square is comprised of 100 residues and self-assembles from four copies each of two oligonucleotides of 10 and 15 bases length. Despite the high symmetry on the level of secondary structure, the three-dimensional architecture of the square is asymmetric, with all four corners adopting distinct folding patterns. We demonstrate the programmed self-assembly of RNA squares from complex mixtures of corner units and establish a concept to exploit the RNA square as a combinatorial nanoscale platform.

  4. Optimal Energy Transfer in Light-Harvesting Systems.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lipeng; Shenai, Prathamesh; Zheng, Fulu; Somoza, Alejandro; Zhao, Yang

    2015-08-20

    Photosynthesis is one of the most essential biological processes in which specialized pigment-protein complexes absorb solar photons, and with a remarkably high efficiency, guide the photo-induced excitation energy toward the reaction center to subsequently trigger its conversion to chemical energy. In this work, we review the principles of optimal energy transfer in various natural and artificial light harvesting systems. We begin by presenting the guiding principles for optimizing the energy transfer efficiency in systems connected to dissipative environments, with particular attention paid to the potential role of quantum coherence in light harvesting systems. We will comment briefly on photo-protective mechanisms in natural systems that ensure optimal functionality under varying ambient conditions. For completeness, we will also present an overview of the charge separation and electron transfer pathways in reaction centers. Finally, recent theoretical and experimental progress on excitation energy transfer, charge separation, and charge transport in artificial light harvesting systems is delineated, with organic solar cells taken as prime examples.

  5. Self assembling proteins

    DOEpatents

    Yeates, Todd O.; Padilla, Jennifer; Colovos, Chris

    2004-06-29

    Novel fusion proteins capable of self-assembling into regular structures, as well as nucleic acids encoding the same, are provided. The subject fusion proteins comprise at least two oligomerization domains rigidly linked together, e.g. through an alpha helical linking group. Also provided are regular structures comprising a plurality of self-assembled fusion proteins of the subject invention, and methods for producing the same. The subject fusion proteins find use in the preparation of a variety of nanostructures, where such structures include: cages, shells, double-layer rings, two-dimensional layers, three-dimensional crystals, filaments, and tubes.

  6. Photovoltaic self-assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Lavin, Judith; Kemp, Richard Alan; Stewart, Constantine A.

    2010-10-01

    This late-start LDRD was focused on the application of chemical principles of self-assembly on the ordering and placement of photovoltaic cells in a module. The drive for this chemical-based self-assembly stems from the escalating prices in the 'pick-and-place' technology currently used in the MEMS industries as the size of chips decreases. The chemical self-assembly principles are well-known on a molecular scale in other material science systems but to date had not been applied to the assembly of cells in a photovoltaic array or module. We explored several types of chemical-based self-assembly techniques, including gold-thiol interactions, liquid polymer binding, and hydrophobic-hydrophilic interactions designed to array both Si and GaAs PV chips onto a substrate. Additional research was focused on the modification of PV cells in an effort to gain control over the facial directionality of the cells in a solvent-based environment. Despite being a small footprint research project worked on for only a short time, the technical results and scientific accomplishments were significant and could prove to be enabling technology in the disruptive advancement of the microelectronic photovoltaics industry.

  7. Modeling Protein Self Assembly

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, William P.; Jones, Carleton Buck; Hull, Elizabeth

    2004-01-01

    Understanding the structure and function of proteins is an important part of the standards-based science curriculum. Proteins serve vital roles within the cell and malfunctions in protein self assembly are implicated in degenerative diseases. Experience indicates that this topic is a difficult one for many students. We have found that the concept…

  8. Self-assembly of fluorescent carbon dots in a N,N-dimethylmethanamide solution via Schiff base reaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Shengliang; Ding, Yanli; Chang, Qing; Trinchi, Adrian; Lin, Kui; Yang, Jinlong; Liu, Jun

    2015-02-01

    The transition from nanoparticles suspended in aqueous solutions into solid fluorescent structures is developed for application in solid functional devices. The presented approach enables the organization of carbon dots into rod-like shapes that can still be re-dispersed into aqueous solution. Schiff bases forming at the surface of carbon dots not only protect their surface states, but also provide sites for tethering to other carbon dots. As a consequence, the large assemblies of CDs can come together to form regular, well ordered structures whilst still maintaining their photoluminescence properties. This opens up enormous possibilities for device manufacture, as these self-assemblies could be grown or grafted onto templates forming regular structures, and find innumerable applications ranging from optoelectronic devices, light harvesting to artificial photosynthesis.The transition from nanoparticles suspended in aqueous solutions into solid fluorescent structures is developed for application in solid functional devices. The presented approach enables the organization of carbon dots into rod-like shapes that can still be re-dispersed into aqueous solution. Schiff bases forming at the surface of carbon dots not only protect their surface states, but also provide sites for tethering to other carbon dots. As a consequence, the large assemblies of CDs can come together to form regular, well ordered structures whilst still maintaining their photoluminescence properties. This opens up enormous possibilities for device manufacture, as these self-assemblies could be grown or grafted onto templates forming regular structures, and find innumerable applications ranging from optoelectronic devices, light harvesting to artificial photosynthesis. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Experimental details and more characterization of carbon dot assemblies. See DOI: 10.1039/c4nr07119k

  9. Self-assembled gelators for organic electronics.

    PubMed

    Babu, Sukumaran Santhosh; Prasanthkumar, Seelam; Ajayaghosh, Ayyappanpillai

    2012-02-20

    Nature excels at engineering materials by using the principles of chemical synthesis and molecular self-assembly with the help of noncovalent forces. Learning from these phenomena, scientists have been able to create a variety of self-assembled artificial materials of different size, shapes, and properties for wide ranging applications. An area of great interest in this regard is solvent-assisted gel formation with functional organic molecules, thus leading to one-dimensional fibers. Such fibers have improved electronic properties and are potential soft materials for organic electronic devices, particularly in bulk heterojunction solar cells. Described herein is how molecular self-assembly, which was originally proposed as a simple laboratory curiosity, has helped the evolution of a variety of soft functional materials useful for advanced electronic devices such as organic field-effect transistors and organic solar cells. Highlights on some of the recent developments are discussed.

  10. Self-assembly concepts for multicompartment nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Gröschel, André H; Müller, Axel H E

    2015-07-28

    Compartmentalization is ubiquitous to many biological and artificial systems, be it for the separate storage of incompatible matter or to isolate transport processes. Advancements in the synthesis of sequential block copolymers offer a variety of tools to replicate natural design principles with tailor-made soft matter for the precise spatial separation of functionalities on multiple length scales. Here, we review recent trends in the self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers to multicompartment nanostructures (MCNs) under (semi-)dilute conditions, with special emphasis on ABC triblock terpolymers. The intrinsic immiscibility of connected blocks induces short-range repulsion into discrete nano-domains stabilized by a third, soluble block or molecular additive. Polymer blocks can be synthesized from an arsenal of functional monomers directing self-assembly through packing frustration or response to various fields. The mobility in solution further allows the manipulation of self-assembly processes into specific directions by clever choice of environmental conditions. This review focuses on practical concepts that direct self-assembly into predictable nanostructures, while narrowing particle dispersity with respect to size, shape and internal morphology. The growing understanding of underlying self-assembly mechanisms expands the number of experimental concepts providing the means to target and manipulate progressively complex superstructures.

  11. Self-assembly concepts for multicompartment nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gröschel, André H.; Müller, Axel H. E.

    2015-07-01

    Compartmentalization is ubiquitous to many biological and artificial systems, be it for the separate storage of incompatible matter or to isolate transport processes. Advancements in the synthesis of sequential block copolymers offer a variety of tools to replicate natural design principles with tailor-made soft matter for the precise spatial separation of functionalities on multiple length scales. Here, we review recent trends in the self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers to multicompartment nanostructures (MCNs) under (semi-)dilute conditions, with special emphasis on ABC triblock terpolymers. The intrinsic immiscibility of connected blocks induces short-range repulsion into discrete nano-domains stabilized by a third, soluble block or molecular additive. Polymer blocks can be synthesized from an arsenal of functional monomers directing self-assembly through packing frustration or response to various fields. The mobility in solution further allows the manipulation of self-assembly processes into specific directions by clever choice of environmental conditions. This review focuses on practical concepts that direct self-assembly into predictable nanostructures, while narrowing particle dispersity with respect to size, shape and internal morphology. The growing understanding of underlying self-assembly mechanisms expands the number of experimental concepts providing the means to target and manipulate progressively complex superstructures.

  12. PS2013 Satellite Workshop on Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Niederman, Robert A.; Blankenship, Robert E.; Frank, Harry A.

    2015-02-07

    These funds were used for partial support of the PS2013 Satellite Workshop on Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Systems, that was held on 8-11 August, 2013, at Washington University, St. Louis, MO. This conference, held in conjunction with the 16th International Congress on Photosynthesis/St. Louis, continued a long tradition of light-harvesting satellite conferences that have been held prior to the previous six international photosynthesis congresses. In this Workshop, the basis was explored for the current interest in replacing fossil fuels with energy sources derived form direct solar radiation, coupled with light-driven electron transport in natural photosynthetic systems and how they offer a valuable blueprint for conversion of sunlight to useful energy forms. This was accomplished through sessions on the initial light-harvesting events in the biological conversion of solar energy to chemically stored energy forms, and how these natural photosynthetic processes serve as a guide to the development of robust bio-hybrid and artificial systems for solar energy conversion into both electricity or chemical fuels. Organized similar to a Gordon Research Conference, a lively, informal and collegial setting was established, highlighting the exchange of exciting new data and unpublished results from ongoing studies. A significant amount of time was set aside for open discussion and interactive poster sessions, with a special session devoted to oral presentations by talented students and postdoctoral fellows judged to have the best posters. This area of research has seen exceptionally rapid progress in recent years, with the availability of a number of antenna protein structures at atomic resolution, elucidation of the molecular surface architecture of native photosynthetic membranes by atomic force microscopy and the maturing of ultrafast spectroscopic and molecular biological techniques for the investigation and manipulation of photosynthetic systems. The conferees

  13. Programming Light-Harvesting Efficiency Using DNA Origami

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The remarkable performance and quantum efficiency of biological light-harvesting complexes has prompted a multidisciplinary interest in engineering biologically inspired antenna systems as a possible route to novel solar cell technologies. Key to the effectiveness of biological “nanomachines” in light capture and energy transport is their highly ordered nanoscale architecture of photoactive molecules. Recently, DNA origami has emerged as a powerful tool for organizing multiple chromophores with base-pair accuracy and full geometric freedom. Here, we present a programmable antenna array on a DNA origami platform that enables the implementation of rationally designed antenna structures. We systematically analyze the light-harvesting efficiency with respect to number of donors and interdye distances of a ring-like antenna using ensemble and single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and detailed Förster modeling. This comprehensive study demonstrates exquisite and reliable structural control over multichromophoric geometries and points to DNA origami as highly versatile platform for testing design concepts in artificial light-harvesting networks. PMID:26906456

  14. Programming Light-Harvesting Efficiency Using DNA Origami.

    PubMed

    Hemmig, Elisa A; Creatore, Celestino; Wünsch, Bettina; Hecker, Lisa; Mair, Philip; Parker, M Andy; Emmott, Stephen; Tinnefeld, Philip; Keyser, Ulrich F; Chin, Alex W

    2016-04-13

    The remarkable performance and quantum efficiency of biological light-harvesting complexes has prompted a multidisciplinary interest in engineering biologically inspired antenna systems as a possible route to novel solar cell technologies. Key to the effectiveness of biological "nanomachines" in light capture and energy transport is their highly ordered nanoscale architecture of photoactive molecules. Recently, DNA origami has emerged as a powerful tool for organizing multiple chromophores with base-pair accuracy and full geometric freedom. Here, we present a programmable antenna array on a DNA origami platform that enables the implementation of rationally designed antenna structures. We systematically analyze the light-harvesting efficiency with respect to number of donors and interdye distances of a ring-like antenna using ensemble and single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and detailed Förster modeling. This comprehensive study demonstrates exquisite and reliable structural control over multichromophoric geometries and points to DNA origami as highly versatile platform for testing design concepts in artificial light-harvesting networks.

  15. Quantum coherence, decoherence and entanglement in light harvesting complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plenio, Martin; Caruso, Filippo; Chin, Alex; Datta, Animesh; Huelga, Susana

    2009-03-01

    Transport phenomena in networks allow for information and energy to be exchanged between individual constituents of communication systems, networks or light-harvesting complexes. Environmental noise is generally expected to hinder transport. Here we show that transport of excitations across dissipative quantum networks can be enhanced by dephasing noise. We identify two key processes that underly this phenomenon and provide instructive examples of quantum networks for each. We argue that Nature may be routinely exploiting this effect by showing that exciton transport in light harvesting complexes and other networks benefits from noise and is remarkably robust against static disorder. These results point towards the possibility for designing optimized structures for transport, for example in artificial nano-structures, assisted by noise. Furthermore, we demonstrate that quantum entanglement may be present for short times in light-harvesting complexes. We describe how the presence of such entanglement may be verified without the need for full state tomography and with minimal model assumptions. This work is based on M.B. Plenio & S.F. Huelga, New J. Phys. 10, 113019 (2008) and F. Caruso, A. Chin, A. Datta, S.F. Huelga & M.B. Plenio, in preparation

  16. Energy, charge, and spin transport in molecules and self-assembled nanostructures inspired by photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Wasielewski, Michael R

    2006-07-07

    Electron transfer in biological molecules provides both insight and inspiration for developing chemical systems having similar functionality. Photosynthesis is an example of an integrated system in which light harvesting, photoinduced charge separation, and catalysis combine to carry out two thermodynamically demanding processes, the oxidation of water and the reduction of carbon dioxide. The development of artificial photosynthetic systems for solar energy conversion requires a fundamental understanding of electron-transfer reactions between organic molecules. Since these reactions most often involve single-electron transfers, the spin dynamics of photogenerated radical ion pairs provide important information on how the rates and efficiencies of these reactions depend on molecular structure. Given this knowledge, the design and synthesis of large integrated structures to carry out artificial photosynthesis is moving forward. An important approach to achieving this goal is the development of small, functional building blocks, having a minimum number of covalent bonds, which also have the appropriate molecular recognition sites to facilitate self-assembly into a complete, functional artificial photosynthetic system.

  17. Solar cells incorporating light harvesting arrays

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Meyer, Gerald J.

    2003-07-22

    A solar cell incorporates a light harvesting array that comprises: (a) a first substrate comprising a first electrode; and (b) a layer of light harvesting rods electrically coupled to the first electrode, each of the light harvesting rods comprising a polymer of Formula I: ##EQU1## wherein m is at least 1, and may be from two, three or four to 20 or more; X.sup.1 is a charge separation group (and preferably a porphyrinic macrocycle, which may be one ligand of a double-decker sandwich compound) having an excited-state of energy equal to or lower than that of X.sup.2 ; and X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 are chromophores (and again are preferably porphyrinic macrocycles).

  18. Solar cells incorporating light harvesting arrays

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Meyer, Gerald J.

    2002-01-01

    A solar cell incorporates a light harvesting array that comprises: (a) a first substrate comprising a first electrode; and (b) a layer of light harvesting rods electrically coupled to the first electrode, each of the light harvesting rods comprising a polymer of Formula I: X.sup.1.paren open-st.X.sup.m+1).sub.m (I) wherein m is at least 1, and may be from two, three or four to 20 or more; X.sup.1 is a charge separation group (and preferably a porphyrinic macrocycle, which may be one ligand of a double-decker sandwich compound) having an excited-state of energy equal to or lower than that of X.sup.2 ; and X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 are chromophores (and again are preferably porphyrinic macrocycles).

  19. TOPICAL REVIEW: Hybrid nanostructures for efficient light harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackowski, Sebastian

    2010-05-01

    Hybrid nanostructures are systems composed of two or more nanostructures designed for improving the performance over individual components. In this work we introduce the concept of bridging natural photosynthetic protein-pigment complexes with nanostructures fabricated in an artificial way, such as semiconductor nanocrystals, metallic nanoparticles or carbon nanotubes, with the purpose of enhancing the efficiency of light harvesting either via plasmon excitation in metals or absorption tunability characteristics of semiconductors. In addition to presenting basic features of inorganic nanostructures, we discuss recent advances in the field of hybrid nanostructures composed of photosynthetic pigment-protein complexes.

  20. Binary ionic porphyrin nanosheets: electronic and light-harvesting properties regulated by crystal structure.

    PubMed

    Tian, Yongming; Beavers, Christine M; Busani, Tito; Martin, Kathleen E; Jacobsen, John L; Mercado, Brandon Q; Swartzentruber, Brian S; van Swol, Frank; Medforth, Craig J; Shelnutt, John A

    2012-03-07

    Crystalline solids self-assembled from anionic and cationic porphyrins provide a new class of multifunctional optoelectronic micro- and nanomaterials. A 1 : 1 combination of zinc(II) tetra(4-sulfonatophenyl)porphyrin (ZnTPPS) and tin(IV) tetra(N-methyl-4-pyridiniumyl)porphyrin (SnTNMePyP) gives porphyrin nanosheets with high aspect ratios and varying thickness. The room temperature preparation of the nanosheets has provided the first X-ray crystal structure of a cooperative binary ionic (CBI) solid. The unit cell contains one and one-half molecules of aquo-ZnTPPS(4-) (an electron donor) and three half molecules of dihydroxy-SnTNMePyP(4+) (an electron acceptor). Charge balance in the solid is reached without any non-porphyrinic ions, as previously determined for other CBI nanomaterials by non-crystallographic means. The crystal structure reveals a complicated molecular arrangement with slipped π-π stacking only occurring in isolated dimers of one of the symmetrically unique zinc porphyrins. Consistent with the crystal structure, UV-visible J-aggregate bands indicative of exciton delocalization and extended π-π stacking are not observed. XRD measurements show that the structure of the Zn/Sn nanosheets is distinct from that of Zn/Sn four-leaf clover-like CBI solids reported previously. In contrast with the Zn/Sn clovers that do exhibit J-aggregate bands and are photoconductive, the nanosheets are not photoconductive. Even so, the nanosheets act as light-harvesting structures in an artificial photosynthesis system capable of reducing water to hydrogen but not as efficiently as the Zn/Sn clovers.

  1. A novel artificial nerve graft for repairing long-distance sciatic nerve defects: a self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffold-containing poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) conduit

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xianghai; Pan, Mengjie; Wen, Jinkun; Tang, Yinjuan; Hamilton, Audra D.; Li, Yuanyuan; Qian, Changhui; Liu, Zhongying; Wu, Wutian; Guo, Jiasong

    2014-01-01

    In this study, we developed a novel artificial nerve graft termed self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffold (SAPNS)-containing poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) conduit (SPC) and used it to bridge a 10-mm-long sciatic nerve defect in the rat. Retrograde tracing, behavioral testing and histomorphometric analyses showed that compared with the empty PLGA conduit implantation group, the SPC implantation group had a larger number of growing and extending axons, a markedly increased diameter of regenerated axons and a greater thickness of the myelin sheath in the conduit. Furthermore, there was an increase in the size of the neuromuscular junction and myofiber diameter in the target muscle. These findings suggest that the novel artificial SPC nerve graft can promote axonal regeneration and remyelination in the transected peripheral nerve and can be used for repairing peripheral nerve injury. PMID:25657734

  2. Functionalized Nanoparticles and Surfaces for Controlled Chemical Catalysis and Effective Light Harvesting

    SciTech Connect

    Marye Anne Fox, James K. Whitesell

    2012-11-02

    We have prepared a range of such arrays as key components for biotechnology and photonic applications. These involve self-assembled arrays of increasing complexity with three-dimensionally disposed multilayer interactions. These arrays also include dendrimers as the distinguishing structural building blocks. These photoactive integrated systems have a regular, highly-branched, three-dimensional architecture. Structural modifications of these units include variation of the core, bridging layers, and terminal groups. These modifications result in a large array of dendritic molecules with potential applications for light harvesting.

  3. Nanopropulsion by biocatalytic self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Leckie, Joy; Hope, Alexander; Hughes, Meghan; Debnath, Sisir; Fleming, Scott; Wark, Alastair W; Ulijn, Rein V; Haw, Mark D

    2014-09-23

    A number of organisms and organelles are capable of self-propulsion at the micro- and nanoscales. Production of simple man-made mimics of biological transportation systems may prove relevant to achieving movement in artificial cells and nano/micronscale robotics that may be of biological and nanotechnological importance. We demonstrate the propulsion of particles based on catalytically controlled molecular self-assembly and fiber formation at the particle surface. Specifically, phosphatase enzymes (acting as the engine) are conjugated to a quantum dot (the vehicle), and are subsequently exposed to micellar aggregates (fuel) that upon biocatalytic dephosphorylation undergo fibrillar self-assembly, which in turn causes propulsion. The motion of individual enzyme/quantum dot conjugates is followed directly using fluorescence microscopy. While overall movement remains random, the enzyme-conjugates exhibit significantly faster transport in the presence of the fiber forming system, compared to controls without fuel, a non-self-assembling substrate, or a substrate which assembles into spherical, rather than fibrous structures upon enzymatic dephosphorylation. When increasing the concentration of the fiber-forming fuel, the speed of the conjugates increases compared to non-self-assembling substrate, although directionality remains random.

  4. [INVITED] Self-assembled optical metamaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baron, Alexandre; Aradian, Ashod; Ponsinet, Virginie; Barois, Philippe

    2016-08-01

    Self-assembled metamaterials constitute a promising platform to achieving bulk and homogenous optical materials that exhibit unusual effective medium properties. For many years now, the research community has contemplated lithographically fabricated metasurfaces, with extraordinary optical features. However, achieving large volumes at low cost is still a challenge by top-down fabrication. Bottom-up fabrication, that relies both on nanochemistry and self-assembly, is capable of building such materials while greatly reducing the energy footprint in the formulation of the metamaterial. Self-assembled metamaterials have shown that they are capable of reaching unprecedented values of bulkiness and homogeneity figures of merit. This feat is achieved by synthesizing plasmonic nanoresonators (meta-atoms in the sense of artificial polarizable units) and assembling them into a fully three-dimensional matrix through a variety of methods. Furthermore it has been shown that a wide range of material parameters can be tailored by controlling the geometry and composition of the meta-atoms as well as the volume fraction of the nano-objects in the metamaterial. Here we conduct a non-comprehensive review of some of the recent trends in self-assembled optical metamaterials and illustrate these trends with our recent work.

  5. Lessons from nature about solar light harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholes, Gregory D.; Fleming, Graham R.; Olaya-Castro, Alexandra; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2011-10-01

    Solar fuel production often starts with the energy from light being absorbed by an assembly of molecules; this electronic excitation is subsequently transferred to a suitable acceptor. For example, in photosynthesis, antenna complexes capture sunlight and direct the energy to reaction centres that then carry out the associated chemistry. In this Review, we describe the principles learned from studies of various natural antenna complexes and suggest how to elucidate strategies for designing light-harvesting systems. We envisage that such systems will be used for solar fuel production, to direct and regulate excitation energy flow using molecular organizations that facilitate feedback and control, or to transfer excitons over long distances. Also described are the notable properties of light-harvesting chromophores, spatial-energetic landscapes, the roles of excitonic states and quantum coherence, as well as how antennas are regulated and photoprotected.

  6. Photon echo studies of photosynthetic light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Read, Elizabeth L; Lee, Hohjai; Fleming, Graham R

    2009-01-01

    The broad linewidths in absorption spectra of photosynthetic complexes obscure information related to their structure and function. Photon echo techniques represent a powerful class of time-resolved electronic spectroscopy that allow researchers to probe the interactions normally hidden under broad linewidths with sufficient time resolution to follow the fastest energy transfer events in light harvesting. Here, we outline the technical approach and applications of two types of photon echo experiments: the photon echo peak shift and two-dimensional (2D) Fourier transform photon echo spectroscopy. We review several extensions of these techniques to photosynthetic complexes. Photon echo peak shift spectroscopy can be used to determine the strength of coupling between a pigment and its surrounding environment including neighboring pigments and to quantify timescales of energy transfer. Two-dimensional spectroscopy yields a frequency-resolved map of absorption and emission processes, allowing coupling interactions and energy transfer pathways to be viewed directly. Furthermore, 2D spectroscopy reveals structural information such as the relative orientations of coupled transitions. Both classes of experiments can be used to probe the quantum mechanical nature of photosynthetic light-harvesting: peak shift experiments allow quantification of correlated energetic fluctuations between pigments, while 2D techniques measure quantum beating directly, both of which indicate the extent of quantum coherence over multiple pigment sites in the protein complex. The mechanistic and structural information obtained by these techniques reveals valuable insights into the design principles of photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes, and a multitude of variations on the methods outlined here.

  7. Photosynthetic light harvesting: excitons and coherence

    PubMed Central

    Fassioli, Francesca; Dinshaw, Rayomond; Arpin, Paul C.; Scholes, Gregory D.

    2014-01-01

    Photosynthesis begins with light harvesting, where specialized pigment–protein complexes transform sunlight into electronic excitations delivered to reaction centres to initiate charge separation. There is evidence that quantum coherence between electronic excited states plays a role in energy transfer. In this review, we discuss how quantum coherence manifests in photosynthetic light harvesting and its implications. We begin by examining the concept of an exciton, an excited electronic state delocalized over several spatially separated molecules, which is the most widely available signature of quantum coherence in light harvesting. We then discuss recent results concerning the possibility that quantum coherence between electronically excited states of donors and acceptors may give rise to a quantum coherent evolution of excitations, modifying the traditional incoherent picture of energy transfer. Key to this (partially) coherent energy transfer appears to be the structure of the environment, in particular the participation of non-equilibrium vibrational modes. We discuss the open questions and controversies regarding quantum coherent energy transfer and how these can be addressed using new experimental techniques. PMID:24352671

  8. Accessing exciton transport in light-harvesting structures with plasmonic nanotip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saikin, Semion K.; Feist, Johannes; Homer Reid, M. T.; Lukin, Mikhail D.; Aspuru-Guzik, Alan

    2012-02-01

    Natural light-harvesting complexes, such as that of plant cells or photosynthetic bacteria, are considered as possible prototypes for artificially designed solar cell materials. In these structures the energy of light absorbed by a peripheral antenna is transmitted very efficiently in a form of excitons to a reaction center. Usually, information about the exciton transport is obtained from time-resolved nonlinear optical experiments where the frequencies of a pump and a probe fields select particular electronic transitions in the light-harvesting complex. We explore a complimentary setup utilizing a plasmonic nanotip as a local sub-wavelength probe of excitation dynamics. As specific examples we consider an LHII complex involved in the light-harvesting process of purple bacteria and a Fenna-Matthews-Olson pigment-protein complex of green-sulphur bacteria.

  9. Gold nanoparticle functionalized artificial nacre: facile in situ growth of nanoparticles on montmorillonite nanosheets, self-assembly, and their multiple properties.

    PubMed

    Yao, Hong-Bin; Mao, Li-Bo; Yan, You-Xian; Cong, Huai-Ping; Lei, Xuan; Yu, Shu-Hong

    2012-09-25

    Artificial nacre based on clay nanosheets have been emerging as a new generation of bioinspired materials due to their super mechanical, fire-retardant, heat-shield, and gas barrier properties. Functional design in artificial nacre is highly demanded to further broaden the applications of these promising bioinspired materials. However, there is rarely a report on the functionalization of artificial nacre at present possibly due to the lack of a feasible strategy to introduce functional components in nacre-like materials without weakening other properties. In this study, we report a feasible method to fabricate artificial nacre-like functional hybrid films by using Au nanoparticle (NP) modified natural clay montmorillonite (MTM) nanosheets as efficient two-dimensional building blocks. First, Au NPs-chitosan-MTM hybrid nanosheets were prepared and homogeneously dispersed in deionized water by the facile in situ growth of Au NPs on chitosan-MTM nanosheets. Then, the obtained Au NPs-chitosan-MTM hybrid nanosheet suspension can be sprayed or vacuum filtrated to form nacre-like layered hybrid nanocoatings or free-standing hybrid films, respectively. Finally, as-fabricated artificial nacre nanocoatings or hybrid films have been demonstrated to behave with surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS), catalytic, and photothermal conversion properties indicating the successful functionalization of artificial nacre by introducing Au NPs.

  10. Self-Assembling Hydrogel Scaffolds for Photocatalytic Hydrogen Production

    PubMed Central

    Weingarten, Adam S.; Kazantsev, Roman V.; Palmer, Liam C.; McClendon, Mark; Koltonow, Andrew R.; Samuel, Amanda P. S.; Kiebala, Derek J.; Wasielewski, Michael R.; Stupp, Samuel I.

    2015-01-01

    catalysts for water oxidation and proton reduction3-7. In other recent work, catalysts have been coupled to light absorbing CdSe quantum dots8, Si microrods9, and organic dyes10,11 to create artificial photosynthetic systems. Also functional devices capable of performing water-splitting and fuel-generating reactions using earth-abundant resources have been demonstrated12. The development of bionspired soft materials that can be shaped into forms and integrate light-harvesting, charge transport, and catalytic functions to produce solar fuels is an obvious gap. This gap can be addressed through self-assembly strategies for materials in which a bottom-up approach fine tunes all functional aspects of a catalytic system13. Organic systems may have shorter lifetimes than their inorganic counterparts, but could have their own niche in sustainable energy given their soft matter nature and low energy requirements for production. We report here on a strategy to create supramolecular hydrogels that integrate both light-absorbing chromophores and catalysts into a material for light-driven hydrogen (H2) production. Our work here is focused only on the supramolecular chemistry necessary to create a formable catalytic material and therefore does not explore its possible integration into a photocathode that would not require a sacrificial electron donor. We designed a charged amphiphilic chromophore with the capacity to self-assemble into supramolecular polymers via hydrophobic collapse. At sufficiently high concentrations and under electrostatic screening conditions, charged supramolecular polymers can easily produce a three-dimensional network that takes the form of a gel. These networks could be highly hydrated and host the soluble components necessary to produce the solar fuel. At the same time, much like natural photosynthetic antennae, supramolecular structures of conjugated molecules formed through π orbital overlap should have the capacity to absorb light, split excitons, and

  11. Quantum mechanical light harvesting mechanisms in photosynthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholes, Gregory

    2012-02-01

    More than 10 million billion photons of light strike a leaf each second. Incredibly, almost every red-coloured photon is captured by chlorophyll pigments and initiates steps to plant growth. Last year we reported that marine algae use quantum mechanics in order to optimize photosynthesis [1], a process essential to its survival. These and other insights from the natural world promise to revolutionize our ability to harness the power of the sun. In a recent review [2] we described the principles learned from studies of various natural antenna complexes and suggested how to utilize that knowledge to shape future technologies. We forecast the need to develop ways to direct and regulate excitation energy flow using molecular organizations that facilitate feedback and control--not easy given that the energy is only stored for a billionth of a second. In this presentation I will describe new results that explain the observation and meaning of quantum-coherent energy transfer. [4pt] [1] Elisabetta Collini, Cathy Y. Wong, Krystyna E. Wilk, Paul M. G. Curmi, Paul Brumer, and Gregory D. Scholes, ``Coherently wired light-harvesting in photosynthetic marine algae at ambient temperature'' Nature 463, 644-648 (2010).[0pt] [2] Gregory D. Scholes, Graham R. Fleming, Alexandra Olaya-Castro and Rienk van Grondelle, ``Lessons from nature about solar light harvesting'' Nature Chem. 3, 763-774 (2011).

  12. Design strategies for self-assembly of discrete targets

    SciTech Connect

    Madge, Jim; Miller, Mark A.

    2015-07-28

    Both biological and artificial self-assembly processes can take place by a range of different schemes, from the successive addition of identical building blocks to hierarchical sequences of intermediates, all the way to the fully addressable limit in which each component is unique. In this paper, we introduce an idealized model of cubic particles with patterned faces that allows self-assembly strategies to be compared and tested. We consider a simple octameric target, starting with the minimal requirements for successful self-assembly and comparing the benefits and limitations of more sophisticated hierarchical and addressable schemes. Simulations are performed using a hybrid dynamical Monte Carlo protocol that allows self-assembling clusters to rearrange internally while still providing Stokes-Einstein-like diffusion of aggregates of different sizes. Our simulations explicitly capture the thermodynamic, dynamic, and steric challenges typically faced by self-assembly processes, including competition between multiple partially completed structures. Self-assembly pathways are extracted from the simulation trajectories by a fully extendable scheme for identifying structural fragments, which are then assembled into history diagrams for successfully completed target structures. For the simple target, a one-component assembly scheme is most efficient and robust overall, but hierarchical and addressable strategies can have an advantage under some conditions if high yield is a priority.

  13. Design principles of photosynthetic light-harvesting.

    PubMed

    Fleming, Graham R; Schlau-Cohen, Gabriela S; Amarnath, Kapil; Zaks, Julia

    2012-01-01

    Photosynthetic organisms are capable of harvesting solar energy with near unity quantum efficiency. Even more impressively, this efficiency can be regulated in response to the demands of photosynthetic reactions and the fluctuating light-levels of natural environments. We discuss the distinctive design principles through which photosynthetic light-harvesting functions. These emergent properties of photosynthesis appear both within individual pigment-protein complexes and in how these complexes integrate to produce a functional, regulated apparatus that drives downstream photochemistry. One important property is how the strong interactions and resultant quantum coherence, produced by the dense packing of photosynthetic pigments, provide a tool to optimize for ultrafast, directed energy transfer. We also describe how excess energy is quenched to prevent photodamage under high-light conditions, which we investigate through theory and experiment. We conclude with comments on the potential of using these features to improve solar energy devices.

  14. Applications of textured surfaces for light harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cocilovo, Byron

    Surface textures add another dimension to optical design. They can be used to redirect light, isolate spectral bands, and enhance optical fields. They effectively take up no space, so can be applied to any optical surface -- from intermediary elements to substrates. Here I present three applications of textured surfaces for light harvesting. The first project places scattering textures inside a film that can be applied to windows to scatter infrared light towards solar cells at the edges. The collected energy is then used to power tinting films. The second project uses modular diffractive structures to increase the absorption in solar cells. Lastly, structured silver surfaces are used to enhance plasmonics fields and increase two-photon excitation fluorescence.

  15. Bacteriochlorophyll aggregates self-assembled on functionalized gold nanorod cores as mimics of photosynthetic chlorosomal antennae: a single molecule study.

    PubMed

    Furumaki, Shu; Vacha, Frantisek; Hirata, Shuzo; Vacha, Martin

    2014-03-25

    We prepare artificial aggregates that mimic the structure and function of natural chlorosomal light harvesting complexes of green photosynthetic bacteria. Gold nanorods functionalized with hydroxyl groups and immobilized on a substrate serve as cores for the growth of bacteriochlorophyll (BChl) aggregates from a buffer solution. The BChl pigments form large self-assembled aggregate particles with sizes more than twice that of natural chlorosomes. The size is controllable by the aggregation time. The aggregates are characterized on a single-particle level by atomic force microscopy, electron microscopy, and single-molecule spectroscopy. The absorption and fluorescence spectral properties which reflect the molecular level arrangement of the BChl aggregates closely resemble those of the natural chlorosomes of the photosynthetic bacterium Chlorobaculum tepidum. On the other hand, the results of linear dichroism and circular dichroism are different from those of the chlorosomes and indicate a different mesoscopic structure for the artificial aggregates. These results emphasize the structural role played by the baseplate pigment-protein complex in natural chlorosomes.

  16. Self-assembly via microfluidics.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lei; Sánchez, Samuel

    2015-12-07

    The self-assembly of amphiphilic building blocks has attracted extensive interest in myriad fields in recent years, due to their great potential in the nanoscale design of functional hybrid materials. Microfluidic techniques provide an intriguing method to control kinetic aspects of the self-assembly of molecular amphiphiles by the facile adjustment of the hydrodynamics of the fluids. Up to now, there have been several reports about one-step direct self-assembly of different building blocks with versatile and multi-shape products without templates, which demonstrated the advantages of microfluidics. These assemblies with different morphologies have great applications in various areas such as cancer therapy, micromotor fabrication, and controlled drug delivery.

  17. The use of layer by layer self-assembled coatings of hyaluronic acid and cationized gelatin to improve the biocompatibility of poly(ethylene terephthalate) artificial ligaments for reconstruction of the anterior cruciate ligament.

    PubMed

    Li, Hong; Chen, Chen; Zhang, Shurong; Jiang, Jia; Tao, Hongyue; Xu, Jialing; Sun, Jianguo; Zhong, Wei; Chen, Shiyi

    2012-11-01

    In this study layer by layer (LBL) self-assembled coatings of hyaluronic acid (HA) and cationized gelatin (CG) were used to modify polyethylene terephthalate (PET) artificial ligament grafts. Changes in the surface properties were characterized by scanning electron microscopy, attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, and contact angle and biomechanical measurements. The cell compatibility of this HA-CG coating was investigated in vitro on PET films seeded with human foreskin dermal fibroblasts over 7days. The results of our in vitro studies demonstrated that the HA-CG coating significantly enhanced cell adhesion, facilitated cell growth, and suppressed the expression of inflammation-related genes relative to a pure PET graft. Furthermore, rabbit and porcine anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction models were used to evaluate the effect of this LBL coating in vivo. The animal experiment results proved that this LBL coating significantly inhibited inflammatory cell infiltration and promoted new ligament tissue regeneration among the graft fibers. In addition, the formation of type I collagen in the HA-CG coating group was much higher than in the control group. Based on these results we conclude that PET grafts coated with HA-CG have considerable potential as substitutes for ligament reconstruction.

  18. Self-assembling amphiphilic peptides†

    PubMed Central

    Dehsorkhi, Ashkan; Castelletto, Valeria; Hamley, Ian W

    2014-01-01

    The self-assembly of several classes of amphiphilic peptides is reviewed, and selected applications are discussed. We discuss recent work on the self-assembly of lipopeptides, surfactant-like peptides and amyloid peptides derived from the amyloid-β peptide. The influence of environmental variables such as pH and temperature on aggregate nanostructure is discussed. Enzyme-induced remodelling due to peptide cleavage and nanostructure control through photocleavage or photo-cross-linking are also considered. Lastly, selected applications of amphiphilic peptides in biomedicine and materials science are outlined. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Peptide Science published by European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:24729276

  19. Long range excitonic transport in a biomimetic system inspired by the bacterial light-harvesting apparatus.

    PubMed

    Harel, Elad

    2012-05-07

    Photosynthesis, the process by which energy from sunlight drives cellular metabolism, relies on a unique organization of light-harvesting and reaction center complexes. Recently, the organization of light-harvesting LH2 complexes and dimeric reaction center-light-harvesting I-PufX core complexes in membranes of purple non-sulfur bacteria was revealed by atomic force microscopy [S. Bahatyrova et al., Nature (London) 430, 1058 (2004)]. Here, we discuss optimal exciton transfer in a biomimetic system closely modeled on the structure of LH2 and its organization within the membrane using a Markovian quantum model with dissipation and trapping added phenomenologically. In a deliberate manner, we neglect the high level detail of the bacterial light-harvesting complex and its interaction with the phonon bath in order to elucidate a set of design principles that may be incorporated in artificial pigment-scaffold constructs in a supramolecular assembly. We show that our scheme reproduces many of the most salient features found in their natural counterpart and may be largely explained by simple electrostatic considerations. Most importantly, we show that quantum effects act primarily to enforce robustness with respect to spatial and spectral disorder between and within complexes. The implications of such an arrangement are discussed in the context of biomimetic photosynthetic analogs capable of transferring energy efficiently across tens to hundreds of nanometers.

  20. Long range excitonic transport in a biomimetic system inspired by the bacterial light-harvesting apparatus

    SciTech Connect

    Harel, Elad

    2012-05-07

    Photosynthesis, the process by which energy from sunlight drives cellular metabolism, relies on a unique organization of light-harvesting and reaction center complexes. Recently, the organization of light-harvesting LH2 complexes and dimeric reaction center-light-harvesting I-PufX core complexes in membranes of purple non-sulfur bacteria was revealed by atomic force microscopy [S. Bahatyrova et al., Nature (London) 430, 1058 (2004)]. Here, we discuss optimal exciton transfer in a biomimetic system closely modeled on the structure of LH2 and its organization within the membrane using a Markovian quantum model with dissipation and trapping added phenomenologically. In a deliberate manner, we neglect the high level detail of the bacterial light-harvesting complex and its interaction with the phonon bath in order to elucidate a set of design principles that may be incorporated in artificial pigment-scaffold constructs in a supramolecular assembly. We show that our scheme reproduces many of the most salient features found in their natural counterpart and may be largely explained by simple electrostatic considerations. Most importantly, we show that quantum effects act primarily to enforce robustness with respect to spatial and spectral disorder between and within complexes. The implications of such an arrangement are discussed in the context of biomimetic photosynthetic analogs capable of transferring energy efficiently across tens to hundreds of nanometers.

  1. Long range excitonic transport in a biomimetic system inspired by the bacterial light-harvesting apparatus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harel, Elad

    2012-05-01

    Photosynthesis, the process by which energy from sunlight drives cellular metabolism, relies on a unique organization of light-harvesting and reaction center complexes. Recently, the organization of light-harvesting LH2 complexes and dimeric reaction center-light-harvesting I-PufX core complexes in membranes of purple non-sulfur bacteria was revealed by atomic force microscopy [S. Bahatyrova et al., Nature (London) 430, 1058 (2004)]. Here, we discuss optimal exciton transfer in a biomimetic system closely modeled on the structure of LH2 and its organization within the membrane using a Markovian quantum model with dissipation and trapping added phenomenologically. In a deliberate manner, we neglect the high level detail of the bacterial light-harvesting complex and its interaction with the phonon bath in order to elucidate a set of design principles that may be incorporated in artificial pigment-scaffold constructs in a supramolecular assembly. We show that our scheme reproduces many of the most salient features found in their natural counterpart and may be largely explained by simple electrostatic considerations. Most importantly, we show that quantum effects act primarily to enforce robustness with respect to spatial and spectral disorder between and within complexes. The implications of such an arrangement are discussed in the context of biomimetic photosynthetic analogs capable of transferring energy efficiently across tens to hundreds of nanometers.

  2. Binary ionic porphyrin nanosheets: electronic and light-harvesting properties regulated by crystal structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tian, Yongming; M. Beavers, Christine; Busani, Tito; Martin, Kathleen E.; Jacobsen, John L.; Mercado, Brandon Q.; Swartzentruber, Brian S.; van Swol, Frank; Medforth, Craig J.; Shelnutt, John A.

    2012-02-01

    Crystalline solids self-assembled from anionic and cationic porphyrins provide a new class of multifunctional optoelectronic micro- and nanomaterials. A 1 : 1 combination of zinc(ii) tetra(4-sulfonatophenyl)porphyrin (ZnTPPS) and tin(iv) tetra(N-methyl-4-pyridiniumyl)porphyrin (SnTNMePyP) gives porphyrin nanosheets with high aspect ratios and varying thickness. The room temperature preparation of the nanosheets has provided the first X-ray crystal structure of a cooperative binary ionic (CBI) solid. The unit cell contains one and one-half molecules of aquo-ZnTPPS4- (an electron donor) and three half molecules of dihydroxy-SnTNMePyP4+ (an electron acceptor). Charge balance in the solid is reached without any non-porphyrinic ions, as previously determined for other CBI nanomaterials by non-crystallographic means. The crystal structure reveals a complicated molecular arrangement with slipped π-π stacking only occurring in isolated dimers of one of the symmetrically unique zinc porphyrins. Consistent with the crystal structure, UV-visible J-aggregate bands indicative of exciton delocalization and extended π-π stacking are not observed. XRD measurements show that the structure of the Zn/Sn nanosheets is distinct from that of Zn/Sn four-leaf clover-like CBI solids reported previously. In contrast with the Zn/Sn clovers that do exhibit J-aggregate bands and are photoconductive, the nanosheets are not photoconductive. Even so, the nanosheets act as light-harvesting structures in an artificial photosynthesis system capable of reducing water to hydrogen but not as efficiently as the Zn/Sn clovers.Crystalline solids self-assembled from anionic and cationic porphyrins provide a new class of multifunctional optoelectronic micro- and nanomaterials. A 1 : 1 combination of zinc(ii) tetra(4-sulfonatophenyl)porphyrin (ZnTPPS) and tin(iv) tetra(N-methyl-4-pyridiniumyl)porphyrin (SnTNMePyP) gives porphyrin nanosheets with high aspect ratios and varying thickness. The room

  3. Interference lithographic nanopatterning of plant and bacterial light-harvesting complexes on gold substrates

    PubMed Central

    Patole, Samson; Vasilev, Cvetelin; El-Zubir, Osama; Wang, Lin; Johnson, Matthew P.; Cadby, Ashley J.; Leggett, Graham J.; Hunter, C. Neil

    2015-01-01

    We describe a facile approach for nanopatterning of photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes over macroscopic areas, and use optical spectroscopy to demonstrate retention of native properties by both site-specifically and non-specifically attached photosynthetic membrane proteins. A Lloyd's mirror dual-beam interferometer was used to expose self-assembled monolayers of amine-terminated alkylthiolates on gold to laser irradiation. Following exposure, photo-oxidized adsorbates were replaced by oligo(ethylene glycol) terminated thiols, and the remaining intact amine-functionalized regions were used for attachment of the major light-harvesting chlorophyll–protein complex from plants, LHCII. These amine patterns could be derivatized with nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA), so that polyhistidine-tagged bacteriochlorophyll–protein complexes from phototrophic bacteria could be attached with a defined surface orientation. By varying parameters such as the angle between the interfering beams and the laser irradiation dose, it was possible to vary the period and widths of NTA and amine-functionalized lines on the surfaces; periods varied from 1200 to 240 nm and linewidths as small as 60 nm (λ/4) were achieved. This level of control over the surface chemistry was reflected in the surface topology of the protein nanostructures imaged by atomic force microscopy; fluorescence imaging and spectral measurements demonstrated that the surface-attached proteins had retained their native functionality. PMID:26464784

  4. Polymer light harvesting composites for optoelectronic applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Sam-Shajing; Wang, Dan

    2015-09-01

    Polymer based optoelectronic composites and thin film devices exhibit great potential in space applications due to their lightweight, flexible shape, high photon absorption coefficients, and robust radiation tolerance in space environment. Polymer/dye composites appear promising for optoelectronics applications due to potential enhancements in both light harvesting and charge separation. In this study, the optoelectronic properties of a series of molecular dyes paired with a conjugated polymer Poly(3-hexylthiophene-2,5-diyl) (P3HT) were investigated. Specifically, the solution PL quenching coefficients (Ksv) of dye/polymer follows a descending order from dyes of Chloro(protoporphyrinato)iron(III) (Hemin), Protoporphyrin, to meso-Tetra(4-carboxyphenyl)porphine (TCPP). In optoelectronic devices made of the P3HT/dye/PCBM composites, the short circuit current densities Jsc as well as the overall power conversion efficiencies (PCE) also follow a descending order from Hemin, Protoporphyrin, to TCPP, despite Hemin exhibits the intermediate polymer/dye LUMO (lowest unoccupied molecular orbital) offset and lowest absorption coefficient as compared to the other two dyes, i.e., the cell optoelectronic efficiency did not follow the LUMO offsets which are the key driving forces for the photo induced charge separations. This study reveals that too large LUMO offset or electron transfer driving force may result in smaller PL quenching and optoelectronic conversion efficiency, this could be another experimental evidence for the Marcus electron transfer model, particularly for the Marcus `inverted region'. It appears an optimum electron transfer driving force or strong PL quenching appears more critical than absorption coefficient for optoelectronic conversion devices.

  5. Self-assembled magnetocapillary swimmers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hubert, Maxime; Lumay, Geoffroy; Weyer, Floriane; Obara, Noriko; Vandewalle, Nicolas

    2013-11-01

    Capillary driven self-assembly consists of suspending small objects at a water-air interface. Due to the effects of wetting, gravity and surface tension, the interface is slightly deformed, inducing a net force between the particles. In the experiments we present, we consider the presence of a vertical magnetic field acting on soft-ferromagnetic particles. Dipole-dipole repulsion competes with capillary attraction such that 2d ordered structures are self-assembling. By adding a secondary horizontal and oscillating magnetic field, periodic deformations of the assembly are induced. Pulsating particle arrangements start to swim, either translating or rotating. The physical mechanisms and geometrical ingredients behind this cooperative locomotion are identified. Furthermore, strategies to control the swimming dynamics are proposed.

  6. Self-assembled plasmonic metamaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mühlig, Stefan; Cunningham, Alastair; Dintinger, José; Scharf, Toralf; Bürgi, Thomas; Lederer, Falk; Rockstuhl, Carsten

    2013-07-01

    Nowadays for the sake of convenience most plasmonic nanostructures are fabricated by top-down nanofabrication technologies. This offers great degrees of freedom to tailor the geometry with unprecedented precision. However, it often causes disadvantages as well. The structures available are usually planar and periodically arranged. Therefore, bulk plasmonic structures are difficult to fabricate and the periodic arrangement causes undesired effects, e.g., strong spatial dispersion is observed in metamaterials. These limitations can be mitigated by relying on bottom-up nanofabrication technologies. There, self-assembly methods and techniques from the field of colloidal nanochemistry are used to build complex functional unit cells in solution from an ensemble of simple building blocks, i.e., in most cases plasmonic nanoparticles. Achievable structures are characterized by a high degree of nominal order only on a short-range scale. The precise spatial arrangement across larger dimensions is not possible in most cases; leading essentially to amorphous structures. Such self-assembled nanostructures require novel analytical means to describe their properties, innovative designs of functional elements that possess a desired near- and far-field response, and entail genuine nanofabrication and characterization techniques. Eventually, novel applications have to be perceived that are adapted to the specifics of the self-assembled nanostructures. This review shall document recent progress in this field of research. Emphasis is put on bottom-up amorphous metamaterials. We document the state-of-the-art but also critically assess the problems that have to be overcome.

  7. Multifunctional self-assembled monolayers

    SciTech Connect

    Zawodzinski, T.; Bar, G.; Rubin, S.; Uribe, F.; Ferrais, J.

    1996-06-01

    This is the final report of at three year, Laboratory-Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The specific goals of this research project were threefold: to develop multifunctional self-assembled monolayers, to understand the role of monolayer structure on the functioning of such systems, and to apply this knowledge to the development of electrochemical enzyme sensors. An array of molecules that can be used to attach electrochemically active biomolecules to gold surfaces has been synthesized. Several members of a class of electroactive compounds have been characterized and the factors controlling surface modification are beginning to be characterized. Enzymes have been attached to self-assembled molecules arranged on the gold surface, a critical step toward the ultimate goal of this project. Several alternative enzyme attachment strategies to achieve robust enzyme- modified surfaces have been explored. Several means of juxtaposing enzymes and mediators, electroactive compounds through which the enzyme can exchange electrons with the electrode surface, have also been investigated. Finally, the development of sensitive biosensors based on films loaded with nanoscale-supported gold particles that have surface modified with the self-assembled enzyme and mediator have been explored.

  8. Spectroscopic Investigations of the Photophysics of Cryptophyte Light-Harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinshaw, Rayomond

    The biological significance of photosynthesis is indisputable as it is necessary for nearly all life on earth. Photosynthesis provides chemical energy for plants, algae, and bacteria, while heterotrophic organisms rely on these species as their ultimate food source. The initial step in photosynthesis requires the absorption of sunlight to create electronic excitations. Light-harvesting proteins play the functional role of capturing solar radiation and transferring the resulting excitation to the reaction centers where it is used to carry out the chemical reactions of photosynthesis. Despite the wide variety of light-harvesting protein structures and arrangements, most light-harvesting proteins are able to utilize the captured solar energy for charge separation with near perfect quantum efficiency.1 This thesis will focus on understanding the energy transfer dynamics and photophysics of a specific subset of light-harvesting antennae known as phycobiliproteins. These proteins are extracted from cryptophyte algae and are investigated using steady-state and ultrafast spectroscopic techniques.

  9. Exciton coupling induces vibronic hyperchromism in light-harvesting complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulze, Jan; Torbjörnsson, Magne; Kühn, Oliver; Pullerits, Tõnu

    2014-04-01

    The recently suggested possibility that weak vibronic transitions can be excitonically enhanced in light-harvesting complexes is studied in detail. A vibronic exciton dimer model that includes ground-state vibrations is investigated using the multi-configuration time-dependent Hartree method with a parameter set typical to photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes. The absorption spectra are discussed based on the Coulomb coupling, the detuning of the site energies, and the number of vibrational modes. Fluorescence spectra calculations show that the spectral densities obtained from the low-temperature fluorescence line-narrowing measurements of light-harvesting systems need to be corrected for the effects of excitons. For the J-aggregate configuration, as in most light-harvesting complexes, the true spectral density has a larger amplitude than that obtained from the measurement.

  10. Synergistic Two-Photon Absorption Enhancement in Photosynthetic Light Harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Kuo-Mei; Chen, Yu-Wei; Gao, Ting-Fong

    2012-06-01

    The grand scale fixation of solar energies into chemical substances by photosynthetic reactions of light-harvesting organisms provides Earth's other life forms a thriving environment. Scientific explorations in the past decades have unraveled the fundamental photophysical and photochemical processes in photosynthesis. Higher plants, green algae, and light-harvesting bacteria utilize organized pigment-protein complexes to harvest solar power efficiently and the resultant electronic excitations are funneled into a reaction center, where the first charge separation process takes place. Here we show experimental evidences that green algae (Chlorella vulgaris) in vivo display a synergistic two-photon absorption enhancement in their photosynthetic light harvesting. Their absorption coefficients at various wavelengths display dramatic dependence on the photon flux. This newly found phenomenon is attributed to a coherence-electronic-energy-transfer-mediated (CEETRAM) photon absorption process of light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes of green algae. Under the ambient light level, algae and higher plants can utilize this quantum mechanical mechanism to create two entangled electronic excitations adjacently in their light-harvesting networks. Concerted multiple electron transfer reactions in the reaction centers and oxygen evolving complexes can be implemented efficiently by the coherent motion of two entangled excitons from antennae to the charge separation reaction sites. To fabricate nanostructured, synthetic light-harvesting apparatus, the paramount role of the CEETRAM photon absorption mechanism should be seriously considered in the strategic guidelines.

  11. Stereochemistry in subcomponent self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Castilla, Ana M; Ramsay, William J; Nitschke, Jonathan R

    2014-07-15

    CONSPECTUS: As Pasteur noted more than 150 years ago, asymmetry exists in matter at all organization levels. Biopolymers such as proteins or DNA adopt one-handed conformations, as a result of the chirality of their constituent building blocks. Even at the level of elementary particles, asymmetry exists due to parity violation in the weak nuclear force. While the origin of homochirality in living systems remains obscure, as does the possibility of its connection with broken symmetries at larger or smaller length scales, its centrality to biomolecular structure is clear: the single-handed forms of bio(macro)molecules interlock in ways that depend upon their handednesses. Dynamic artificial systems, such as helical polymers and other supramolecular structures, have provided a means to study the mechanisms of transmission and amplification of stereochemical information, which are key processes to understand in the context of the origins and functions of biological homochirality. Control over stereochemical information transfer in self-assembled systems will also be crucial for the development of new applications in chiral recognition and separation, asymmetric catalysis, and molecular devices. In this Account, we explore different aspects of stereochemistry encountered during the use of subcomponent self-assembly, whereby complex structures are prepared through the simultaneous formation of dynamic coordinative (N → metal) and covalent (N═C) bonds. This technique provides a useful method to study stereochemical information transfer processes within metal-organic assemblies, which may contain different combinations of fixed (carbon) and labile (metal) stereocenters. We start by discussing how simple subcomponents with fixed stereogenic centers can be incorporated in the organic ligands of mononuclear coordination complexes and communicate stereochemical information to the metal center, resulting in diastereomeric enrichment. Enantiopure subcomponents were then

  12. Efficiency enhancement in GaAs solar cells using self-assembled microspheres.

    PubMed

    Chang, Te-Hung; Wu, Pei-Hsuan; Chen, Sheng-Hui; Chan, Chia-Hua; Lee, Cheng-Chung; Chen, Chii-Chang; Su, Yan-Kuin

    2009-04-13

    In this study we develop an efficient light harvesting scheme that can enhance the efficiency of GaAs solar cells using self-assembled microspheres. Based on the scattering of the microspheres and the theory of photonic crystals, the path length can be increased. In addition, the self-assembly of microspheres is one of the simplest and the fastest methods with which to build a 2D periodic structure. The experimental results are confirmed by the use of a simulation in which a finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method is used to analyze the absorption and electric field of the 2D periodic structure. Both the results of the numerical simulations and the experimental results show an increase in the conversion power efficiency of GaAs solar cell of about 25% when 1 microm microspheres were assembled on the surface of GaAs solar cells.

  13. Self-assembling magnetic "snakes"

    SciTech Connect

    2010-01-01

    Nickel particles float peacefully in a liquid medium until a giant snake seems to swim by and snatch several particles up, adding to its own mass. The self-assembled "snakes" act like biological systems, but they are not alive and are driven by a magnetic field. The research may someday offer some insight into the organization of life itself. Read more at Wired: http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/03/snakes/ Research and video by Alex Snezhko and Igor Aronson, Argonne National Laboratory.

  14. Supramolecular coordination polymer formed from artificial light-harvesting dendrimer.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hosoowi; Jeong, Young-Hwan; Kim, Joo-Ho; Kim, Inhye; Lee, Eunji; Jang, Woo-Dong

    2015-09-30

    We report the formation of supramolecular coordination polymers formed from multiporphyrin dendrimers (PZnPM; M = FB or Cu), composed of the focal freebase porphyrin (PFB) or cupper porphyrin (PCu) with eight zinc porphyrin (PZn) wings, and multipyridyl porphyrins (PyPM; M = FB or Cu), PFB or PCu with eight pyridyl groups, through multiple axial coordination interactions of pyridyl groups to PZns. UV-vis absorption spectra were recorded upon titration of PyPFB to PZnPFB. Differential spectra, obtained by subtracting the absorption of PZnPFB without guest addition as well as the absorption of PyPFB, exhibited clear isosbestic points with saturation binding at 1 equiv addition of PyPFB to PZnPFB. Job's plot analysis also indicated 1:1 stoichiometry for the saturation binding. The apparent association constant between PZnPFB and PyPFB (2.91 × 10(6) M(-1)), estimated by isothermal titration calorimetry, was high enough for fibrous assemblies to form at micromolar concentrations. The formation of a fibrous assembly from PZnPFB and PyPFB was visualized by atomic force microscopy and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). When a 1:1 mixture solution of PZnPFB and PyPFB (20 μM) in toluene was cast onto mica, fibrous assemblies with regular height (ca. 2 nm) were observed. TEM images obtained from 1:1 mixture solution of PZnPFB and PyPFB (0.1 wt %) in toluene clearly showed the formation of nanofibers with a regular diameter of ca. 6 nm. Fluorescence emission measurement of PZnPM indicated efficient intramolecular energy transfer from PZn to the focal PFB or PCu. By the formation of supramolecular coordination polymers, the intramolecular energy transfer changed to intermolecular energy transfer from PZnPM to PyPM. When the nonfluorescent PyPCu was titrated to fluorescent PZnPFB, fluorescence emission from the focal PFB was gradually decreased. By the titration of fluorescent PyPFB to nonfluorescent PZnPCu, fluorescence emission from PFB in PyPFB was gradually increased due to the efficient energy transfer from PZn wings in PZnPCu to PyPFB.

  15. Chemical Reactions Directed Peptide Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Rasale, Dnyaneshwar B.; Das, Apurba K.

    2015-01-01

    Fabrication of self-assembled nanostructures is one of the important aspects in nanoscience and nanotechnology. The study of self-assembled soft materials remains an area of interest due to their potential applications in biomedicine. The versatile properties of soft materials can be tuned using a bottom up approach of small molecules. Peptide based self-assembly has significant impact in biology because of its unique features such as biocompatibility, straight peptide chain and the presence of different side chain functionality. These unique features explore peptides in various self-assembly process. In this review, we briefly introduce chemical reaction-mediated peptide self-assembly. Herein, we have emphasised enzymes, native chemical ligation and photochemical reactions in the exploration of peptide self-assembly. PMID:25984603

  16. Chemical reactions directed Peptide self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Rasale, Dnyaneshwar B; Das, Apurba K

    2015-05-13

    Fabrication of self-assembled nanostructures is one of the important aspects in nanoscience and nanotechnology. The study of self-assembled soft materials remains an area of interest due to their potential applications in biomedicine. The versatile properties of soft materials can be tuned using a bottom up approach of small molecules. Peptide based self-assembly has significant impact in biology because of its unique features such as biocompatibility, straight peptide chain and the presence of different side chain functionality. These unique features explore peptides in various self-assembly process. In this review, we briefly introduce chemical reaction-mediated peptide self-assembly. Herein, we have emphasised enzymes, native chemical ligation and photochemical reactions in the exploration of peptide self-assembly.

  17. Synthesis and photophysical studies of self-assembled multicomponent supramolecular coordination prisms bearing porphyrin faces.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yanhui; Sánchez-Molina, Irene; Cao, Changsheng; Cook, Timothy R; Stang, Peter J

    2014-07-01

    Multicomponent self-assembly, wherein two unique donor precursors are combined with a single metal acceptor instead of the more common two-component assembly, can be achieved by selecting Lewis-basic sites and metal nodes that select for heteroligated coordination spheres. Platinum(II) ions show a thermodynamic preference for mixed pyridyl/carboxylate coordination environments and are thus suitable for such designs. The use of three or more unique building blocks increases the structural complexity of supramolecules. Herein, we describe the synthesis and characterization of rectangular prismatic supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) with two faces occupied by porphyrin molecules, motivated by the search for new multichromophore complexes with promising light-harvesting properties. These prisms are obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with a meso-substituted tetrapyridylporphyrin (TPyP) and dicarboxylate ligands. The generality of this self-assembly reaction is demonstrated using five dicarboxylate ligands, two based on a rigid central phenyl ring and three alkyl-spaced variants, to form a total of five free-base and five Zn-metallated porphyrin prisms. All 10 SCCs are characterized by (31)P and (1)H multinuclear NMR spectroscopy and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, confirming the structure of each self-assembly and the stoichiometry of formation. The photophysical properties of the resulting SCCs were investigated revealing that the absorption and emission properties of the free-base and metallated porphyrin prisms preserve the spectral features associated with free TPyP.

  18. Convergent synthesis of multiporphyrin light-harvesting rods

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Loewe, Robert S.

    2003-08-05

    The present invention provides a convergent method for the synthesis of light harvesting rods. The rods are oligomers of the formula A.sup.1 (A.sup.b+1).sub.b, wherein b is at least 1, A.sup.1 through A.sup.b+1 are covalently coupled rod segments, and each rod segment A.sup.1 through A.sup.1+b comprises a compound of the formula X.sup.1 (X.sup.m+1).sub.m wherein m is at least 1 and X.sup.1 through X.sup.m+1 are covalently coupled porphyrinic macrocycles. Light harvesting arrays and solar cells containing such light harvesting rods are also described, along with intermediates useful in such methods and rods produced by such methods.

  19. Design of Nanostructured Biological Materials Through Self-Assembly of Peptides and Proteins

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2002-01-01

    of applications, including scaffolding for tissue repair in regenerative medicine, drug delivery and biological surface engineering. Tirrell and...colleagues [2] designed artificial proteins that undergo self-assembly to form hydrogels responsive to pH and other environmental changes. Ghadiri and...showed that other β-sheet peptide systems can also undergo self-assembly into regular nanofiber structures. Although they share no sequence

  20. Self-Assembly: How Nature Builds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, M. Gail; Falvo, Michael R.; Broadwell, Bethany; Dotger, Sharon

    2006-01-01

    Self-assembly or spontaneous assembly is a process in which materials build themselves without assistance. This process plays a central role in the construction of biological structures and materials such as cells, viruses, and bone, and also in abiotic processes like phase transitions and crystal formation. The principles of self-assembly help…

  1. Research on Self-Assembling Quantum Dots.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1995-10-30

    0K. in a second phase of this contract we turned our efforts to the fabrication and studies of self assembled quantum dots . We first demonstrated a...method for producing InAs-GasAs self assembled quantum dots (SAD) using MBE. (AN)

  2. Self-assembled nanomaterials for photoacoustic imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Lei; Yang, Pei-Pei; Zhao, Xiao-Xiao; Wang, Hao

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, extensive endeavors have been paid to construct functional self-assembled nanomaterials for various applications such as catalysis, separation, energy and biomedicines. To date, different strategies have been developed for preparing nanomaterials with diversified structures and functionalities via fine tuning of self-assembled building blocks. In terms of biomedical applications, bioimaging technologies are urgently calling for high-efficient probes/contrast agents for high-performance bioimaging. Photoacoustic (PA) imaging is an emerging whole-body imaging modality offering high spatial resolution, deep penetration and high contrast in vivo. The self-assembled nanomaterials show high stability in vivo, specific tolerance to sterilization and prolonged half-life stability and desirable targeting properties, which is a kind of promising PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. Herein, we focus on summarizing recent advances in smart self-assembled nanomaterials with NIR absorption as PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. According to the preparation strategy of the contrast agents, the self-assembled nanomaterials are categorized into two groups, i.e., the ex situ and in situ self-assembled nanomaterials. The driving forces, assembly modes and regulation of PA properties of self-assembled nanomaterials and their applications for long-term imaging, enzyme activity detection and aggregation-induced retention (AIR) effect for diagnosis and therapy are emphasized. Finally, we conclude with an outlook towards future developments of self-assembled nanomaterials for PA imaging.

  3. Self-assembled nanomaterials for photoacoustic imaging.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lei; Yang, Pei-Pei; Zhao, Xiao-Xiao; Wang, Hao

    2016-02-07

    In recent years, extensive endeavors have been paid to construct functional self-assembled nanomaterials for various applications such as catalysis, separation, energy and biomedicines. To date, different strategies have been developed for preparing nanomaterials with diversified structures and functionalities via fine tuning of self-assembled building blocks. In terms of biomedical applications, bioimaging technologies are urgently calling for high-efficient probes/contrast agents for high-performance bioimaging. Photoacoustic (PA) imaging is an emerging whole-body imaging modality offering high spatial resolution, deep penetration and high contrast in vivo. The self-assembled nanomaterials show high stability in vivo, specific tolerance to sterilization and prolonged half-life stability and desirable targeting properties, which is a kind of promising PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. Herein, we focus on summarizing recent advances in smart self-assembled nanomaterials with NIR absorption as PA contrast agents for biomedical imaging. According to the preparation strategy of the contrast agents, the self-assembled nanomaterials are categorized into two groups, i.e., the ex situ and in situ self-assembled nanomaterials. The driving forces, assembly modes and regulation of PA properties of self-assembled nanomaterials and their applications for long-term imaging, enzyme activity detection and aggregation-induced retention (AIR) effect for diagnosis and therapy are emphasized. Finally, we conclude with an outlook towards future developments of self-assembled nanomaterials for PA imaging.

  4. Light harvesting: Strike while the iron is cold

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galoppini, Elena

    2015-11-01

    For many years, chemists have tried and failed to find efficient light-harvesting molecules based on Earth-abundant, environmentally friendly iron. Now, an iron complex has been developed with photoluminescent properties that are tuned to efficiently convert light to electrons.

  5. Light-harvesting photocatalysis for water oxidation using mesoporous organosilica.

    PubMed

    Takeda, Hiroyuki; Ohashi, Masataka; Goto, Yasutomo; Ohsuna, Tetsu; Tani, Takao; Inagaki, Shinji

    2014-07-14

    An organic-based photocatalysis system for water oxidation, with visible-light harvesting antennae, was constructed using periodic mesoporous organosilica (PMO). PMO containing acridone groups in the framework (Acd-PMO), a visible-light harvesting antenna, was supported with [Ru(II)(bpy)3(2+)] complex (bpy = 2,2'-bipyridyl) coupled with iridium oxide (IrO(x)) particles in the mesochannels as photosensitizer and catalyst, respectively. Acd-PMO absorbed visible light and funneled the light energy into the Ru complex in the mesochannels through excitation energy transfer. The excited state of Ru complex is oxidatively quenched by a sacrificial oxidant (Na2S2O8) to form Ru(3+) species. The Ru(3+) species extracts an electron from IrO(x) to oxidize water for oxygen production. The reaction quantum yield was 0.34 %, which was improved to 0.68 or 1.2 % by the modifications of PMO. A unique sequence of reactions mimicking natural photosystem II, 1) light-harvesting, 2) charge separation, and 3) oxygen generation, were realized for the first time by using the light-harvesting PMO.

  6. Optimization of Light-Harvesting Pigment Improves Photosynthetic Efficiency.

    PubMed

    Jin, Honglei; Li, Mengshu; Duan, Sujuan; Fu, Mei; Dong, Xiaoxiao; Liu, Bing; Feng, Dongru; Wang, Jinfa; Wang, Hong-Bin

    2016-11-01

    Maximizing light capture by light-harvesting pigment optimization represents an attractive but challenging strategy to improve photosynthetic efficiency. Here, we report that loss of a previously uncharacterized gene, HIGH PHOTOSYNTHETIC EFFICIENCY1 (HPE1), optimizes light-harvesting pigments, leading to improved photosynthetic efficiency and biomass production. Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) hpe1 mutants show faster electron transport and increased contents of carbohydrates. HPE1 encodes a chloroplast protein containing an RNA recognition motif that directly associates with and regulates the splicing of target RNAs of plastid genes. HPE1 also interacts with other plastid RNA-splicing factors, including CAF1 and OTP51, which share common targets with HPE1. Deficiency of HPE1 alters the expression of nucleus-encoded chlorophyll-related genes, probably through plastid-to-nucleus signaling, causing decreased total content of chlorophyll (a+b) in a limited range but increased chlorophyll a/b ratio. Interestingly, this adjustment of light-harvesting pigment reduces antenna size, improves light capture, decreases energy loss, mitigates photodamage, and enhances photosynthetic quantum yield during photosynthesis. Our findings suggest a novel strategy to optimize light-harvesting pigments that improves photosynthetic efficiency and biomass production in higher plants.

  7. Insights from Placing Photosynthetic Light Harvesting into Context.

    PubMed

    Demmig-Adams, Barbara; Stewart, Jared J; Burch, Tyson A; Adams, William W

    2014-08-21

    Solar-energy conversion through natural photosynthesis forms the base of virtually all food chains on Earth and provides fiber, materials, and fuels, as well as inspiration for the design of biomimetic energy-conversion systems. We summarize well-known as well as recently discovered feedback loops between natural light-harvesting systems and whole-organism function in natural settings. We propose that the low effective quantum yield of natural light-harvesting systems in high light is caused by downstream limitations rather than unavoidable intrinsic vulnerabilities. We evaluate potential avenues, and their costs and benefits, for increasing the maximal rate and photon yield of photosynthesis in high light in plants and photosynthetic microbes. By summarizing mechanisms observable only in complex systems (whole plants, algae, or, in some cases, intact leaves), we aim to stimulate future research efforts on reciprocal feedback loops between light harvesting and downstream processes in whole organisms and to provide additional arguments for the significance of research on photosynthetic light harvesting.

  8. Design directed self-assembly of donor-acceptor polymers.

    PubMed

    Marszalek, Tomasz; Li, Mengmeng; Pisula, Wojciech

    2016-09-21

    Donor-acceptor polymers with an alternating array of donor and acceptor moieties have gained particular attention during recent years as active components of organic electronics. By implementation of suitable subunits within the conjugated backbone, these polymers can be made either electron-deficient or -rich. Additionally, their band gap and light absorption can be precisely tuned for improved light-harvesting in solar cells. On the other hand, the polymer design can also be modified to encode the desired supramolecular self-assembly in the solid-state that is essential for an unhindered transport of charge carriers. This review focuses on three major factors playing a role in the assembly of donor-acceptor polymers on surfaces which are (1) nature, geometry and substitution position of solubilizing alkyl side chains, (2) shape of the conjugated polymer defined by the backbone curvature, and (3) molecular weight which determines the conjugation length of the polymer. These factors adjust the fine balance between attractive and repulsive forces and ensure a close polymer packing important for an efficient charge hopping between neighboring chains. On the microscopic scale, an appropriate domain formation with a low density of structural defects in the solution deposited thin film is crucial for the charge transport. The charge carrier transport through such thin films is characterized by field-effect transistors as basic electronic elements.

  9. Photophysical characterization of low-molecular weight organogels for energy transfer and light harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atsbeha, T.; Bussotti, L.; Cicchi, S.; Foggi, P.; Ghini, G.; Lascialfari, L.; Marcelli, A.

    2011-05-01

    The choice of a donor and an acceptor with suitable optical and self-assembly properties is essential in the design of organogel-based light harvesting systems. Organogels can provide supramolecular structures capable of enhancing energy transfer processes. In this work, we present the characterization of N-(naphthalene-1-carboxyamide)-(3 S,4 S)-pyrrolidin-(3,4)-bisdodecyl-carbamoyldiester ( 1) and N-(4-nitrobenzofurazan-7-amino)-(3 S,4 S)-pyrrolidin-(3,4)-bisdodecyl-carbamoyldiester ( 2) which are used as donor and acceptor moieties, respectively. The donor molecule is hardly capable to form a gelon its own but it can be assembled at reasonable concentrations with the acceptor gelator to form a two-component donor-acceptor organogels in cyclohexane. Stable organogels are formed from cyclohexane for gelator concentrations as low as ≈10 -3 M. UV-vis and steady-state fluorescence spectroscopies were used to provide a characterization of their molecular interactions. The optical changes observed during the cooling of two-component solutions of these systems are indicative of typical sol-gel transitions. The occurrence of excitation energy transfer processes in the gels is confirmed by comparison of their excitation and absorption spectra.

  10. Self-Assembly Behavior of Pullulan Abietate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gradwell, Sheila; Esker, Alan; Glasser, Wolgang; Heinze, Thomas

    2003-03-01

    Wood is one of nature's most fascinating biological composites due to its toughness and resistance to fracture properties. These properties stem from the self-assembly of cellulose microfibrils in an amorphous matrix of hemicellulose and lignin. In recent years, science has looked to nature for guidance in preparing synthetic materials with desirable physical properties. In order to study the self-assembly process in wood, a model system composed of a polysaccharide, pullulan abietate, and a biomimetic cellulose substrate prepared by the Langmuir-Blodgett technique has been developed. Interfacial tension and surface plasmon resonance measurements used to study the self-assembly process will be discussed for different pullulan derivatives.

  11. Computational design of protein self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Norn, Christoffer H; André, Ingemar

    2016-08-01

    Protein self-assembly is extensively used in nature to build functional biomolecules and provides a general approach to design molecular complexes with many intriguing applications. Although computational design of protein-protein interfaces remains difficult, much progress has recently been made in de novo design of protein assemblies with cyclic, helical, cubic, internal and lattice symmetries. Here, we discuss some of the underlying biophysical principles of self-assembly that influence the design problem and highlight methodological advances that have made self-assembly design a fruitful area of protein design.

  12. Microscale Self-Assembled Electrical Contacts

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-09-01

    scales. 23 References 1. Morris, C. J.; Stauth, S.A.; Parviz , B.A. Self-assembly for micro and nano scale packaging: steps toward self-packaging...IEEE Trans. Adv. Packag. 2005, 28, 600–611. 2 Stauth, S.; Parviz , B.A. Self-assembled silicon networks on plastic. Proceedings of the 13th Int...Conf. on Solid State Sens. Actuators (Transducers 󈧉), Seoul, Korea, 2005, 964–967. 3. Stauth, S. A;. Parviz , B.A. Self-assembled single

  13. Self-Assembly of Biomolecular Soft Matter

    PubMed Central

    Zha, R. Helen; Palmer, Liam C.; Cui, Honggang; Bitton, Ronit

    2014-01-01

    Self-assembly programmed by molecular structure and guided dynamically by energy dissipation is a ubiquitous phenomenon in biological systems that build functional structures from the nanoscale to macroscopic dimensions. This paper describes examples of one-dimensional self-assembly of peptide amphiphiles and the consequent biological functions that emerge in these systems. We also discuss here hierarchical self-assembly of supramolecular peptide nanostructures and polysaccharides, and some new results are reported on supramolecular crystals formed by highly charged peptide amphiphiles. Reflecting on presentations at this Faraday Discussion, the paper ends with a discussion of some of the future opportunities and challenges of the field. PMID:24611266

  14. Theoretical Study of the Initial Stages of Self-Assembly of a Carboxysome’s Facet

    SciTech Connect

    Mahalik, J. P.; Brown, Kirsten A.; Cheng, Xiaolin

    2016-02-24

    Bacterial microcompartments, BMCs, are organelles that exist within wide variety of bacteria and act as nanofactories. Among the different types of known BMCs, the carboxysome has been studied the most. The carboxysome plays an important role in the light-independent part of the photosynthesis process, where its icosahedral-like proteinaceous shell acts as a membrane that controls the transport of metabolites. Although a structural model exists for the carboxysome shell, it remains largely unknown how the shell proteins self-assemble. Understanding the self-assembly process can provide insights into how the shell affects the carboxysome s function and how it can be modified to create new functionalities, such as artificial nanoreactors and artificial protein membranes. Here, we explain a theoretical framework that employs Monte Carlo simulations with a coarse-grain potential that reproduces well the atomistic potential of mean force; employing this framework, we are able to capture the initial stages of the 2D self-assembly of CcmK2 hexamers, a major protein-shell component of the carboxysome's facet. The simulations reveal that CcmK2 hexamers self-assemble into clusters that resemble what was seen experimentally in 2D layers. Further analysis of the simulation results suggests that the 2D self-assembly of carboxysome s facets is driven by a nucleation growth process, which in turn could play an important role in the hierarchical self- assembly of BMC shells in general.

  15. Theoretical Study of the Initial Stages of Self-Assembly of a Carboxysome’s Facet

    DOE PAGES

    Mahalik, J. P.; Brown, Kirsten A.; Cheng, Xiaolin; ...

    2016-02-24

    Bacterial microcompartments, BMCs, are organelles that exist within wide variety of bacteria and act as nanofactories. Among the different types of known BMCs, the carboxysome has been studied the most. The carboxysome plays an important role in the light-independent part of the photosynthesis process, where its icosahedral-like proteinaceous shell acts as a membrane that controls the transport of metabolites. Although a structural model exists for the carboxysome shell, it remains largely unknown how the shell proteins self-assemble. Understanding the self-assembly process can provide insights into how the shell affects the carboxysome s function and how it can be modified tomore » create new functionalities, such as artificial nanoreactors and artificial protein membranes. Here, we explain a theoretical framework that employs Monte Carlo simulations with a coarse-grain potential that reproduces well the atomistic potential of mean force; employing this framework, we are able to capture the initial stages of the 2D self-assembly of CcmK2 hexamers, a major protein-shell component of the carboxysome's facet. The simulations reveal that CcmK2 hexamers self-assemble into clusters that resemble what was seen experimentally in 2D layers. Further analysis of the simulation results suggests that the 2D self-assembly of carboxysome s facets is driven by a nucleation growth process, which in turn could play an important role in the hierarchical self- assembly of BMC shells in general.« less

  16. Self-assembled Materials for Catalysis

    SciTech Connect

    Zhu, Kake; Wang, Donghai; Liu, Jun

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this review is to highlight developments on self-assembled nanostructured materials (i.e. mesoporous and nanoparticle based materials) and their catalytic applications. Since there are some reviews available for metal-based nanoparticles as catalysts, this review will mainly focus on self-assembled oxide-based catalytic materials. The content includes: (1) Design and synthetic strategy toward self-assembled mesoporous catalysts; (2) Polyoxometalates (POMs) based nanocatalysts; (3) Dendrimers based nanocatalysts; (4) Shaped nanomaterials and catalytic applications. We show that self-assemblies of molecules, crystalline seeds, nano-building blocks into organized mesoscopic structures paved new roads for tailoring porosities of heterogeneous catalysts and catalytic active sites.

  17. Biologically-Based Self-Assembling Hydrogels

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2002-04-01

    UNCLASSIFIED Defense Technical Information Center Compilation Part Notice ADP014396 TITLE: Biologically-Based Self-Assembling Hydrogels DISTRIBUTION...Based Self-Assembling Hydrogels Brandon L. Seal and Alyssa Panitch Department of Bioengineering, Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85287-9709, U.S.A...Factor Xllla substrate were synthesized and conjugated to methacroylated dextran or acrylated poly(ethylene glycol). Peptide-conjugated dextran was added

  18. Self Assembly and Pyroelectric Poling for Organics

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-07-06

    molecular phosphonic acid (PA) self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) have been developed for applications in organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) and graphene...and semiconducting molecular phosphonic acid (PA) self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) have been developed for applications in organic field-effect...appeal for organic semiconductor applications due to their low-cost processing, reduced material quantity needed compared to traditional organic thin

  19. Directed Self-Assembly of Nanodispersions

    SciTech Connect

    Furst, Eric M

    2013-11-15

    Directed self-assembly promises to be the technologically and economically optimal approach to industrial-scale nanotechnology, and will enable the realization of inexpensive, reproducible and active nanostructured materials with tailored photonic, transport and mechanical properties. These new nanomaterials will play a critical role in meeting the 21st century grand challenges of the US, including energy diversity and sustainability, national security and economic competitiveness. The goal of this work was to develop and fundamentally validate methods of directed selfassembly of nanomaterials and nanodispersion processing. The specific aims were: 1. Nanocolloid self-assembly and interactions in AC electric fields. In an effort to reduce the particle sizes used in AC electric field self-assembly to lengthscales, we propose detailed characterizations of field-driven structures and studies of the fundamental underlying particle interactions. We will utilize microscopy and light scattering to assess order-disorder transitions and self-assembled structures under a variety of field and physicochemical conditions. Optical trapping will be used to measure particle interactions. These experiments will be synergetic with calculations of the particle polarizability, enabling us to both validate interactions and predict the order-disorder transition for nanocolloids. 2. Assembly of anisotropic nanocolloids. Particle shape has profound effects on structure and flow behavior of dispersions, and greatly complicates their processing and self-assembly. The methods developed to study the self-assembled structures and underlying particle interactions for dispersions of isotropic nanocolloids will be extended to systems composed of anisotropic particles. This report reviews several key advances that have been made during this project, including, (1) advances in the measurement of particle polarization mechanisms underlying field-directed self-assembly, and (2) progress in the

  20. From Solvolysis to Self-Assembly*

    PubMed Central

    Stang, Peter J.

    2009-01-01

    My sojourn from classical physical-organic chemistry and solvolysis to self-assembly and supramolecular chemistry, over the last forty years, is described. My contributions to unsaturated reactive intermediates, namely vinyl cations and unsaturated carbenes, along with my decade long involvement with polyvalent iodine chemistry, especially alkynyliodonium salts, as well as my more recent research with metal-ligand, coordination driven and directed self-assembly of finite supramolecular ensembles are discussed. PMID:19111062

  1. Replication of Leaf Surface Structures for Light Harvesting.

    PubMed

    Huang, Zhongjia; Yang, Sai; Zhang, Hui; Zhang, Meng; Cao, Wei

    2015-09-18

    As one of the most important hosts of natural light harvesting, foliage normally has complicated surface structures to capture solar radiances. Bio-mimicking leaf surface structures can provide novel designs of covers in photovoltaic systems. In this article, we reported on replicating leaf surface structures on poly-(methyl methacrylate) polymers to prompt harvesting efficiencies. Prepared via a double transfer process, the polymers were found to have high optical transparencies and transmission hazes, with both values exceeding 80% in some species. Benefiting from optical properties and wrinkled surfaces, the biomimetic polymers brought up to 17% gains to photovoltaic efficiencies. Through Monte-Carlo simulations of light transport, ultrahigh haze values and low reflections were attributed to lightwave guidance schemes lead by the nano- and micro-morphologies which are inherited from master leaves. Thus, leaf surface bio-mimicking can be considered as a strategic direction to design covers of light harvesting systems.

  2. Replication of Leaf Surface Structures for Light Harvesting

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Zhongjia; Yang, Sai; Zhang, Hui; Zhang, Meng; Cao, Wei

    2015-01-01

    As one of the most important hosts of natural light harvesting, foliage normally has complicated surface structures to capture solar radiances. Bio-mimicking leaf surface structures can provide novel designs of covers in photovoltaic systems. In this article, we reported on replicating leaf surface structures on poly-(methyl methacrylate) polymers to prompt harvesting efficiencies. Prepared via a double transfer process, the polymers were found to have high optical transparencies and transmission hazes, with both values exceeding 80% in some species. Benefiting from optical properties and wrinkled surfaces, the biomimetic polymers brought up to 17% gains to photovoltaic efficiencies. Through Monte-Carlo simulations of light transport, ultrahigh haze values and low reflections were attributed to lightwave guidance schemes lead by the nano- and micro-morphologies which are inherited from master leaves. Thus, leaf surface bio-mimicking can be considered as a strategic direction to design covers of light harvesting systems. PMID:26381702

  3. Fluctuating Two-State Light Harvesting in a Photosynthetic Membrane

    SciTech Connect

    Pan, Duohai; Hu, Dehong; Liu, Ruchuan; Zeng, Xiaohua; Kaplan, Samuel; Lu, H. Peter

    2007-06-28

    How light is converted into chemical energy in a natural photosynthetic system is of great interest in energy sciences. Using single-molecule and single-vesicle fluorescence spectroscopy and imaging, we have observed fluctuating inter-molecular protein energy transfers in the photosynthetic membranes of R. sphaeroides. Our results suggest that there are dynamic coupled and non-coupled states in the light-harvesting protein assembly.

  4. Electronic instabilities in self-assembled atom wires

    SciTech Connect

    Snijders, Paul C; Weitering, Harm H

    2010-01-01

    Low dimensional systems have fascinated physicists for a long time due to their unusual properties such as charge fractionalization, semionic statistics, and Luttinger liquid behavior among others. In nature, however, low dimensional systems often suffer from thermal fluctuations that can make these systems structurally unstable. Human beings, however, can trick nature by producing artificial structures which are not naturally produced. This Colloquium reviews the problem of self-assembled atomic wires on solid surfaces from an experimental and theoretical point of view. These materials represent a class of one-dimensional systems with very unusual properties that can open doors to the study of exotic physics that cannot be studied otherwise.

  5. Early events in the biosynthesis and assembly of the cyanobacterial light-harvesting system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Lamont

    1996-02-01

    The cyanobacteria are photosynthetic procaryotes that employ a mechanism of photosynthesis which is essentially identical to the systems found in plant chloroplasts and the eukaryotic green algae. Cyanobacteria can drive photosynthesis with light energy from a broad region of the visible spectrum (500 - 650 nm wavelength) that is not available to plants and green algae, which are limited to the narrow band of light energy that is absorbed by chlorophyll (660-680 nm). The light-harvesting capacity of the cyanobacteria is a function of a complex protein structure that resides on the surface of the photosynthetic membrane in contact with the PSII chlorophyll reaction centers. This light-harvesting complex is called a phycobilisome and functions as a protein scaffold for a rigid array of chromophores that absorbs light energy and transfers it to chlorophyll. The chromophores are linear tetrapyrroles (the bilins) that are covalently attached to the biliproteins, which comprise 80 - 85% of the total phycobilisome mass. There are three major classes of spectrally distinct biliproteins [phycoerythrin (PE), (lambda) max equals 565 nm; phycocyanin (PC), (lambda) max equals 617 nm; and allophycocyanin (AP), (lambda) max equals 650 nm] and their spatial organization within the phycobilisome creates an array of donor and acceptor chromophores that is optimized for resonance energy transfer to chlorophyll on a picosecond timescale and at close to 100% efficiency. The cyanobacteria can exert control over the biliprotein composition of the phycobilisomes in response to both light quality and light quantity, and they do so primarily by light-responsive transcription control mechanisms. The biosynthesis and assembly of a phycobilisome is an interesting example of self-assembly in a complex protein system. A phycobilisome from Synechocystis sp. strain 6701 can contain 400 proteins derived from a repertoire of 16 different polypeptides that includes the (alpha) and (beta) subunits for

  6. Self-assembly in nature: using the principles of nature to create complex nanobiomaterials.

    PubMed

    Mendes, Ana C; Baran, Erkan T; Reis, Rui L; Azevedo, Helena S

    2013-01-01

    Self-assembly is a ubiquitous process in biology where it plays numerous important roles and underlies the formation of a wide variety of complex biological structures. Over the past two decades, materials scientists have aspired to exploit nature's assembly principles to create artificial materials, with hierarchical structures and tailored properties, for the fabrication of functional devices. Toward this goal, both biological and synthetic building blocks have been subject of extensive research in self-assembly. In fact, molecular self-assembly is becoming increasingly important for the fabrication of biomaterials because it offers a great platform for constructing materials with high level of precision and complexity, integrating order and dynamics, to achieve functions such as stimuli-responsiveness, adaptation, recognition, transport, and catalysis. The importance of peptide self-assembling building blocks has been recognized in the last years, as demonstrated by the literature available on the topic. The simple structure of peptides, as well as their facile synthesis, makes peptides an excellent family of structural units for the bottom-up fabrication of complex nanobiomaterials. Additionally, peptides offer a great diversity of biochemical (specificity, intrinsic bioactivity, biodegradability) and physical (small size, conformation) properties to form self-assembled structures with different molecular configurations. The motivation of this review is to provide an overview on the design principles for peptide self-assembly and to illustrate how these principles have been applied to manipulate their self-assembly across the scales. Applications of self-assembling peptides as nanobiomaterials, including carriers for drug delivery, hydrogels for cell culture and tissue repair are also described.

  7. Directed self-assembly of performance materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nealey, Paul

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) is a promising strategy for high-volume cost-effective manufacturing at the nanoscale. Over the past decades, manufacturing techniques have been developed with such remarkable efficiency that it is now possible to engineer complex systems of heterogeneous materials at the scale of a few tens of nanometers. Further evolution of these techniques, however, is faced with difficult challenges not only in feasibility of implementation at scales of 10 nm and below, but also in prohibitively high capital equipment costs. Materials that self-assemble, on the other hand, spontaneously form structures at the mesoscale, but the micrometer areas or volumes over which the materials self-assemble with adequate perfection in structure is incommensurate with the macroscopic dimensions of working devices and systems of devices of industrial relevance. Directed Self-Assembly (DSA) refers to the integration of self-assembling materials with traditional manufacturing processes. Here we will discuss DSA of block copolymers to revolutionize sub 10 nm lithography and the manufacture of integrated circuits and storage media, DSA of ex-situ synthesized nanoparticles for applications in nanophotonics, and DSA of liquid crystals for advanced optics.

  8. Self-assembly of nanocomposite materials

    DOEpatents

    Brinker, C. Jeffrey; Sellinger, Alan; Lu, Yunfeng

    2001-01-01

    A method of making a nanocomposite self-assembly is provided where at least one hydrophilic compound, at least one hydrophobic compound, and at least one amphiphilic surfactant are mixed in an aqueous solvent with the solvent subsequently evaporated to form a self-assembled liquid crystalline mesophase material. Upon polymerization of the hydrophilic and hydrophobic compounds, a robust nanocomposite self-assembled material is formed. Importantly, in the reaction mixture, the amphiphilic surfactant has an initial concentration below the critical micelle concentration to allow formation of the liquid-phase micellar mesophase material. A variety of nanocomposite structures can be formed, depending upon the solvent evaporazation process, including layered mesophases, tubular mesophases, and a hierarchical composite coating composed of an isotropic worm-like micellar overlayer bonded to an oriented, nanolaminated underlayer.

  9. S-Layer Protein Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Pum, Dietmar; Toca-Herrera, Jose Luis; Sleytr, Uwe B.

    2013-01-01

    Crystalline S(urface)-layers are the most commonly observed cell surface structures in prokaryotic organisms (bacteria and archaea). S-layers are highly porous protein meshworks with unit cell sizes in the range of 3 to 30 nm, and thicknesses of ~10 nm. One of the key features of S-layer proteins is their intrinsic capability to form self-assembled mono- or double layers in solution, and at interfaces. Basic research on S-layer proteins laid foundation to make use of the unique self-assembly properties of native and, in particular, genetically functionalized S-layer protein lattices, in a broad range of applications in the life and non-life sciences. This contribution briefly summarizes the knowledge about structure, genetics, chemistry, morphogenesis, and function of S-layer proteins and pays particular attention to the self-assembly in solution, and at differently functionalized solid supports. PMID:23354479

  10. Theory of Programmable Hierarchic Self-Assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkachenko, Alexei V.

    2011-06-01

    We present a theoretical analysis of the inverse problem in self-assembly. A particular scheme is proposed for building an arbitrary desired nanostructure out of self-assembled building blocks (“octopus” nanoparticles). The conditions for robust self-assembly of the target structure are identified. This includes the minimal number of “colors” needed to encode interparticle bonds, which are to be implemented as pairs of complementary DNA sequences. As a part of this analysis, it is demonstrated that a floppy network with thermal fluctuations, in a certain range of coordination numbers ⟨Z⟩, possesses entropic rigidity and can be described as a traditional elastic solid. The onset of the entropic rigidity, ⟨Z⟩=d+1, determines the minimal number of bond types per particle needed to encode the desired structure. Thermodynamic considerations give additional conditions for the implementation of this scheme.

  11. Self-assembly of lead chalcogenide nanocrystals.

    PubMed

    Quan, Zewei; Valentin-Bromberg, Loriana; Loc, Welley Siu; Fang, Jiye

    2011-05-02

    This review focuses on recent developments in the self-assembly of lead chalcogenide nanocrystals into two- and three-dimensional superstructures. Self-assembly is categorized by the shapes of building blocks, including nanospheres, nanocubes, nano-octahedra, and nanostars. In the section on nanospheres, rapid assemblies of lead chalcogenide-based multicomponent nanocrystals with additional components, such as semiconductors, noble metals, and magnetic nanocrystals, are further highlighted. In situ self-assembly of lead chalcogenide nanocrystals into one-dimensional nanostructures at elevated temperatures is also covered. Each section of this paper highlights examples extracted from recent publications. Finally, relatively novel properties and applications arising from lead chalcogenide superlattices as typical examples are also discussed.

  12. Role of Ions in the Regulation of Light-Harvesting

    PubMed Central

    Kaňa, Radek; Govindjee

    2016-01-01

    Regulation of photosynthetic light harvesting in the thylakoids is one of the major key factors affecting the efficiency of photosynthesis. Thylakoid membrane is negatively charged and influences both the structure and the function of the primarily photosynthetic reactions through its electrical double layer (EDL). Further, there is a heterogeneous organization of soluble ions (K+, Mg2+, Cl−) attached to the thylakoid membrane that, together with fixed charges (negatively charged amino acids, lipids), provides an electrical field. The EDL is affected by the valence of the ions and interferes with the regulation of “state transitions,” protein interactions, and excitation energy “spillover” from Photosystem II to Photosystem I. These effects are reflected in changes in the intensity of chlorophyll a fluorescence, which is also a measure of photoprotective non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) of the excited state of chlorophyll a. A triggering of NPQ proceeds via lumen acidification that is coupled to the export of positive counter-ions (Mg2+, K+) to the stroma or/and negative ions (e.g., Cl−) into the lumen. The effect of protons and anions in the lumen and of the cations (Mg2+, K+) in the stroma are, thus, functionally tightly interconnected. In this review, we discuss the consequences of the model of EDL, proposed by Barber (1980b) Biochim Biophys Acta 594:253–308) in light of light-harvesting regulation. Further, we explain differences between electrostatic screening and neutralization, and we emphasize the opposite effect of monovalent (K+) and divalent (Mg2+) ions on light-harvesting and on “screening” of the negative charges on the thylakoid membrane; this effect needs to be incorporated in all future models of photosynthetic regulation by ion channels and transporters. PMID:28018387

  13. Theory of three-dimensional nanocrescent light harvesters.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Domínguez, Antonio I; Luo, Yu; Wiener, Aeneas; Pendry, J B; Maier, Stefan A

    2012-11-14

    The optical properties of three-dimensional crescent-shaped gold nanoparticles are studied using a transformation optics methodology. The polarization insensitive, highly efficient, and tunable light harvesting ability of singular nanocrescents is demonstrated. We extend our approach to more realistic blunt nanostructures, showing the robustness of their plasmonic performance against geometric imperfections. Finally, we provide analytical and numerical insights into the sensitivity of the device to radiative losses and nonlocal effects. Our theoretical findings reveal an underlying relation between structural bluntness and spatial dispersion in this particular nanoparticle configuration.

  14. Carotenoid cation formation and the regulation of photosynthetic light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Holt, Nancy E; Zigmantas, Donatas; Valkunas, Leonas; Li, Xiao-Ping; Niyogi, Krishna K; Fleming, Graham R

    2005-01-21

    Photosynthetic light harvesting in excess light is regulated by a process known as feedback deexcitation. Femtosecond transient absorption measurements on thylakoid membranes show selective formation of a carotenoid radical cation upon excitation of chlorophyll under conditions of maximum, steady-state feedback deexcitation. Studies on transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana plants confirmed that this carotenoid radical cation formation is correlated with feedback deexcitation and requires the presence of zeaxanthin, the specific carotenoid synthesized during high light exposure. These results indicate that energy transfer from chlorophyll molecules to a chlorophyllzeaxanthin heterodimer, which then undergoes charge separation, is the mechanism for excess energy dissipation during feedback deexcitation.

  15. Molecular factors controlling photosynthetic light harvesting by carotenoids.

    PubMed

    Polívka, Tomás; Frank, Harry A

    2010-08-17

    Carotenoids are naturally occurring pigments that absorb light in the spectral region in which the sun irradiates maximally. These molecules transfer this energy to chlorophylls, initiating the primary photochemical events of photosynthesis. Carotenoids also regulate the flow of energy within the photosynthetic apparatus and protect it from photoinduced damage caused by excess light absorption. To carry out these functions in nature, carotenoids are bound in discrete pigment-protein complexes in the proximity of chlorophylls. A few three-dimensional structures of these carotenoid complexes have been determined by X-ray crystallography. Thus, the stage is set for attempting to correlate the structural information with the spectroscopic properties of carotenoids to understand the molecular mechanism(s) of their function in photosynthetic systems. In this Account, we summarize current spectroscopic data describing the excited state energies and ultrafast dynamics of purified carotenoids in solution and bound in light-harvesting complexes from purple bacteria, marine algae, and green plants. Many of these complexes can be modified using mutagenesis or pigment exchange which facilitates the elucidation of correlations between structure and function. We describe the structural and electronic factors controlling the function of carotenoids as energy donors. We also discuss unresolved issues related to the nature of spectroscopically dark excited states, which could play a role in light harvesting. To illustrate the interplay between structural determinations and spectroscopic investigations that exemplifies work in the field, we describe the spectroscopic properties of four light-harvesting complexes whose structures have been determined to atomic resolution. The first, the LH2 complex from the purple bacterium Rhodopseudomonas acidophila, contains the carotenoid rhodopin glucoside. The second is the LHCII trimeric complex from higher plants which uses the carotenoids

  16. Electronic coherence and the kinetics of energy transfer in light-harvesting systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huo, Pengfei; Coker, David; Miller, Thomas

    Recent 2D-spectroscopy experiments have observed transient electronic coherence in natural and artificial light harvesting systems, which raises questions about the role of electronic coherence in facilitating excitation energy transfer (EET) processes. In this talk, we introduce the recently developed partial linearized path-integral (PLPI) method, which can accurately simulate exciton transfer dynamics across multiple reaction regimes, as well as reliably describe the electronic coherence among excitonic states. Further, we develop a strategy that enables the analysis of the relative impact of static and dynamic electronic coherence. With PLPI simulations, we find that energy transfer dynamics are almost entirely dominated by static coherence effects; dynamic coherence is found to cause only minor effects. These conclusions are consistent with the historical view that emphasizes the importance of energy-level alignment for efficient incoherent energy transfer,while suggesting a less important role for more exotic electronic coherence effects that have been recently emphasized.

  17. 3D self-assembly of aluminium nanoparticles for plasmon-enhanced solar desalination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Lin; Tan, Yingling; Wang, Jingyang; Xu, Weichao; Yuan, Ye; Cai, Wenshan; Zhu, Shining; Zhu, Jia

    2016-06-01

    Plasmonics has generated tremendous excitement because of its unique capability to focus light into subwavelength volumes, beneficial for various applications such as light harvesting, photodetection, sensing, catalysis and so on. Here we demonstrate a plasmon-enhanced solar desalination device, fabricated by the self-assembly of aluminium nanoparticles into a three-dimensional porous membrane. The formed porous plasmonic absorber can float naturally on water surface, efficiently absorb a broad solar spectrum (>96%) and focus the absorbed energy at the surface of the water to enable efficient (˜90%) and effective desalination (a decrease of four orders of magnitude). The durability of the devices has also been examined, indicating a stable performance over 25 cycles under various illumination conditions. The combination of the significant desalination effect, the abundance and low cost of the materials, and the scalable production processes suggest that this type of plasmon-enhanced solar desalination device could provide a portable desalination solution.

  18. Self-assembly of chlorophenols in water

    PubMed Central

    Rogalska, Ewa; Rogalski, Marek; Gulik-Krzywicki, Tadeusz; Gulik, Annette; Chipot, Christophe

    1999-01-01

    In saturated solutions of some di- and trichlorophenols, structures with complex morphologies, consisting of thin, transparent sheets often coiling into helices and ultimately twisting into filaments, were observed under the optical microscope. Freeze-fracture electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, phase diagrams, and molecular modeling were performed to elucidate the observed phenomena. Here, we present evidence that the chlorophenols studied, when interacting with water, self-assemble into bilayers. The fact that some chlorophenols form the same supramolecular structures as those described previously for structurally nonrelated surfactants sheds light on the mechanisms of self-assembly. PMID:10359753

  19. Self-assembling segmented coiled tubing

    DOEpatents

    Raymond, David W.

    2016-09-27

    Self-assembling segmented coiled tubing is a concept that allows the strength of thick-wall rigid pipe, and the flexibility of thin-wall tubing, to be realized in a single design. The primary use is for a drillstring tubular, but it has potential for other applications requiring transmission of mechanical loads (forces and torques) through an initially coiled tubular. The concept uses a spring-loaded spherical `ball-and-socket` type joint to interconnect two or more short, rigid segments of pipe. Use of an optional snap ring allows the joint to be permanently made, in a `self-assembling` manner.

  20. Remote control of self-assembled microswimmers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grosjean, G.; Lagubeau, G.; Darras, A.; Hubert, M.; Lumay, G.; Vandewalle, N.

    2015-11-01

    Physics governing the locomotion of microorganisms and other microsystems is dominated by viscous damping. An effective swimming strategy involves the non-reciprocal and periodic deformations of the considered body. Here, we show that a magnetocapillary-driven self-assembly, composed of three soft ferromagnetic beads, is able to swim along a liquid-air interface when powered by an external magnetic field. More importantly, we demonstrate that trajectories can be fully controlled, opening ways to explore low Reynolds number swimming. This magnetocapillary system spontaneously forms by self-assembly, allowing miniaturization and other possible applications such as cargo transport or solvent flows.

  1. Self-assembly of small peptidomimetic cyclophanes.

    PubMed

    Becerril, Jorge; Burguete, M Isabel; Escuder, Beatriu; Galindo, Francisco; Gavara, Raquel; Miravet, Juan F; Luis, Santiago V; Peris, Gabriel

    2004-08-20

    The self-assembly of a series of small peptidomimetic cyclophanes in organic solvents was studied. X-ray diffraction, NMR spectroscopy, and molecular modelling were used to understand the structural features of these self-assembling compounds both at the molecular and supramolecular level. The factors that could influence the formation of gels rather than crystals were studied and a model for the arrangement of molecules in the gel was proposed. Furthermore, scanning electron microscopy revealed that in some cases these compounds undergo a transcription of chirality when going from organogelator to helicoidal gel fibres.

  2. Remote control of self-assembled microswimmers

    PubMed Central

    Grosjean, G.; Lagubeau, G.; Darras, A.; Hubert, M.; Lumay, G.; Vandewalle, N.

    2015-01-01

    Physics governing the locomotion of microorganisms and other microsystems is dominated by viscous damping. An effective swimming strategy involves the non-reciprocal and periodic deformations of the considered body. Here, we show that a magnetocapillary-driven self-assembly, composed of three soft ferromagnetic beads, is able to swim along a liquid-air interface when powered by an external magnetic field. More importantly, we demonstrate that trajectories can be fully controlled, opening ways to explore low Reynolds number swimming. This magnetocapillary system spontaneously forms by self-assembly, allowing miniaturization and other possible applications such as cargo transport or solvent flows. PMID:26538006

  3. Computing by molecular self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Jonoska, Nataša; Seeman, Nadrian C

    2012-08-06

    The paper reviews two computing models by DNA self-assembly whose proof of principal have recently been experimentally confirmed. The first model incorporates DNA nano-devices and triple crossover DNA molecules to algorithmically arrange non-DNA species. This is achieved by simulating a finite-state automaton with output where golden nanoparticles are assembled to read-out the result. In the second model, a complex DNA molecule representing a graph emerges as a solution of a computational problem. This supports the idea that in molecular self-assembly computing, it may be necessary to develop the notion of shape processing besides the classical approach through symbol processing.

  4. Nondeterministic self-assembly with asymmetric interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tesoro, S.; Göpfrich, K.; Kartanas, T.; Keyser, U. F.; Ahnert, S. E.

    2016-08-01

    We investigate general properties of nondeterministic self-assembly with asymmetric interactions, using a computational model and DNA tile assembly experiments. By contrasting symmetric and asymmetric interactions we show that the latter can lead to self-limiting cluster growth. Furthermore, by adjusting the relative abundance of self-assembly particles in a two-particle mixture, we are able to tune the final sizes of these clusters. We show that this is a fundamental property of asymmetric interactions, which has potential applications in bioengineering, and provides insights into the study of diseases caused by protein aggregation.

  5. Manipulating Excited-State Dynamics of Individual Light-Harvesting Chromophores through Restricted Motions in a Hydrated Nanoscale Protein Cavity.

    PubMed

    Noriega, Rodrigo; Finley, Daniel T; Haberstroh, John; Geissler, Phillip L; Francis, Matthew B; Ginsberg, Naomi S

    2015-06-11

    Manipulating the photophysical properties of light-absorbing units is a crucial element in the design of biomimetic light-harvesting systems. Using a highly tunable synthetic platform combined with transient absorption and time-resolved fluorescence measurements and molecular dynamics simulations, we interrogate isolated chromophores covalently linked to different positions in the interior of the hydrated nanoscale cavity of a supramolecular protein assembly. We find that, following photoexcitation, the time scales over which these chromophores are solvated, undergo conformational rearrangements, and return to the ground state are highly sensitive to their position within this cavity and are significantly slower than in a bulk aqueous solution. Molecular dynamics simulations reveal the hindered translations and rotations of water molecules within the protein cavity with spatial specificity. The results presented herein show that fully hydrated nanoscale protein cavities are a promising way to mimic the tight protein pockets found in natural light-harvesting complexes. We also show that the interplay between protein, solvent, and chromophores can be used to substantially tune the relaxation processes within artificial light-harvesting assemblies in order to significantly improve the yield of interchromophore energy transfer and extend the range of excitation transport. Our observations have implications for other important, similarly sized bioinspired materials, such as nanoreactors and biocompatible targeted delivery agents.

  6. Molecular and Interfacial Calculations of Iron(II) Light Harvesters.

    PubMed

    Fredin, Lisa A; Wärnmark, Kenneth; Sundström, Villy; Persson, Petter

    2016-04-07

    Iron-carbene complexes show considerable promise as earth-abundant light-harvesters, and adsorption onto nanostructured TiO2 is a crucial step for developing solar energy applications. Intrinsic electron injection capabilities of such promising Fe(II) N-heterocyclic complexes (Fe-NHC) to TiO2 are calculated here, and found to correlate well with recent experimental findings of highly efficient interfacial injection. First, we examine the special bonding characteristics of Fe-NHC light harvesters. The excited-state surfaces are examined using density functional theory (DFT) and time-dependent DFT (TD-DFT) to explore relaxed excited-state properties. Finally, by relaxing an Fe-NHC adsorbed on a TiO2 nanocluster, we show favorable injection properties in terms of interfacial energy level alignment and electronic coupling suitable for efficient electron injection of excited electrons from the Fe complex into the TiO2 conduction band on ∼100 fs time scales.

  7. Green grasses as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells.

    PubMed

    Shanmugam, Vinoth; Manoharan, Subbaiah; Sharafali, A; Anandan, Sambandam; Murugan, Ramaswamy

    2015-01-25

    Chlorophylls, the major pigments presented in plants are responsible for the process of photosynthesis. The working principle of dye sensitized solar cell (DSSC) is analogous to natural photosynthesis in light-harvesting and charge separation. In a similar way, natural dyes extracted from three types of grasses viz. Hierochloe Odorata (HO), Torulinium Odoratum (TO) and Dactyloctenium Aegyptium (DA) were used as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The UV-Vis absorption spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR), and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) were used to characterize the dyes. The electron transport mechanism and internal resistance of the DSSCs were investigated by the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The performance of the cells fabricated with the grass extract shows comparable efficiencies with the reported natural dyes. Among the three types of grasses, the DSSC fabricated with the dye extracted from Hierochloe Odorata (HO) exhibited the maximum efficiency. LC-MS investigations indicated that the dominant pigment present in HO dye was pheophytin a (Pheo a).

  8. Regulation of photosystem I light harvesting by zeaxanthin

    PubMed Central

    Ballottari, Matteo; Alcocer, Marcelo J. P.; D’Andrea, Cosimo; Viola, Daniele; Ahn, Tae Kyu; Petrozza, Annamaria; Polli, Dario; Fleming, Graham R.; Cerullo, Giulio; Bassi, Roberto

    2014-01-01

    In oxygenic photosynthetic eukaryotes, the hydroxylated carotenoid zeaxanthin is produced from preexisting violaxanthin upon exposure to excess light conditions. Zeaxanthin binding to components of the photosystem II (PSII) antenna system has been investigated thoroughly and shown to help in the dissipation of excess chlorophyll-excited states and scavenging of oxygen radicals. However, the functional consequences of the accumulation of the light-harvesting complex I (LHCI) proteins in the photosystem I (PSI) antenna have remained unclarified so far. In this work we investigated the effect of zeaxanthin binding on photoprotection of PSI–LHCI by comparing preparations isolated from wild-type Arabidopsis thaliana (i.e., with violaxanthin) and those isolated from the A. thaliana nonphotochemical quenching 2 mutant, in which violaxanthin is replaced by zeaxanthin. Time-resolved fluorescence measurements showed that zeaxanthin binding leads to a previously unrecognized quenching effect on PSI–LHCI fluorescence. The efficiency of energy transfer from the LHCI moiety of the complex to the PSI reaction center was down-regulated, and an enhanced PSI resistance to photoinhibition was observed both in vitro and in vivo. Thus, zeaxanthin was shown to be effective in inducing dissipative states in PSI, similar to its well-known effect on PSII. We propose that, upon acclimation to high light, PSI–LHCI changes its light-harvesting efficiency by a zeaxanthin-dependent quenching of the absorbed excitation energy, whereas in PSII the stoichiometry of LHC antenna proteins per reaction center is reduced directly. PMID:24872450

  9. Green grasses as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shanmugam, Vinoth; Manoharan, Subbaiah; Sharafali, A.; Anandan, Sambandam; Murugan, Ramaswamy

    2015-01-01

    Chlorophylls, the major pigments presented in plants are responsible for the process of photosynthesis. The working principle of dye sensitized solar cell (DSSC) is analogous to natural photosynthesis in light-harvesting and charge separation. In a similar way, natural dyes extracted from three types of grasses viz. Hierochloe Odorata (HO), Torulinium Odoratum (TO) and Dactyloctenium Aegyptium (DA) were used as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The UV-Vis absorption spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR), and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) were used to characterize the dyes. The electron transport mechanism and internal resistance of the DSSCs were investigated by the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The performance of the cells fabricated with the grass extract shows comparable efficiencies with the reported natural dyes. Among the three types of grasses, the DSSC fabricated with the dye extracted from Hierochloe Odorata (HO) exhibited the maximum efficiency. LC-MS investigations indicated that the dominant pigment present in HO dye was pheophytin a (Pheo a).

  10. Ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes

    PubMed Central

    Malý, Pavel; Gruber, J. Michael; Cogdell, Richard J.; Mančal, Tomáš; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-01-01

    Energy relaxation in light-harvesting complexes has been extensively studied by various ultrafast spectroscopic techniques, the fastest processes being in the sub–100-fs range. At the same time, much slower dynamics have been observed in individual complexes by single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy (SMS). In this work, we use a pump–probe-type SMS technique to observe the ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes LH2 of purple bacteria. After excitation at 800 nm, the measured relaxation time distribution of multiple complexes has a peak at 95 fs and is asymmetric, with a tail at slower relaxation times. When tuning the excitation wavelength, the distribution changes in both its shape and position. The observed behavior agrees with what is to be expected from the LH2 excited states structure. As we show by a Redfield theory calculation of the relaxation times, the distribution shape corresponds to the expected effect of Gaussian disorder of the pigment transition energies. By repeatedly measuring few individual complexes for minutes, we find that complexes sample the relaxation time distribution on a timescale of seconds. Furthermore, by comparing the distribution from a single long-lived complex with the whole ensemble, we demonstrate that, regarding the relaxation times, the ensemble can be considered ergodic. Our findings thus agree with the commonly used notion of an ensemble of identical LH2 complexes experiencing slow random fluctuations. PMID:26903650

  11. Self-assembling materials for therapeutic delivery✩

    PubMed Central

    Branco, Monica C.; Schneider, Joel P.

    2009-01-01

    A growing number of medications must be administered through parenteral delivery, i.e., intravenous, intramuscular, or subcutaneous injection, to ensure effectiveness of the therapeutic. For some therapeutics, the use of delivery vehicles in conjunction with this delivery mechanism can improve drug efficacy and patient compliance. Macromolecular self-assembly has been exploited recently to engineer materials for the encapsulation and controlled delivery of therapeutics. Self-assembled materials offer the advantages of conventional crosslinked materials normally used for release, but also provide the ability to tailor specific bulk material properties, such as release profiles, at the molecular level via monomer design. As a result, the design of materials from the “bottom up” approach has generated a variety of supramolecular devices for biomedical applications. This review provides an overview of self-assembling molecules, their resultant structures, and their use in therapeutic delivery. It highlights the current progress in the design of polymer- and peptide-based self-assembled materials. PMID:19010748

  12. Self-assembly micro optical filter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ping (Cerina); Le, Kevin; Malalur-Nagaraja-Rao, Smitha; Hsu, Lun-Chen; Chiao, J.-C.

    2006-01-01

    Optical communication and sensor industry face critical challenges in manufacturing for system integration. Due to the assembly complexity and integration platform variety, micro optical components require costly alignment and assembly procedures, in which many required manual efforts. Consequently, self-assembly device architectures have become a great interest and could provide major advantages over the conventional optical devices. In this paper, we discussed a self-assembly integration platform for micro optical components. To demonstrate the adaptability and flexibility of the proposed optical device architectures, we chose a commercially available MEMS fabrication foundry service - MUMPs (Multi-User MEMS Process). In this work, polysilicon layers of MUMPS are used as the 3-D structural material for construction of micro component framework and actuators. However, because the polysilicon has high absorption in the visible and near infrared wavelength ranges, it is not suitable for optical interaction. To demonstrate the required optical performance, hybrid integration of materials was proposed and implemented. Organic compound materials were applied on the silicon-based framework to form the required optical interfaces. Organic compounds provide good optical transparency, flexibility to form filters or lens and inexpensive manufacturing procedures. In this paper, we have demonstrated a micro optical filter integrated with self-assembly structures. We will discuss the self-assembly mechanism, optical filter designs, fabrication issues and results.

  13. Inertially assisted nanoscale self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Saeedi, E; Marcheselli, C; Shum, A; Parviz, B A

    2010-09-17

    We present a simple and versatile method for integrating submicron objects onto pre-determined locations on a substrate. The method relies on augmenting inertial forces using centrifugal motion and geometric constraints to guide the placement of submicron objects on a substrate with minimal requirements for surface engineering and binding chemistries. Here, we demonstrate the utility of the method for placing gold particles, metal nanorods and inorganic nanocrystals. The method has demonstrated high yield of self-assembly for submicron particles with a variety of shapes and sizes. We have been able to get a near-perfect yield for filling hundreds of traps with nanoparticles in only 20 min. Two hundred nanometer diameter nanorods were self-assembled into an array of 256 traps on the template with 92% yield. 1.4 microm and 300 nm sodium chloride crystals were self-assembled in arrays of 7000 and 576 traps, respectively, with near-perfect yield in filling each site. Due to its convenient set-up and high performance, inertially assisted self-assembly can be easily adopted and used for a variety of integration needs on the submicron scale.

  14. Large branched self-assembled DNA complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tosch, Paul; Wälti, Christoph; Middelberg, Anton P. J.; Davies, A. Giles

    2007-04-01

    Many biological molecules have been demonstrated to self-assemble into complex structures and networks by using their very efficient and selective molecular recognition processes. The use of biological molecules as scaffolds for the construction of functional devices by self-assembling nanoscale complexes onto the scaffolds has recently attracted significant attention and many different applications in this field have emerged. In particular DNA, owing to its inherent sophisticated self-organization and molecular recognition properties, has served widely as a scaffold for various nanotechnological self-assembly applications, with metallic and semiconducting nanoparticles, proteins, macromolecular complexes, inter alia, being assembled onto designed DNA scaffolds. Such scaffolds may typically contain multiple branch-points and comprise a number of DNA molecules selfassembled into the desired configuration. Previously, several studies have used synthetic methods to produce the constituent DNA of the scaffolds, but this typically constrains the size of the complexes. For applications that require larger self-assembling DNA complexes, several tens of nanometers or more, other techniques need to be employed. In this article, we discuss a generic technique to generate large branched DNA macromolecular complexes.

  15. Inverse Problem in Self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkachenko, Alexei

    2012-02-01

    By decorating colloids and nanoparticles with DNA, one can introduce highly selective key-lock interactions between them. This leads to a new class of systems and problems in soft condensed matter physics. In particular, this opens a possibility to solve inverse problem in self-assembly: how to build an arbitrary desired structure with the bottom-up approach? I will present a theoretical and computational analysis of the hierarchical strategy in attacking this problem. It involves self-assembly of particular building blocks (``octopus particles''), that in turn would assemble into the target structure. On a conceptual level, our approach combines elements of three different brands of programmable self assembly: DNA nanotechnology, nanoparticle-DNA assemblies and patchy colloids. I will discuss the general design principles, theoretical and practical limitations of this approach, and illustrate them with our simulation results. Our crucial result is that not only it is possible to design a system that has a given nanostructure as a ground state, but one can also program and optimize the kinetic pathway for its self-assembly.

  16. Self-assembled nanolaminate coatings (SV)

    SciTech Connect

    Fan, H.

    2012-03-01

    Sandia National Laboratories (Sandia) and Lockheed Martin Aeronautics (LM Aero) are collaborating to develop affordable, self-assembled, nanocomposite coatings and associated fabrication processes that will be tailored to Lockheed Martin product requirements. The purpose of this project is to develop a family of self-assembled coatings with properties tailored to specific performance requirements, such as antireflective (AR) optics, using Sandia-developed self-assembled techniques. The project met its objectives by development of a simple and economic self-assembly processes to fabricate multifunctional coatings. Specifically, materials, functionalization methods, and associated coating processes for single layer and multiple layers coatings have been developed to accomplish high reflective coatings, hydrophobic coatings, and anti-reflective coatings. Associated modeling and simulations have been developed to guide the coating designs for optimum optical performance. The accomplishments result in significant advantages of reduced costs, increased manufacturing freedom/producibility, improved logistics, and the incorporation of new technology solutions not possible with conventional technologies. These self-assembled coatings with tailored properties will significantly address LMC's needs and give LMC a significant competitive lead in new engineered materials. This work complements SNL's LDRD and BES programs aimed at developing multifunctional nanomaterials for microelectronics and optics as well as structure/property investigations of self-assembled nanomaterials. In addition, this project will provide SNL with new opportunities to develop and apply self-assembled nanocomposite optical coatings for use in the wavelength ranges of 3-5 and 8-12 micrometers, ranges of vital importance to military-based sensors and weapons. The SANC technologies will be applied to multiple programs within the LM Company including the F-35, F-22, ADP (Future Strike Bomber, UAV, UCAV

  17. CH3 NH3 PbBr3 Perovskite Nanocrystals as Efficient Light-Harvesting Antenna for Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer.

    PubMed

    Muthu, Chinnadurai; Vijayan, Anuja; Nair, Vijayakumar C

    2017-03-16

    Hybrid perovskites have created enormous research interest as a low-cost material for high-performance photovoltaic devices, light-emitting diodes, photodetectors, memory devices and sensors. Perovskite materials in nanocrystal form that display intense luminescence due to the quantum confinement effect were found to be particularly suitable for most of these applications. However, the potential use of perovskite nanocrystals as a light-harvesting antenna for possible applications in artificial photosynthesis systems is not yet explored. In the present work, we study the light-harvesting antenna properties of luminescent methylammonium lead bromide (CH3 NH3 PbBr3 )-based perovskite nanocrystals using fluorescent dyes (rhodamine B, rhodamine 101, and nile red) as energy acceptors. Our studies revealed that CH3 NH3 PbBr3 nanocrystals are an excellent light-harvesting antenna, and efficient fluorescence resonance energy transfer occurs from the nanocrystals to fluorescent dyes. Further, the energy transfer efficiency is found to be highly dependent on the number of anchoring groups and binding ability of the dyes to the surface of the nanocrystals. These observations may have significant implications for perovskite-based light-harvesting devices and their possible use in artificial photosynthesis systems.

  18. Modeling coherent excitation energy transfer in photosynthetic light harvesting systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huo, Pengfei

    2011-12-01

    Recent non-linear spectroscopy experiments suggest the excitation energy transfer in some biological light harvesting systems initially occurs coherently. Treating such processes brings significant challenge for conventional theoretical tools that usually involve different approximations. In this dissertation, the recently developed Iterative Linearized Density Matrix (ILDM) propagation scheme, which is non-perturbative and non-Markovian is extended to study coherent excitation energy transfer in various light harvesting complexes. It is demonstrated that the ILDM approach can successfully describe the coherent beating of the site populations on model systems and gives quantitative agreement with both experimental results and the results of other theoretical methods have been developed recently to going beyond the usual approximations, thus providing a new reliable theoretical tool to study this phenomenon. This approach is used to investigate the excited energy transfer dynamics in various experimentally studied bacteria light harvesting complexes, such as Fenna-Matthews-Olsen (FMO) complex, Phycocyanin 645 (PC645). In these model calculations, quantitative agreement is found between computed de-coherence times and quantum beating pattens observed in the non-linear spectroscopy. As a result of these studies, it is concluded that the stochastic resonance behavior is important in determining the optimal throughput. To begin addressing possible mechanics for observed long de-coherence time, various models which include correlation between site energy fluctuations as well as correlation between site energy and inter-site coupling are developed. The influence of both types of correlation on the coherence and transfer rate is explored using with a two state system-bath hamiltonian parametrized to model the reaction center of Rhodobacter sphaeroides bacteria. To overcome the disadvantages of a fully reduced approach or a full propagation method, a brownian dynamics

  19. Nanoparticles Self-Assembly Driven by High Affinity Repeat Protein Pairing.

    PubMed

    Gurunatha, Kargal L; Fournier, Agathe C; Urvoas, Agathe; Valerio-Lepiniec, Marie; Marchi, Valérie; Minard, Philippe; Dujardin, Erik

    2016-03-22

    Proteins are the most specific yet versatile biological self-assembling agents with a rich chemistry. Nevertheless, the design of new proteins with recognition capacities is still in its infancy and has seldom been exploited for the self-assembly of functional inorganic nanoparticles. Here, we report on the protein-directed assembly of gold nanoparticles using purpose-designed artificial repeat proteins having a rigid but modular 3D architecture. αRep protein pairs are selected for their high mutual affinity from a library of 10(9) variants. Their conjugation onto gold nanoparticles drives the massive colloidal assembly of free-standing, one-particle thick films. When the average number of proteins per nanoparticle is lowered, the extent of self-assembly is limited to oligomeric particle clusters. Finally, we demonstrate that the aggregates are reversibly disassembled by an excess of one free protein. Our approach could be optimized for applications in biosensing, cell targeting, or functional nanomaterials engineering.

  20. Guided self-assembly of diblock copolymer thin films on chemically patterned substrates.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiang-Fa; Dzenis, Yuris A

    2006-11-07

    We study the guided self-assembly of symmetric/asymmetric diblock copolymer (BCP) films on heterogeneous substrates with chemically patterned surface by using a coarse-grained phase-separation model. During the procedure, the free energy employed for the BCP films was modeled by the Ginzburg-Landau free energy with nonlocal interaction, and the flat, chemically patterned surface was considered as a heterogeneous surface with short-range interaction with the BCP molecules. The resulting Cahn-Hilliard equation was solved by means of an efficient semi-implicit Fourier-spectral algorithm. Effects of pattern scale, surface chemical potential, and BCP asymmetry on the self-assembly process were explored in detail and compared with those without chemically patterned substrate surfaces. It was found that the morphology of both symmetric and asymmetric BCP films is strongly influenced by the commensurability between the unconstrained natural period lambda* of the bulk BCP and the artificial pattern period. Simulation shows that patterned surface with period close to lambda* leads to highly ordered morphology after self-assembly for both symmetric and asymmetric BCP films, and it also dramatically accelerates the guided self-assembly process. The present simulation is in a very good agreement with the recent experimental observation in BCP nanolithography. Finally, the present study also expects an innovative nanomanufacturing method to produce highly ordered nanodots based on the guided self-assembly of asymmetric BCP films on chemically patterned substrates.

  1. Dendrimer light-harvesting: intramolecular electrodynamics and mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Andrews, David L; Bradshaw, David S; Jenkins, Robert D; Rodríguez, Justo

    2009-12-07

    In the development of highly efficient materials for harvesting solar energy, there is an increasing focus on purpose-built dendrimers and allied multi-chromophore systems. A proliferation of antenna chromophores is not the only factor determining the sought light-harvesting efficiency; the internal geometry and photophysics of these molecules are also crucially important. In particular, the mechanisms by means of which radiant energy is ultimately trapped depends on an intricate interplay of electronic, structural, energetic and symmetry properties. To better understand these processes a sound theoretical representation of the intramolecular electrodynamics is required. A suitable formalism, based on quantum electrodynamics, readily delivers physical insights into the necessary excitation channelling processes, and it affords a rigorous basis for modelling the intramolecular flow of energy.

  2. Potential of light-harvesting proton pumps for bioenergy applications.

    PubMed

    Walter, Jessica M; Greenfield, Derek; Liphardt, Jan

    2010-06-01

    Concerns about the security and longevity of traditional energy sources have increased interest in alternative methods of energy production, particularly those which utilize abundantly available solar energy. Solar energy can be harvested either indirectly through the conversion of plant or algal byproducts into biofuels or directly using engineered microorganisms. Here we summarize the main features of light-harvesting proton pumps, which may provide a relatively simple way to boost the efficiency of energy-limited biological processes in fuel production. This family of proton pumps, which includes bacteriorhodopsin and proteorhodopsin, directly uses light energy to create a proton motive force (pmf) which can be used by other enzymes to facilitate active transport, regulate transmembrane proteins, or to generate ATP and NADH.

  3. Self-assembly between biomacromolecules and lipids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Hongjun

    Anionic DNA and cationic lipsomes can self-assemble into a multi-lamellar structure where two-dimensional (2-D) lipid sheets confine a periodic one-dimensional (1-D) lattice of parallel DNA chains, between which Cd2+ ions can condense, and be subsequently reacted with H 2S to template CdS nanorods with crystallographic control analogous to biomineralization. The strong electrostatic interactions align the templated CdS (002) polar planes parallel to the negatively charged sugar-phosphate DNA backbone, which indicates that molecular details of the DNA molecule are imprinted onto the inorganic crystal structure. The resultant nanorods have (002) planes tilted by ˜60° with respect to the rod axis, in contrast to all known II-VI semiconductor nanorods. Rational design of the biopolymer-membrane templates is possible, as demonstrated by the self-assembly between anionic M13 virus and cationic membrane. The filamentous virus has diameter ˜3x larger but similar surface charge density as DNA, the self-assembled complexes maintain the multi-lamellar structure, but pore sizes are ˜10x larger in area, which can be used to package and organize large functional molecules. Not only the counter-charged objects can self-assemble, the like-charged biopolymer and membrane can also self-assemble with the help of multivalent ions. We have investigated anionic lipid-DNA complexes induced by a range of divalent ions to show how different ion-mediated interactions are expressed in the self-assembled structures, which include two distinct lamellar phases and an inverted hexagonal phase. DNA can be selectively organized into or expelled out of the lamellar phases depending on membrane charge density and counterion concentration. For a subset of ion (Zn2+ etc.) at high enough concentration, 2-D inverted hexagonal phase can be formed where DNA strands are coated with anionic lipid tubes via interaction with Zn2+ ions. We suggest that the effect of ion binding on lipid's spontaneous

  4. Self-assembling membranes and related methods thereof

    DOEpatents

    Capito, Ramille M; Azevedo, Helena S; Stupp, Samuel L

    2013-08-20

    The present invention relates to self-assembling membranes. In particular, the present invention provides self-assembling membranes configured for securing and/or delivering bioactive agents. In some embodiments, the self-assembling membranes are used in the treatment of diseases, and related methods (e.g., diagnostic methods, research methods, drug screening).

  5. Aerosolized droplet mediated self-assembly of photosynthetic pigment analogues and deposition onto substrates.

    PubMed

    Shah, Vivek B; Biswas, Pratim

    2014-02-25

    Self-assembled photosynthetic molecules have a high extinction coefficient and a broad absorption in the infrared region, and these properties can be used to improve the efficiency of solar cells. We have developed a single-step method for the self-assembly of synthetic chlorin molecules (analogues of native bacteriochlorophylls) in aerosolized droplets, containing a single solvent and two solvents, to synthesize biomimetic light-harvesting structures. In the single-solvent approach, assembly is promoted by a concentration-driven process due to evaporation of the solvent. The peak absorbance of Zn(II) 3-(1-hydroxyethyl)-10-phenyl-13(1)-oxophorbine (1) in methanol shifted from 646 nm to 725 nm (∼ 80 nm shift) after assembly, which is comparable to the shift observed in the naturally occurring assembly of bacteriochlorophyll c. Although assembly is thermodynamically favorable, the kinetics of self-assembly play an important role, and this was demonstrated by varying the initial concentration of the pigment monomer. To overcome kinetic limitations, a two-solvent approach using a volatile solvent (tetrahydrofuran) in which the dye is soluble and a less volatile solvent (ethanol) in which the dye is sparingly soluble was demonstrated to be effective. The effect of molecular structure is demonstrated by spraying the sterically hindered Zn(II) 3-(1-hydroxyethyl)-10-mesityl-13(1)-oxophorbine (2), which is an analogue of 1, under similar conditions. The results illustrate a valuable and facile aerosol-based method for the formation of films of supramolecular assemblies.

  6. Self-assembled Oniontype Multiferroic Nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Shenqiang; Briber, Robert M.; Wuttig, Manfred

    2009-03-01

    Spontaneously self-assembled oniontype multiferroic nanostructures based on block copolymers as templating materials are reported. Diblock copolymer containing two different magnetoelectric precursors separately segregated to the two microdomains have been shown to form well-ordered templated lamellar structures. Onion-type multilamellar ordered multiferroic (PZT/CoFe2O4) nanostructures have been induced by room temperature solvent annealing in a magnetic field oriented perpendicular to the plane of the film. The evolution of the onion-like microstructure has been characterized by AFM, MFM, and TEM. The structure retains lamellar periodicity observed at zero field. The onion structure is superparamagnetic above and antiferromagnetic below the blocking temperature. This templating process opens a route for nanometer-scale patterning of magnetic toroids by means of self-assembly on length scales that are difficult to obtain by standard lithography techniques.

  7. Controlling and imaging biomimetic self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Aliprandi, Alessandro; Mauro, Matteo; De Cola, Luisa

    2016-01-01

    The self-assembly of chemical entities represents a very attractive way to create a large variety of ordered functional structures and complex matter. Although much effort has been devoted to the preparation of supramolecular nanostructures based on different chemical building blocks, an understanding of the mechanisms at play and the ability to monitor assembly processes and, in turn, control them are often elusive, which precludes a deep and comprehensive control of the final structures. Here the complex supramolecular landscape of a platinum(II) compound is characterized fully and controlled successfully through a combination of supramolecular and photochemical approaches. The supramolecular assemblies comprise two kinetic assemblies and their thermodynamic counterpart. The monitoring of the different emission properties of the aggregates, used as a fingerprint for each species, allows the real-time visualization of the evolving self-assemblies. The control of multiple supramolecular pathways will help the design of complex systems in and out of their thermodynamic equilibrium.

  8. Controlling and imaging biomimetic self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aliprandi, Alessandro; Mauro, Matteo; de Cola, Luisa

    2016-01-01

    The self-assembly of chemical entities represents a very attractive way to create a large variety of ordered functional structures and complex matter. Although much effort has been devoted to the preparation of supramolecular nanostructures based on different chemical building blocks, an understanding of the mechanisms at play and the ability to monitor assembly processes and, in turn, control them are often elusive, which precludes a deep and comprehensive control of the final structures. Here the complex supramolecular landscape of a platinum(II) compound is characterized fully and controlled successfully through a combination of supramolecular and photochemical approaches. The supramolecular assemblies comprise two kinetic assemblies and their thermodynamic counterpart. The monitoring of the different emission properties of the aggregates, used as a fingerprint for each species, allows the real-time visualization of the evolving self-assemblies. The control of multiple supramolecular pathways will help the design of complex systems in and out of their thermodynamic equilibrium.

  9. The dynamics of nacre self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Cartwright, Julyan H.E; Checa, Antonio G

    2006-01-01

    We show how nacre and pearl construction in bivalve and gastropod molluscs can be understood in terms of successive processes of controlled self-assembly from the molecular- to the macro-scale. This dynamics involves the physics of the formation of both solid and liquid crystals and of membranes and fluids to produce a nanostructured hierarchically constructed biological composite of polysaccharides, proteins and mineral, whose mechanical properties far surpass those of its component parts. PMID:17251136

  10. Columnar self-assembly of colloidal nanodisks.

    PubMed

    Saunders, Aaron E; Ghezelbash, Ali; Smilgies, Detlef-M; Sigman, Michael B; Korgel, Brian A

    2006-12-01

    The self-assembly of sterically stabilized colloidal copper sulfide nanodisks, 14-20 nm in diameter and 5-7 nm thick, was studied. The nanodisks were observed by electron microscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering to form columnar arrays when evaporated as thin films from concentrated dispersions. These superstructured nanomaterials might give rise to technologically useful properties, such as anisotropic electrical transport and electrorheological and optical properties.

  11. Templated Self Assemble of Nano-Structures

    SciTech Connect

    Suo, Zhigang

    2013-04-29

    This project will identify and model mechanisms that template the self-assembly of nanostructures. We focus on a class of systems involving a two-phase monolayer of molecules adsorbed on a solid surface. At a suitably elevated temperature, the molecules diffuse on the surface to reduce the combined free energy of mixing, phase boundary, elastic field, and electrostatic field. With no template, the phases may form a pattern of stripes or disks. The feature size is on the order of 1-100 nm, selected to compromise the phase boundary energy and the long-range elastic or electrostatic interaction. Both experimental observations and our theoretical simulations have shown that the pattern resembles a periodic lattice, but has abundant imperfections. To form a perfect periodic pattern, or a designed aperiodic pattern, one must introduce a template to guide the assembly. For example, a coarse-scale pattern, lithographically defined on the substrate, will guide the assembly of the nanoscale pattern. As another example, if the molecules on the substrate surface carry strong electric dipoles, a charged object, placed in the space above the monolayer, will guide the assembly of the molecular dipoles. In particular, the charged object can be a mask with a designed nanoscale topographic pattern. A serial process (e.g., e-beam lithography) is necessary to make the mask, but the pattern transfer to the molecules on the substrate is a parallel process. The technique is potentially a high throughput, low cost process to pattern a monolayer. The monolayer pattern itself may serve as a template to fabricate a functional structure. This project will model fundamental aspects of these processes, including thermodynamics and kinetics of self-assembly, templated self-assembly, and self-assembly on unconventional substrates. It is envisioned that the theory will not only explain the available experimental observations, but also motivate new experiments.

  12. Meniscus height controlled convective self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choudhary, Satyan; Crosby, Alfred

    Convective self-assembly techniques based on the 'coffee-ring effect' allow for the fabrication of materials with structural hierarchy and multi-functionality across a wide range of length scales. The coffee-ring effect describes deposition of non-volatiles at the edge of droplet due to capillary flow and pattern formations due to pinning and de-pinning of meniscus with the solvent evaporation. We demonstrate a novel convective self-assembly method which uses a piezo-actuated bending motion for driving the de-pinning step. In this method, a dilute solution of nanoparticles or polymers is trapped by capillary forces between a blade and substrate. As the blade oscillates with a fixed frequency and amplitude and the substrate translates at a fixed velocity, the height of the capillary meniscus oscillates. The meniscus height controls the contact angle of three phase contact line and at a critical angle de-pinning occurs. The combination of convective flux and continuously changing contact angle drives the assembly of the solute and subsequent de-pinning step, providing a direct means for producing linear assemblies. We demonstrate a new method for convective self-assembly at an accelerated rate when compared to other techniques, with control over deposit dimensions. Army Research Office (W911NF-14-1-0185).

  13. Self-Assembly of Chiral Plasmonic Nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Lan, Xiang; Wang, Qiangbin

    2016-12-01

    Plasmonic chiroptical effects have attracted significant attention for their widespread potential applications in negative-refractive-index materials, advanced light-polarization filters, and ultrasensitive sensing devices, etc. As compared to top-down fabrication methods, the bottom-up self-assembly strategy provides nanoscale resolution, parallel production, and isotropic optical response, and therefore plays an indispensable role in the fabrication of chiral plasmonic nanostructures. The optical properties of these chiral structures can be predicted based on the near-field coupling of localized surface plasmons in structural components, which offers a route to tune or enhance optical activity by selecting building blocks and designing structural configurations. To date, three main types of chiral plasmonic nanostructures, i.e., chiral "plasmonic molecules", chiral superstructures, and chiral-molecule-metal hybrid complexes, are usually assembled, in which metal nanoparticles with various sizes, shapes, and compositions, and/or chiral molecules are employed as building blocks. Here, recent achievements in the self-assembly of chiral plasmonic nanostructures are highlighted and perspectives on the future directions of chiral plasmonics integrated with bottom-up self-assembly are presented, showing three typical examples, including chiral plasmonic switches, chiral nanoparticles, and chiral metamaterials.

  14. Anisotropic Self-Assembly of Nanoparticle Amphiphiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Sanat

    2009-03-01

    It is easy to understand the self-assembly of particles having anisotropic shapes or interactions, such as Co nanoparticles or proteins, into highly extended structures. However, there is no experimentally established strategy for creating anisotropic structures from common spherical nanoparticles. We demonstrate that spherical nanoparticles, uniformly grafted with macromolecules, robustly self-assemble into a range of anisotropic superstructures when they are dispersed in the corresponding homopolymer matrix. This phenomenon is driven by the microphase separation between the inorganic nanoparticles and the (organic) polymeric chains grafted to their surfaces in a fashion similar to block copolymers. This microphase separation driven particle self-assembly provides a unique means of controlling the global nanoparticle dispersion state in polymer nanocomposites. The relationship between the state of particle dispersion and nanocomposite properties can thus be critically examined, and in particular we focus on the mechanical reinforcement afforded when particles are added to polymers. Grafted nanoparticles are thus versatile building blocks for creating tunable and functional particle superstructures with significant practical applications. With Pinar Akcora, Hongjun Liu, Yu Li, Brian Benicewicz, Linda Schadler, Thanos Panagiotopoulos, Jack Douglas, P. Thiyagarajan and Ralph Colby.

  15. Engineered Self-Assembly of Plasmonic Nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, Andrea

    2013-03-01

    A critical need in nanotechnology is the development of new tools and methods to organize, connect, and integrate solid-state nanocomponents. Self-assembly - where components spontaneously organize themselves - can be carried out on a massively parallel scale to construct large-scale architectures using solid-state nanocrystal building blocks. I will present our recent work on the synthesis and self-assembly of nanocrystals for plasmonics, where light is propagated, manipulated, and confined by solid-state components that are smaller than the wavelength of light itself. We show the organization of polymer-grafted metal nanocrystals into hierarchical nanojunction arrays that possess intense ``hot spots'' due to electromagnetic field localization. We also show that doped semiconductor nanocrystals can serve as a new class of plasmonic building blocks, where shape and carrier density can be actively tuned to engineer plasmon resonances. These examples demonstrate that nanocrystals possess unique electromagnetic properties that rival top-down structures, and the potential of self-assembly for fabricating designer plasmonic materials.

  16. Interparticle Forces Underlying Nanoparticle Self-Assemblies.

    PubMed

    Luo, Dan; Yan, Cong; Wang, Tie

    2015-12-02

    Studies on the self-assembly of nanoparticles have been a hot topic in nanotechnology for decades and still remain relevant for the present and future due to their tunable collective properties as well as their remarkable applications to a wide range of fields. The novel properties of nanoparticle assemblies arise from their internal interactions and assemblies with the desired architecture key to constructing novel nanodevices. Therefore, a comprehensive understanding of the interparticle forces of nanoparticle self-assemblies is a pre-requisite to the design and control of the assembly processes, so as to fabricate the ideal nanomaterial and nanoproducts. Here, different categories of interparticle forces are classified and discussed according to their origins, behaviors and functions during the assembly processes, and the induced collective properties of the corresponding nanoparticle assemblies. Common interparticle forces, such as van der Waals forces, electrostatic interactions, electromagnetic dipole-dipole interactions, hydrogen bonds, solvophonic interactions, and depletion interactions are discussed in detail. In addition, new categories of assembly principles are summarized and introduced. These are termed template-mediated interactions and shape-complementary interactions. A deep understanding of the interactions inside self-assembled nanoparticles, and a broader perspective for the future synthesis and fabrication of these promising nanomaterials is provided.

  17. Self-assembly of knots and links

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orlandini, Enzo; Polles, Guido; Marenduzzo, Davide; Micheletti, Cristian

    2017-03-01

    Guiding the self-assembly of identical building blocks towards complex three-dimensional structures with a set of desired properties is a major goal in material science, chemistry and physics. A particularly challenging problem, especially explored in synthetic chemistry, is that of self-assembling closed structures with a target topology starting by simple geometrical templates. Here we overview and revisit recent advancements, based on stochastic simulations, where the geometry of rigid helical templates with functionalised sticky ends has been designed for self-assembling efficiently and reproducibly into a wide range of three-dimensional closed structures. Notably, these include non trivial topologies of links and knots, including the 819 knot that we had predicted to be highly encodable and that has only recently been obtained experimentally. By appropriately tuning the parameters that define the template shape, we show that, for fixed concentration of templates, the assembly process can be directed towards the formation of specific knotted and linked structures such as the trefoils, pentafoil knots, Hopf and Solomon links. More exotic and unexpected knots and links are also found. Our results should be relevant to the design of new protocols that can both increase and broaden the population of synthetise molecular knots and catenanes.

  18. Self-assembled tunable photonic hyper-crystals.

    PubMed

    Smolyaninova, Vera N; Yost, Bradley; Lahneman, David; Narimanov, Evgenii E; Smolyaninov, Igor I

    2014-07-16

    We demonstrate a novel artificial optical material, the "photonic hyper-crystal", which combines the most interesting features of hyperbolic metamaterials and photonic crystals. Similar to hyperbolic metamaterials, photonic hyper-crystals exhibit broadband divergence in their photonic density of states due to the lack of usual diffraction limit on the photon wave vector. On the other hand, similar to photonic crystals, hyperbolic dispersion law of extraordinary photons is modulated by forbidden gaps near the boundaries of photonic Brillouin zones. Three dimensional self-assembly of photonic hyper-crystals has been achieved by application of external magnetic field to a cobalt nanoparticle-based ferrofluid. Unique spectral properties of photonic hyper-crystals lead to extreme sensitivity of the material to monolayer coatings of cobalt nanoparticles, which should find numerous applications in biological and chemical sensing.

  19. Self-assembled tunable photonic hyper-crystals

    PubMed Central

    Smolyaninova, Vera N.; Yost, Bradley; Lahneman, David; Narimanov, Evgenii E.; Smolyaninov, Igor I.

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate a novel artificial optical material, the “photonic hyper-crystal”, which combines the most interesting features of hyperbolic metamaterials and photonic crystals. Similar to hyperbolic metamaterials, photonic hyper-crystals exhibit broadband divergence in their photonic density of states due to the lack of usual diffraction limit on the photon wave vector. On the other hand, similar to photonic crystals, hyperbolic dispersion law of extraordinary photons is modulated by forbidden gaps near the boundaries of photonic Brillouin zones. Three dimensional self-assembly of photonic hyper-crystals has been achieved by application of external magnetic field to a cobalt nanoparticle-based ferrofluid. Unique spectral properties of photonic hyper-crystals lead to extreme sensitivity of the material to monolayer coatings of cobalt nanoparticles, which should find numerous applications in biological and chemical sensing. PMID:25027947

  20. Self-assembled biomimetic nanoreactors I: Polymeric template

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McTaggart, Matt; Malardier-Jugroot, Cecile; Jugroot, Manish

    2015-09-01

    The variety of nanoarchitectures made feasible by the self-assembly of alternating copolymers opens new avenues for biomimicry. Indeed, self-assembled structures allow the development of nanoreactors which combine the efficiency of high surface area metal active centres to the effect of confinement due to the very small cavities generated by the self-assembly process. A novel self-assembly of high molecular weight alternating copolymers is characterized in the present study. The self-assembly is shown to organize into nanosheets, providing a 2 nm hydrophobic cavity with a 1D confinement.

  1. Enhanced Conversion Efficiencies in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Achieved through Self-Assembled Platinum(II) Metallacages

    PubMed Central

    He, Zuoli; Hou, Zhiqiang; Xing, Yonglei; Liu, Xiaobin; Yin, Xingtian; Que, Meidan; Shao, Jinyou; Que, Wenxiu; Stang, Peter J.

    2016-01-01

    Two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes with particular photo-physical property, wherein unique donors are combined with a single metal acceptor, can be utilized for many applications including in photo-devices. In this communication, we described the synthesis and characterization of two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) bearing triazine and porphyrin faces with promising light-harvesting properties. These complexes were obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with 2,4,6-tris(4-pyridyl)-1,3,5-triazine (TPyT) or 5,10,15,20-Tetra(4-pyridyl)-21H,23H-porphine (TPyP). The greatly improved conversion efficiencies of the dye-sensitized TiO2 solar cells were 6.79 and 6.08 respectively, while these SCCs were introduced into the TiO2 nanoparticle film photoanodes. In addition, the open circuit voltage (Voc) of dye-sensitized solar cells was also increased to 0.769 and 0.768 V, which could be ascribed to the inhibited interfacial charge recombination due to the addition of SCCs. PMID:27404912

  2. Enhanced Conversion Efficiencies in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Achieved through Self-Assembled Platinum(II) Metallacages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Zuoli; Hou, Zhiqiang; Xing, Yonglei; Liu, Xiaobin; Yin, Xingtian; Que, Meidan; Shao, Jinyou; Que, Wenxiu; Stang, Peter J.

    2016-07-01

    Two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes with particular photo-physical property, wherein unique donors are combined with a single metal acceptor, can be utilized for many applications including in photo-devices. In this communication, we described the synthesis and characterization of two-component self-assembly supramolecular coordination complexes (SCCs) bearing triazine and porphyrin faces with promising light-harvesting properties. These complexes were obtained from the self-assembly of a 90° Pt(II) acceptor with 2,4,6-tris(4-pyridyl)-1,3,5-triazine (TPyT) or 5,10,15,20-Tetra(4-pyridyl)-21H,23H-porphine (TPyP). The greatly improved conversion efficiencies of the dye-sensitized TiO2 solar cells were 6.79 and 6.08 respectively, while these SCCs were introduced into the TiO2 nanoparticle film photoanodes. In addition, the open circuit voltage (Voc) of dye-sensitized solar cells was also increased to 0.769 and 0.768 V, which could be ascribed to the inhibited interfacial charge recombination due to the addition of SCCs.

  3. Photoinduced Electronic Energy Transfer: Theoretical and Experimental Issues for Light Harvesting Applications

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-21

    harvesting systems. Summary of key results: 1. Coherence in photosynthetic light harvesting (experiment) The initial step in photosynthesis...involves the capture of energy from sunlight. Specialized pigment -protein complexes, called light-harvesting antenna complexes, have evolved for this...ours) have reported the observation of oscillations in 2DES attributed to the coherent evolution of electronic excitations in photosynthetic

  4. Integrated Nanosystems Templated by Self-assembled Virus Capsids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephanopoulos, Nicholas

    This dissertation presents the synthesis and modeling of multicomponent nanosystems templated by self-assembled virus capsids. The design principles, synthesis, analysis, and future directions for these capsid-based materials are presented. Chapter 1 gives an overview of the literature on the application of virus capsids in constructing nanomaterials. The uses of capsids in three main areas are considered: (1) as templates for inorganic materials or nanoparticles; (2) as vehicles for biological applications like medical imaging and treatment; and (3) as scaffolds for catalytic materials. In light of this introduction, an overview of the material in this dissertation is described. Chapters 2-4 all describe integrated nanosystems templated by bacteriophage MS2, a spherical icosahedral virus capsid. MS2 possesses an interior and exterior surface that can be modified orthogonally using bioconjugation chemistry to create multivalent, multicomponent constructs with precise localization of components attached to the capsid proteins. Chapter 2 describes the use of MS2 to synthesize a photocatalytic construct by modifying the internal surface with sensitizing chromophores and the external surface with a photocatalytic porphyrin. The chromophores absorbed energy that the porphyrin could not, and transferred it to the porphyrin via FRET through the protein shell. The porphyrin was then able to utilize the energy to carry out photocatalysis at new wavelengths. In Chapter 3, porphyrins were installed on the interior surface of MS2 and DNA aptamers specific for Jurkat leukemia T cells on the exterior surface. The dual-modified capsids were able to bind to Jurkat cells, and upon illumination the porphyrins generated singlet oxygen to kill them selectively over non-targeted cells. Chapter 4 explores integrating MS2 with DNA origami in order to arrange the capsids at larger length scales. Capsids modified with fluorescent dyes inside and single-stranded DNA outside were able to

  5. Optimal light harvesting structures at optical and infrared frequencies.

    PubMed

    Villate-Guío, F; López-Tejeira, F; García-Vidal, F J; Martín-Moreno, L; de León-Pérez, F

    2012-11-05

    One-dimensional light harvesting structures with a realistic geometry nano-patterned on an opaque metallic film are optimized to render high transmission efficiencies at optical and infrared frequencies. Simple design rules are developed for the particular case of a slit-groove array with a given number of grooves that are symmetrically distributed with respect to a central slit. These rules take advantage of the hybridization of Fabry-Perot modes in the slit and surface modes of the corrugated metal surface. Same design rules apply for optical and infrared frequencies. The parameter space of the groove array is also examined with a conjugate gradient optimization algorithm that used as a seed the geometries optimized following physical intuition. Both uniform and nonuniform groove arrays are considered. The largest transmission enhancement, with respect to a uniform array, is obtained for a chirped groove profile. Such relative enhancement is a function of the wavelength. It decreases from 39 % in the optical part of the spectrum to 15 % at the long wavelength infrared.

  6. Biological Nanoplatforms for Self-Assembled Electronics

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-03-24

    Kirtland AFB, NM 87117-5776 NUMBER(S) AFRL -RV-PS-TR-2015-0024 12. DISTRIBUTION / AVAILABILITY STATEMENT Approved for public release; distribution is...LIST DTIC/OCP 8725 John J. Kingman Rd, Suite 0944 Ft Belvoir, VA 22060-6218 1 cy AFRL /RVIL Kirtland AFB, NM 87117-5776 2 cys Official... AFRL -RV-PS- AFRL -RV-PS- TR-2015-0024 TR-2015-0024 BIOLOGICAL NANOPLATFORMS FOR SELF- ASSEMBLED ELECTRONICS Stephen Jett University of New Mexico 1

  7. Self-assembly of colloidal surfactants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kegel, Willem

    2012-02-01

    We developed colloidal dumbbells with a rough and a smooth part, based on a method reported in Ref. [1]. Specific attraction between the smooth parts occurs upon addition of non-adsorbing polymers of appropriate size. We present the first results in terms of the assemblies that emerge in these systems. [4pt] [1] D.J. Kraft, W.S. Vlug, C.M. van Kats, A. van Blaaderen, A. Imhof and W.K. Kegel, Self-assembly of colloids with liquid protrusions, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 131, 1182, (2009)

  8. Functional membranes via nanoparticle self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Green, Erica; Fullwood, Emily; Selden, Julieann; Zharov, Ilya

    2015-05-07

    This article summarizes a recently developed approach for the preparation of membrane materials by the self-assembly of inorganic, polymeric or hybrid nanoparticles, with the focus on functional membranes possessing permselectivity. Two types of such membranes are discussed, those possessing size and charge selectivity suitable for ultra- and nanofiltration and chemoselective separation, and those possessing proton or lithium transport properties suitable for fuel cell and lithium battery applications, respectively. This article describes the preparation methods of nanoparticle membranes, as well as their mechanical, molecular, and ionic transport properties.

  9. Self-assembly of Random Copolymers

    PubMed Central

    Li, Longyu; Raghupathi, Kishore; Song, Cunfeng; Prasad, Priyaa; Thayumanavan, S.

    2014-01-01

    Self-assembly of random copolymers has attracted considerable attention recently. In this feature article, we highlight the use of random copolymers to prepare nanostructures with different morphologies and to prepare nanomaterials that are responsive to single or multiple stimuli. The synthesis of single-chain nanoparticles and their potential applications from random copolymers are also discussed in some detail. We aim to draw more attention to these easily accessible copolymers, which are likely to play an important role in translational polymer research. PMID:25036552

  10. Self-assembly of magnetic biofunctional nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Sun Xiangcheng; Thode, C.J.; Mabry, J.K.; Harrell, J.W.; Nikles, D.E.; Sun, K.; Wang, L.M.

    2005-05-15

    Spherical, ferromagnetic FePt nanoparticles with a particle size of 3 nm were prepared by the simultaneous polyol reduction of Fe(acac){sub 3} and Pt(acac){sub 2} in phenyl ether in the presence of oleic acid and oleylamine. The oleic acid ligands can be replaced with 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid, giving particles that can be dispersed in water. Both x-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy indicated that FePt particles were not affected by ligands replacement. Dispersions of the FePt particles with 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid ligands and ammonium counter ions gave self-assembled films consisting of highly ordered hexagonal arrays of particles.

  11. Self-assembled Nanofibrils for Immunomodulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Fan

    This thesis has been mainly focused on applying self-assembled nanofibrils as unique depots for controlled release to modulate immune system, with two major chapters on modulation of innate immunity in chapter 2 and adaptive immunity in chapter 3, respectively. There are 5 chapters in the thesis. Chapter 1 gives a detailed review on the discovery, synthesis and application of self-assembled nanofibrils of therapeutic agents (termed as "self-delivery drugs"), including bioactive molecules; Chapter 2 demonstrates the supramolecular hydrogel of chemotactic peptides as a prolonged inflammation model through proper molecular engineering; Chapter 3 reports a suppressive antibody response achieved by encapsulation of antigens by supramolecular hydrogel of glycopeptide; Chapter 4 illustrates an example of supramolecular hydrogel formation of molecules with extremely low solubility, based on the fact that many small organic drugs have poor solubility. Chapter 5 used beta-galatosidase as a model to study glycosidase-instructed supramolecular hydrogel formation, with potential to target cancer cells due to their distinct metabolic profile.

  12. Triggered self-assembly of magnetic nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ye, L.; Pearson, T.; Cordeau, Y.; Mefford, O. T.; Crawford, T. M.

    2016-03-01

    Colloidal magnetic nanoparticles are candidates for application in biology, medicine and nanomanufac-turing. Understanding how these particles interact collectively in fluids, especially how they assemble and aggregate under external magnetic fields, is critical for high quality, safe, and reliable deployment of these particles. Here, by applying magnetic forces that vary strongly over the same length scale as the colloidal stabilizing force and then varying this colloidal repulsion, we can trigger self-assembly of these nanoparticles into parallel line patterns on the surface of a disk drive medium. Localized within nanometers of the medium surface, this effect is strongly dependent on the ionic properties of the colloidal fluid but at a level too small to cause bulk colloidal aggregation. We use real-time optical diffraction to monitor the dynamics of self-assembly, detecting local colloidal changes with greatly enhanced sensitivity compared with conventional light scattering. Simulations predict the triggering but not the dynamics, especially at short measurement times. Beyond using spatially-varying magnetic forces to balance interactions and drive assembly in magnetic nanoparticles, future measurements leveraging the sensitivity of this approach could identify novel colloidal effects that impact real-world applications of these nanoparticles.

  13. Directed Self-Assembly: Expectations and Achievements

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Nanotechnology has been a revolutionary thrust in recent years of development of science and technology for its broad appeal for employing a novel idea for relevant technological applications in particular and for mass-scale production and marketing as common man commodity in general. An interesting aspect of this emergent technology is that it involves scientific research community and relevant industries alike. Top–down and bottom–up approaches are two broad division of production of nanoscale materials in general. However, both the approaches have their own limits as far as large-scale production and cost involved are concerned. Therefore, novel new techniques are desired to be developed to optimize production and cost. Directed self-assembly seems to be a promising technique in this regard; which can work as a bridge between the top–down and bottom–up approaches. This article reviews how directed self-assembly as a technique has grown up and outlines its future prospects. PMID:20730077

  14. Triggered self-assembly of magnetic nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Ye, L.; Pearson, T.; Cordeau, Y.; Mefford, O. T.; Crawford, T. M.

    2016-01-01

    Colloidal magnetic nanoparticles are candidates for application in biology, medicine and nanomanufac-turing. Understanding how these particles interact collectively in fluids, especially how they assemble and aggregate under external magnetic fields, is critical for high quality, safe, and reliable deployment of these particles. Here, by applying magnetic forces that vary strongly over the same length scale as the colloidal stabilizing force and then varying this colloidal repulsion, we can trigger self-assembly of these nanoparticles into parallel line patterns on the surface of a disk drive medium. Localized within nanometers of the medium surface, this effect is strongly dependent on the ionic properties of the colloidal fluid but at a level too small to cause bulk colloidal aggregation. We use real-time optical diffraction to monitor the dynamics of self-assembly, detecting local colloidal changes with greatly enhanced sensitivity compared with conventional light scattering. Simulations predict the triggering but not the dynamics, especially at short measurement times. Beyond using spatially-varying magnetic forces to balance interactions and drive assembly in magnetic nanoparticles, future measurements leveraging the sensitivity of this approach could identify novel colloidal effects that impact real-world applications of these nanoparticles. PMID:26975332

  15. Quantifying quality in DNA self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Wagenbauer, Klaus F.; Wachauf, Christian H.; Dietz, Hendrik

    2014-01-01

    Molecular self-assembly with DNA is an attractive route for building nanoscale devices. The development of sophisticated and precise objects with this technique requires detailed experimental feedback on the structure and composition of assembled objects. Here we report a sensitive assay for the quality of assembly. The method relies on measuring the content of unpaired DNA bases in self-assembled DNA objects using a fluorescent de-Bruijn probe for three-base ‘codons’, which enables a comparison with the designed content of unpaired DNA. We use the assay to measure the quality of assembly of several multilayer DNA origami objects and illustrate the use of the assay for the rational refinement of assembly protocols. Our data suggests that large and complex objects like multilayer DNA origami can be made with high strand integration quality up to 99%. Beyond DNA nanotechnology, we speculate that the ability to discriminate unpaired from paired nucleic acids in the same macromolecule may also be useful for analysing cellular nucleic acids. PMID:24751596

  16. Molecular self-assembly at solid surfaces.

    PubMed

    Otero, Roberto; Gallego, José María; de Parga, Amadeo L Vázquez; Martín, Nazario; Miranda, Rodolfo

    2011-11-23

    Self-assembly, the process by which objects initially distributed at random arrange into well-defined patterns exclusively due to their local mutual interactions without external intervention, is generally accepted to be the most promising method for large-scale fabrication of functional nanostructures. In particular, the ordering of molecular building-blocks deposited at solid surfaces is relevant for the performance of many organic electronic and optoelectronic devices, such as organic field-effect transistors (OFETs), organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) or photovoltaic solar cells. However, the fundamental knowledge on the nature and strength of the intermolecular and molecule-substrate interactions that govern the ordering of molecular adsorbates is, in many cases, rather scarce. In most cases, the structure and morphology of the organic-metal interface is not known and it is just assumed to be the same as in the bulk, thereby implicitly neglecting the role of the surface on the assembly. However, this approximation is usually not correct, and the evidence gathered over the last decades points towards an active role of the surface in the assembly, leading to self-assembled structures that only in a few occasions can be understood by considering just intermolecular interactions in solid or gas phases. In this work we review several examples from our recent research demonstrating the apparently endless variety of ways in which the surface might affect the assembly of organic adsorbates.

  17. Triggered self-assembly of magnetic nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Ye, L; Pearson, T; Cordeau, Y; Mefford, O T; Crawford, T M

    2016-03-15

    Colloidal magnetic nanoparticles are candidates for application in biology, medicine and nanomanufacturing. Understanding how these particles interact collectively in fluids, especially how they assemble and aggregate under external magnetic fields, is critical for high quality, safe, and reliable deployment of these particles. Here, by applying magnetic forces that vary strongly over the same length scale as the colloidal stabilizing force and then varying this colloidal repulsion, we can trigger self-assembly of these nanoparticles into parallel line patterns on the surface of a disk drive medium. Localized within nanometers of the medium surface, this effect is strongly dependent on the ionic properties of the colloidal fluid but at a level too small to cause bulk colloidal aggregation. We use real-time optical diffraction to monitor the dynamics of self-assembly, detecting local colloidal changes with greatly enhanced sensitivity compared with conventional light scattering. Simulations predict the triggering but not the dynamics, especially at short measurement times. Beyond using spatially-varying magnetic forces to balance interactions and drive assembly in magnetic nanoparticles, future measurements leveraging the sensitivity of this approach could identify novel colloidal effects that impact real-world applications of these nanoparticles.

  18. Comparison of directed self-assembly integrations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Somervell, Mark; Gronheid, Roel; Hooge, Joshua; Nafus, Kathleen; Rincon Delgadillo, Paulina; Thode, Chris; Younkin, Todd; Matsunaga, Koichi; Rathsack, Ben; Scheer, Steven; Nealey, Paul

    2012-03-01

    Directed Self-Assembly (DSA) is gaining momentum as a means for extending optical lithography past its current limits. There are many forms of the technology, and it can be used for creating both line/space and hole patterns.1-3 As with any new technology, adoption of DSA faces several key challenges. These include creation of a new materials infrastructure, fabrication of new processing hardware, and the development of implementable integrations. Above all else, determining the lowest possible defect density remains the industry's most critical concern. Over the past year, our team, working at IMEC, has explored various integrations for making 12-14nm half-pitch line/space arrays. Both grapho- and chemo-epitaxy implementations have been investigated in order to discern which offers the best path to high volume manufacturing. This paper will discuss the manufacturing readiness of the various implementations by comparing the process margin for different DSA processing steps and defect density for the entirety of the flow. As part of this work, we will describe our method for using programmed defectivity on reticle to elucidate the mechanisms that drive self-assembly defectivity on wafer.

  19. Peptide self-assembly: thermodynamics and kinetics.

    PubMed

    Wang, Juan; Liu, Kai; Xing, Ruirui; Yan, Xuehai

    2016-10-21

    Self-assembling systems play a significant role in physiological functions and have therefore attracted tremendous attention due to their great potential for applications in energy, biomedicine and nanotechnology. Peptides, consisting of amino acids, are among the most popular building blocks and programmable molecular motifs. Nanostructures and materials assembled using peptides exhibit important potential for green-life new technology and biomedical applications mostly because of their bio-friendliness and reversibility. The formation of these ordered nanostructures pertains to the synergistic effect of various intermolecular non-covalent interactions, including hydrogen-bonding, π-π stacking, electrostatic, hydrophobic, and van der Waals interactions. Therefore, the self-assembly process is mainly driven by thermodynamics; however, kinetics is also a critical factor in structural modulation and function integration. In this review, we focus on the influence of thermodynamic and kinetic factors on structural assembly and regulation based on different types of peptide building blocks, including aromatic dipeptides, amphiphilic peptides, polypeptides, and amyloid-relevant peptides.

  20. Strong antenna-enhanced fluorescence of a single light-harvesting complex shows photon antibunching

    PubMed Central

    Wientjes, Emilie; Renger, Jan; Curto, Alberto G.; Cogdell, Richard; van Hulst, Niek F.

    2014-01-01

    The nature of the highly efficient energy transfer in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes is a subject of intense research. Unfortunately, the low fluorescence efficiency and limited photostability hampers the study of individual light-harvesting complexes at ambient conditions. Here we demonstrate an over 500-fold fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) at the single-molecule level by coupling to a gold nanoantenna. The resonant antenna produces an excitation enhancement of circa 100 times and a fluorescence lifetime shortening to ~\

  1. Light Harvesting Proteins for Solar Fuel Generation in Bioengineered Photoelectrochemical Cells

    PubMed Central

    Ihssen, Julian; Braun, Artur; Faccio, Greta; Gajda-Schrantz, Krisztina; Thöny-Meyer, Linda

    2014-01-01

    The sun is the primary energy source of our planet and potentially can supply all societies with more than just their basic energy needs. Demand of electric energy can be satisfied with photovoltaics, however the global demand for fuels is even higher. The direct way to produce the solar fuel hydrogen is by water splitting in photoelectrochemical (PEC) cells, an artificial mimic of photosynthesis. There is currently strong resurging interest for solar fuels produced by PEC cells, but some fundamental technological problems need to be solved to make PEC water splitting an economic, competitive alternative. One of the problems is to provide a low cost, high performing water oxidizing and oxygen evolving photoanode in an environmentally benign setting. Hematite, α-Fe2O3, satisfies many requirements for a good PEC photoanode, but its efficiency is insufficient in its pristine form. A promising strategy for enhancing photocurrent density takes advantage of photosynthetic proteins. In this paper we give an overview of how electrode surfaces in general and hematite photoanodes in particular can be functionalized with light harvesting proteins. Specifically, we demonstrate how low-cost biomaterials such as cyanobacterial phycocyanin and enzymatically produced melanin increase the overall performance of virtually no-cost metal oxide photoanodes in a PEC system. The implementation of biomaterials changes the overall nature of the photoanode assembly in a way that aggressive alkaline electrolytes such as concentrated KOH are not required anymore. Rather, a more environmentally benign and pH neutral electrolyte can be used. PMID:24678669

  2. Surface-Cross-Linked Micelles as Multifunctionalized Organic Nanoparticles for Controlled Release, Light Harvesting, and Catalysis

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Surfactant micelles are dynamic entities with a rapid exchange of monomers. By “clicking” tripropargylammonium-containing surfactants with diazide cross-linkers, we obtained surface-cross-linked micelles (SCMs) that could be multifunctionalized for different applications. They triggered membrane fusion through tunable electrostatic interactions with lipid bilayers. Antenna chromophores could be installed on them to create artificial light-harvesting complexes with efficient energy migration among tens to hundreds of chromophores. When cleavable cross-linkers were used, the SCMs could break apart in response to redox or pH signals, ejecting entrapped contents quickly as a result of built-in electrostatic stress. They served as caged surfactants whose surface activity was turned on by environmental stimuli. They crossed cell membranes readily. Encapsulated fluorophores showed enhanced photophysical properties including improved quantum yields and greatly expanded Stokes shifts. Catalytic groups could be installed on the surface or in the interior, covalently attached or physically entrapped. As enzyme mimics, the SCMs enabled rational engineering of the microenvironment around the catalysts to afford activity and selectivity not possible with conventional catalysts. PMID:27181610

  3. Light harvesting proteins for solar fuel generation in bioengineered photoelectrochemical cells.

    PubMed

    Ihssen, Julian; Braun, Artur; Faccio, Greta; Gajda-Schrantz, Krisztina; Thöny-Meyer, Linda

    2014-01-01

    The sun is the primary energy source of our planet and potentially can supply all societies with more than just their basic energy needs. Demand of electric energy can be satisfied with photovoltaics, however the global demand for fuels is even higher. The direct way to produce the solar fuel hydrogen is by water splitting in photoelectrochemical (PEC) cells, an artificial mimic of photosynthesis. There is currently strong resurging interest for solar fuels produced by PEC cells, but some fundamental technological problems need to be solved to make PEC water splitting an economic, competitive alternative. One of the problems is to provide a low cost, high performing water oxidizing and oxygen evolving photoanode in an environmentally benign setting. Hematite, α-Fe2O3, satisfies many requirements for a good PEC photoanode, but its efficiency is insufficient in its pristine form. A promising strategy for enhancing photocurrent density takes advantage of photosynthetic proteins. In this paper we give an overview of how electrode surfaces in general and hematite photoanodes in particular can be functionalized with light harvesting proteins. Specifically, we demonstrate how low-cost biomaterials such as cyanobacterial phycocyanin and enzymatically produced melanin increase the overall performance of virtually no-cost metal oxide photoanodes in a PEC system. The implementation of biomaterials changes the overall nature of the photoanode assembly in a way that aggressive alkaline electrolytes such as concentrated KOH are not required anymore. Rather, a more environmentally benign and pH neutral electrolyte can be used.

  4. Self-assembled software and method of overriding software execution

    DOEpatents

    Bouchard, Ann M.; Osbourn, Gordon C.

    2013-01-08

    A computer-implemented software self-assembled system and method for providing an external override and monitoring capability to dynamically self-assembling software containing machines that self-assemble execution sequences and data structures. The method provides an external override machine that can be introduced into a system of self-assembling machines while the machines are executing such that the functionality of the executing software can be changed or paused without stopping the code execution and modifying the existing code. Additionally, a monitoring machine can be introduced without stopping code execution that can monitor specified code execution functions by designated machines and communicate the status to an output device.

  5. DNA tile based self-assembly: building complex nanoarchitectures.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chenxiang; Liu, Yan; Rinker, Sherri; Yan, Hao

    2006-08-11

    DNA tile based self-assembly provides an attractive route to create nanoarchitectures of programmable patterns. It also offers excellent scaffolds for directed self-assembly of nanometer-scale materials, ranging from nanoparticles to proteins, with potential applications in constructing nanoelectronic/nanophotonic devices and protein/ligand nanoarrays. This Review first summarizes the currently available DNA tile toolboxes and further emphasizes recent developments toward self-assembling DNA nanostructures with increasing complexity. Exciting progress using DNA tiles for directed self-assembly of other nanometer scale components is also discussed.

  6. Light Harvesting and White-Light Generation in a Composite of Carbon Dots and Dye-Encapsulated BSA-Protein-Capped Gold Nanoclusters.

    PubMed

    Barman, Monoj Kumar; Paramanik, Bipattaran; Bain, Dipankar; Patra, Amitava

    2016-08-08

    Several strategies have been adopted to design an artificial light-harvesting system in which light energy is captured by peripheral chromophores and it is subsequently transferred to the core via energy transfer. A composite of carbon dots and dye-encapsulated BSA-protein-capped gold nanoclusters (AuNCs) has been developed for efficient light harvesting and white light generation. Carbon dots (C-dots) act as donor and AuNCs capped with BSA protein act as acceptor. Analysis reveals that energy transfer increases from 63 % to 83 % in presence of coumarin dye (C153), which enhances the cascade energy transfer from carbon dots to AuNCs. Bright white light emission with a quantum yield of 19 % under the 375 nm excitation wavelength is achieved by changing the ratio of components. Interesting findings reveal that the efficient energy transfer in carbon-dot-metal-cluster nanocomposites may open up new possibilities in designing artificial light harvesting systems for future applications.

  7. Fabrication of bioinspired nanostructured materials via colloidal self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Wei-Han

    ultimate strains than nacre and pure GO paper (also synthesized by filtration). Specifically, it exhibits ˜30 times higher fracture energy than filtrated graphene paper and nacre, ˜100 times tougher than filtrated GO paper. Besides reinforced nanocomposites, we further explored the self-assembly of spherical colloids and the templating nanofabrication of moth-eye-inspired broadband antireflection coatings. Binary crystalline structures can be easily accomplished by spin-coating double-layer nonclose-packed colloidal crystals as templates, followed by colloidal templating. The polymer matrix between self-assembled colloidal crystal has been used as a sacrificial template to define the resulting periodic binary nanostructures, including intercalated arrays of silica spheres and polymer posts, gold nanohole arrays with binary sizes, and dimple-nipple antireflection coatings. The binary-structured antireflection coatings exhibit better antireflective properties than unitary coatings. Natural optical structures and nanocomposites teach us a great deal on how to create high performance artificial materials. The bottom-up technologies developed in this thesis are scalable and compatible with standard industrial processes, promising for manufacturing high-performance materials for the benefits of human beings.

  8. Low-Bandgap Thiophene Dendrimers for Improved Light Harvesting

    SciTech Connect

    Rupert, B. L.; Mitchell, W. J.; Ferguson, A. J.; Kose, M. E.; Rance, W. L.; Rumbles, G.; Ginley, D. S.; Shaheen, S. E.; Kopidakis, N.

    2009-01-01

    This article follows our previous work on the synthesis and characterization of pi-conjugated dendrimers for use in organic solar cells. Here we discuss five new thiophene-based dendrimers that were synthesized in order to study the relationship between their chemical structures and electronic properties. Three of these dendrimers incorporate acetylene spacers, included to relieve steric strain, between the thiophene arms and phenyl cores used in previous studies. Only a small effect on the electronic properties is observed upon inclusion of the acetylene spacer in the three-arm dendrimer, 3G1-2S-Ac. In contrast, a decrease in the bandgap is observed for the four-arm dendrimer, 4G1-2S-Ac, due to a reduction of interactions between the arms in the more sterically congested 1,2,4,5-arrangement around the phenyl core, resulting in delocalization of the exciton through the phenyl core. Incorporation of electron-withdrawing cyano groups on the phenyl core of the three-arm dendrimer, 3G1-2S-CN, resulted in a very large ({approx}0.5 eV) decrease in the bandgap, due to stabilization of the lowest unoccupied molecular orbital, and the low energy absorption band in this material is attributed to a transition with significant intramolecular charge-transfer character. The electronic properties of three- and four-arm dendrimers with electron-donating dibutylaniline moieties attached to the end of the thiophene dendron, 3G1-2S-N and 4G1-2S-N respectively, are almost identical, indicating that they are dominated by the arms, with no through-core communication allowed, even for the para-linked arms of 4G1-2S-N. However, there is a significant increase in the molar absorptivity of these materials, concomitant with significant broadening of the absorption spectrum, which is an important attribute in light-harvesting applications.

  9. Enhancing light-harvesting power with coherent vibrational interactions: A quantum heat engine picture

    SciTech Connect

    Killoran, N.; Huelga, S. F.; Plenio, M. B.

    2015-10-21

    Recent evidence suggests that quantum effects may have functional importance in biological light-harvesting systems. Along with delocalized electronic excitations, it is now suspected that quantum coherent interactions with certain near-resonant vibrations may contribute to light-harvesting performance. However, the actual quantum advantage offered by such coherent vibrational interactions has not yet been established. We investigate a quantum design principle, whereby coherent exchange of single energy quanta between electronic and vibrational degrees of freedom can enhance a light-harvesting system’s power above what is possible by thermal mechanisms alone. We present a prototype quantum heat engine which cleanly illustrates this quantum design principle and quantifies its quantum advantage using thermodynamic measures of performance. We also demonstrate the principle’s relevance in parameter regimes connected to natural light-harvesting structures.

  10. Enhancing light-harvesting power with coherent vibrational interactions: A quantum heat engine picture.

    PubMed

    Killoran, N; Huelga, S F; Plenio, M B

    2015-10-21

    Recent evidence suggests that quantum effects may have functional importance in biological light-harvesting systems. Along with delocalized electronic excitations, it is now suspected that quantum coherent interactions with certain near-resonant vibrations may contribute to light-harvesting performance. However, the actual quantum advantage offered by such coherent vibrational interactions has not yet been established. We investigate a quantum design principle, whereby coherent exchange of single energy quanta between electronic and vibrational degrees of freedom can enhance a light-harvesting system's power above what is possible by thermal mechanisms alone. We present a prototype quantum heat engine which cleanly illustrates this quantum design principle and quantifies its quantum advantage using thermodynamic measures of performance. We also demonstrate the principle's relevance in parameter regimes connected to natural light-harvesting structures.

  11. Pseudotannins Self-assembled into Antioxidant Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, H. A.; Drinnan, C. T.; Pleshko, N.; Fisher, O. Z.

    2015-01-01

    Natural tannins are attractive as building blocks for biomaterials due to their antioxidant properties and ability to form interpolymer complexes (IPCs) with other macromolecules. One of the major challenges to tannin usage in biomedical applications is their instability at physiological conditions and a lack of control over the purity and reactivity. Herein, we report the synthesis and characterization of tannin-like polymers with controlled architecture, reactivity, and size. These pseudotannins were synthesized by substituting linear dextran chains with gallic, resorcylic, and protocatechuic pendant groups to mimic the structure of natural hydrolysable tannins. We demonstrate that these novel materials can self-assemble to form reductive and colloidally stable nanoscale and microscale particles. Specifically, the synthesis, turbidity, particle size, antioxidant power, and cell uptake of IPCs derived from pseudotannins and poly(ethylene glycol) was evaluated. PMID:26313262

  12. Controlling water evaporation through self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Roger, Kevin; Liebi, Marianne; Heimdal, Jimmy; Pham, Quoc Dat; Sparr, Emma

    2016-01-01

    Water evaporation concerns all land-living organisms, as ambient air is dryer than their corresponding equilibrium humidity. Contrarily to plants, mammals are covered with a skin that not only hinders evaporation but also maintains its rate at a nearly constant value, independently of air humidity. Here, we show that simple amphiphiles/water systems reproduce this behavior, which suggests a common underlying mechanism originating from responding self-assembly structures. The composition and structure gradients arising from the evaporation process were characterized using optical microscopy, infrared microscopy, and small-angle X-ray scattering. We observed a thin and dry outer phase that responds to changes in air humidity by increasing its thickness as the air becomes dryer, which decreases its permeability to water, thus counterbalancing the increase in the evaporation driving force. This thin and dry outer phase therefore shields the systems from humidity variations. Such a feedback loop achieves a homeostatic regulation of water evaporation. PMID:27573848

  13. Controlling water evaporation through self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Roger, Kevin; Liebi, Marianne; Heimdal, Jimmy; Pham, Quoc Dat; Sparr, Emma

    2016-09-13

    Water evaporation concerns all land-living organisms, as ambient air is dryer than their corresponding equilibrium humidity. Contrarily to plants, mammals are covered with a skin that not only hinders evaporation but also maintains its rate at a nearly constant value, independently of air humidity. Here, we show that simple amphiphiles/water systems reproduce this behavior, which suggests a common underlying mechanism originating from responding self-assembly structures. The composition and structure gradients arising from the evaporation process were characterized using optical microscopy, infrared microscopy, and small-angle X-ray scattering. We observed a thin and dry outer phase that responds to changes in air humidity by increasing its thickness as the air becomes dryer, which decreases its permeability to water, thus counterbalancing the increase in the evaporation driving force. This thin and dry outer phase therefore shields the systems from humidity variations. Such a feedback loop achieves a homeostatic regulation of water evaporation.

  14. Self-Assembled Magnetic Surface Swimmers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snezhko, A.; Belkin, M.; Aranson, I. S.; Kwok, W.-K.

    2009-03-01

    We report studies of novel self-assembled magnetic surface swimmers (magnetic snakes) formed from a dispersion of magnetic microparticles at a liquid-air interface and energized by an alternating magnetic field. We show that under certain conditions the snakes spontaneously break the symmetry of surface flows and turn into self-propelled objects. Parameters of the driving magnetic field tune the propulsion velocity of these snakelike swimmers. We find that the symmetry of the surface flows can also be broken in a controlled fashion by attaching a large bead to a magnetic snake (bead-snake hybrid), transforming it into a self-locomoting entity. The observed phenomena have been successfully described by a phenomenological model based on the amplitude equation for surface waves coupled to a large-scale hydrodynamic mean flow equation.

  15. Self-assembling multimeric nucleic acid constructs

    DOEpatents

    Cantor, Charles R.; Niemeyer, Christof M.; Smith, Cassandra L.; Sano, Takeshi; Hnatowich, Donald J.; Rusckowski, Mary

    1996-01-01

    The invention is directed to constructs and compositions containing multimeric forms of nucleic acid. Multimeric nucleic acids comprise single-stranded nucleic acids attached via biotin to streptavidin and bound with a functional group. These constructs can be utilized in vivo to treat or identify diseased tissue or cells. Repeated administrations of multimeric nucleic acid compositions produce a rapid and specific amplification of nucleic acid constructs and their attached functional groups. For treatment purposes, functional groups may be toxins, radioisotopes, genes or enzymes. Diagnostically, labeled multimeric constructs may be used to identify specific targets in vivo or in vitro. Multimeric nucleic acids may also be used in nanotechnology and to create self-assembling polymeric aggregates such as membranes of defined porosity, microcircuits and many other products.

  16. Self-assembling multimeric nucleic acid constructs

    DOEpatents

    Cantor, Charles R.; Niemeyer, Christof M.; Smith, Cassandra L.; Sano, Takeshi; Hnatowich, Donald J.; Rusckowski, Mary

    1999-10-12

    The invention is directed to constructs and compositions containing multimeric forms of nucleic acid. Multimeric nucleic acids comprise single-stranded nucleic acids attached via biotin to streptavidin and bound with a functional group. These constructs can be utilized in vivo to treat or identify diseased tissue or cells. Repeated administrations of multimeric nucleic acid compositions produce a rapid and specific amplification of nucleic acid constructs and their attached functional groups. For treatment purposes, functional groups may be toxins, radioisotopes, genes or enzymes. Diagnostically, labeled multimeric constructs may be used to identify specific targets in vivo or in vitro. Multimeric nucleic acids may also be used in nanotechnology and to create self-assembling polymeric aggregates such as membranes of defined porosity, microcircuits and many other products.

  17. Self-assembling multimeric nucleic acid constructs

    DOEpatents

    Cantor, C.R.; Niemeyer, C.M.; Smith, C.L.; Sano, Takeshi; Hnatowich, D.J.; Rusckowski, M.

    1996-10-01

    The invention is directed to constructs and compositions containing multimeric forms of nucleic acid. Multimeric nucleic acids comprise single-stranded nucleic acids attached via biotin to streptavidin and bound with a functional group. These constructs can be utilized in vivo to treat or identify diseased tissue or cells. Repeated administrations of multimeric nucleic acid compositions produce a rapid and specific amplification of nucleic acid constructs and their attached functional groups. For treatment purposes, functional groups may be toxins, radioisotopes, genes or enzymes. Diagnostically, labeled multimeric constructs may be used to identify specific targets in vivo or in vitro. Multimeric nucleic acids may also be used in nanotechnology and to create self-assembling polymeric aggregates such as membranes of defined porosity, microcircuits and many other products. 5 figs.

  18. Self Assembly and Elasticity of Nuclear Pasta

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caplan, Matthew; Horowitz, Chuck; Berry, Don; da Silva Schneider, Andre

    2015-10-01

    While the outer crust of a neutron star is likely a solid ion lattice, the core consists of uniform nuclear matter at or above saturation density. In between, nuclei adopt exotic non-spherical geometries called ``nuclear pasta'' in order to minimize the nuclear attraction and Coulomb repulsion between protons. These structures have been well studied with both classical and quantum molecular dynamics, and their geometry can be predicted from the density, temperature, and proton fraction. Recent classical molecular dynamics simulations find evidence for a phase transition at T ~ 0 . 5 MeV, where simulations with low proton fractions undergo a solid-liquid phase transition, while simulations with high proton fractions under a glass-rubber phase transition. This is expected to have nontrivial consequences for the elastic properties of the pasta. Additionally, recent observations indicate that the structure of nuclear pasta may be related to structures observed in biophysics, specifically self assembling lipid membranes.

  19. Supramolecular self-assemblies as functional nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Busseron, Eric; Ruff, Yves; Moulin, Emilie; Giuseppone, Nicolas

    2013-07-01

    In this review, we survey the diversity of structures and functions which are encountered in advanced self-assembled nanomaterials. We highlight their flourishing implementations in three active domains of applications: biomedical sciences, information technologies, and environmental sciences. Our main objective is to provide the reader with a concise and straightforward entry to this broad field by selecting the most recent and important research articles, supported by some more comprehensive reviews to introduce each topic. Overall, this compilation illustrates how, based on the rules of supramolecular chemistry, the bottom-up approach to design functional objects at the nanoscale is currently producing highly sophisticated materials oriented towards a growing number of applications with high societal impact.

  20. Self-assembled magnetic surface swimmers.

    SciTech Connect

    Snezhko, A.; Belkin, M.; Aranson, I. S.; Kwok, W.-K.; Materials Science Division; Illinois Inst. of Tech.

    2009-03-20

    We report studies of novel self-assembled magnetic surface swimmers (magnetic snakes) formed from a dispersion of magnetic microparticles at a liquid-air interface and energized by an alternating magnetic field. We show that under certain conditions the snakes spontaneously break the symmetry of surface flows and turn into self-propelled objects. Parameters of the driving magnetic field tune the propulsion velocity of these snakelike swimmers. We find that the symmetry of the surface flows can also be broken in a controlled fashion by attaching a large bead to a magnetic snake (bead-snake hybrid), transforming it into a self-locomoting entity. The observed phenomena have been successfully described by a phenomenological model based on the amplitude equation for surface waves coupled to a large-scale hydrodynamic mean flow equation.

  1. Self assembled structures for 3D integration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rao, Madhav

    Three dimensional (3D) micro-scale structures attached to a silicon substrate have various applications in microelectronics. However, formation of 3D structures using conventional micro-fabrication techniques are not efficient and require precise control of processing parameters. Self assembly is a method for creating 3D structures that takes advantage of surface area minimization phenomena. Solder based self assembly (SBSA), the subject of this dissertation, uses solder as a facilitator in the formation of 3D structures from 2D patterns. Etching a sacrificial layer underneath a portion of the 2D pattern allows the solder reflow step to pull those areas out of the substrate plane resulting in a folded 3D structure. Initial studies using the SBSA method demonstrated low yields in the formation of five different polyhedra. The failures in folding were primarily attributed to nonuniform solder deposition on the underlying metal pads. The dip soldering method was analyzed and subsequently refined. A modified dip soldering process provided improved yield among the polyhedra. Solder bridging referred as joining of solder deposited on different metal patterns in an entity influenced the folding mechanism. In general, design parameters such as small gap-spacings and thick metal pads were found to favor solder bridging for all patterns studied. Two types of soldering: face and edge soldering were analyzed. Face soldering refers to the application of solder on the entire metal face. Edge soldering indicates application of solder only on the edges of the metal face. Mechanical grinding showed that face soldered SBSA structures were void free and robust in nature. In addition, the face soldered 3D structures provide a consistent heat resistant solder standoff height that serve as attachments in the integration of dissimilar electronic technologies. Face soldered 3D structures were developed on the underlying conducting channel to determine the thermo-electric reliability of

  2. Self assembly properties of primitive organic compounds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Deamer, D. W.

    1991-01-01

    A central event in the origin of life was the self-assembly of amphiphilic, lipid-like compounds into closed microenvironments. If a primitive macromolecular replicating system could be encapsulated within a vesicular membrane, the components of the system would share the same microenvironment, and the result would be a step toward true cellular function. The goal of our research has been to determine what amphiphilic molecules might plausibly have been available on the early Earth to participate in the formation of such boundary structures. To this end, we have investigated primitive organic mixtures present in carbonaceous meteorites such as the Murchison meteorite, which contains 1-2 percent of its mass in the form of organic carbon compounds. It is likely that such compounds contributed to the inventory of organic carbon on the prebiotic earth, and were available to participate in chemical evolution leading to the emergence of the first cellular life forms. We found that Murchison components extracted into non-polar solvent systems are surface active, a clear indication of amphiphilic character. One acidic fraction self-assembles into vesicular membranes that provide permeability barriers to polar solutes. Other evidence indicates that the membranes are bimolecular layers similar to those formed by contemporary membrane lipids. We conclude that bilayer membrane formation by primitive amphiphiles on the early Earth is feasible. However, only a minor fraction of acidic amphiphiles assembles into bilayers, and the resulting membranes require narrowly defined conditions of pH and ionic composition to be stable. It seems unlikely, therefore, that meteoritic infall was a direct source of membrane amphiphiles. Instead, the hydrocarbon components and their derivatives more probably would provide an organic stock available for chemical evolution. Our current research is directed at possible reactions which would generate substantial quantities of membranogenic

  3. Self-assembled ultra small ZnO nanocrystals for dye-sensitized solar cell application

    SciTech Connect

    Patra, Astam K.; Dutta, Arghya; Bhaumik, Asim

    2014-07-01

    We demonstrate a facile chemical approach to produce self-assembled ultra-small mesoporous zinc oxide nanocrystals using sodium salicylate (SS) as a template under hydrothermal conditions. These ZnO nanomaterials have been successfully fabricated as a photoanode for the dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) in the presence of N719 dye and iodine–triiodide electrolyte. The structural features, crystallinity, purity, mesophase and morphology of the nanostructure ZnO are investigated by several characterization tools. N{sub 2} sorption analysis revealed high surface areas (203 m{sup 2} g{sup −1}) and narrow pore size distributions (5.1–5.4 nm) for different samples. The mesoporous structure and strong photoluminescence facilitates the high dye loading at the mesoscopic void spaces and light harvesting in DSSC. By utilizing this ultra-small ZnO photoelectrode with film thickness of about 7 μm in the DSSC with an open-circuit voltage (V{sub OC}) of 0.74 V, short-circuit current density (J{sub SC}) of 3.83 mA cm{sup −2} and an overall power conversion efficiency of 1.12% has been achieved. - Graphical abstract: Ultra-small ZnO nanocrystals have been synthesized with sodium salicylate as a template and using it as a photoanode in a dye-sensitized solar cell 1.12% power conversion efficiency has been observed. - Highlights: • Synthesis of self-assembled ultra-small mesoporous ZnO nanocrystals by using sodium salicylate as a template. • Mesoporous ZnO materials have high BET surface areas and void space. • ZnO nanoparticles serve as a photoanode for the dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC). • Using ZnO nanocrystals as photoelectrode power conversion efficiency of 1.12% has been achieved.

  4. Spatiotemporal Control of Supramolecular Self-Assembly and Function.

    PubMed

    Zhan, Jie; Cai, Yanbin; Ji, Shenglu; He, Shuangshuang; Cao, Yi; Ding, Dan; Wang, Ling; Yang, Zhimou

    2017-03-09

    The enzyme-triggered self-assembly of peptides has flourished in controlling the self-assembly kinetics and producing nanostructures that are typically inaccessible by conventional self-assembly pathways. However, the diffusion and nanoscale chemical gradient of self-assembling peptides generated by the enzyme also significantly affect the outcome of self-assembly, which has not been reported yet. In this work, we demonstrated for the first time a spatiotemporal control of enzyme-triggered peptide self-assembly. By simply adjusting the temperature, we could change both the catalytic activity of the enzyme of phosphatase and their aggregation states. The strategy kinetically controls the production rate of self-assembling peptides and spatially controls their distribution in the system, leading to the formation of nanoparticles at 37 °C and nanofibers at 4 °C. The nanofibers showed ∼10 times higher cellular uptake by 3T3 cells than the nanoparticles, thanks to their higher stability and more ordered structures. Using such spatiotemporal control, we could prepare optimized nanoprobes with low background fluorescence, rapid and high cellular uptake, and high sensitivity. We postulate that this strategy would be very useful in general for preparing self-assembled nanomaterials with controllable morphology and function.

  5. Supramolecular chemistry: Unexplored territory for self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beuerle, Florian

    2016-12-01

    Cage-like structures can self-assemble from suitable metal ions and organic linkers, but the size of the assemblies was limited. The surprise discovery of a new series of cages opens up fresh horizons for self-assembly. See Letter p.563

  6. Self-Assembly of Optical Molecules with Supramolecular Concepts

    PubMed Central

    Okamoto, Ken; Chithra, Parayalil; Richards, Gary J.; Hill, Jonathan P.; Ariga, Katsuhiko

    2009-01-01

    Fabrication of nano-sized objects is one of the most important issues in nanoscience and nanotechnology. Soft nanomaterials with flexible properties have been given much attention and can be obtained through bottom-up processing from functional molecules, where self-assembly based on supramolecular chemistry and designed assembly have become crucial processes and techniques. Among the various functional molecules, dyes have become important materials in certain areas of nanotechnology and their self-assembling behaviors have been actively researched. In this short review, we briefly introduce recent progress in self-assembly of optical molecules and dyes, based mainly on supramolecular concepts. The introduced examples are classified into four categories: self-assembly of (i) low-molecular-weight dyes and (ii) polymeric dyes and dye self-assembly (iii) in nanoscale architectures and (iv) at surfaces. PMID:19564931

  7. Challenges and breakthroughs in recent research on self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Ariga, Katsuhiko; Hill, Jonathan P; Lee, Michael V; Vinu, Ajayan; Charvet, Richard; Acharya, Somobrata

    2008-01-01

    The controlled fabrication of nanometer-scale objects is without doubt one of the central issues in current science and technology. However, existing fabrication techniques suffer from several disadvantages including size-restrictions and a general paucity of applicable materials. Because of this, the development of alternative approaches based on supramolecular self-assembly processes is anticipated as a breakthrough methodology. This review article aims to comprehensively summarize the salient aspects of self-assembly through the introduction of the recent challenges and breakthroughs in three categories: (i) types of self-assembly in bulk media; (ii) types of components for self-assembly in bulk media; and (iii) self-assembly at interfaces. PMID:27877935

  8. Robotics. Programmable self-assembly in a thousand-robot swarm.

    PubMed

    Rubenstein, Michael; Cornejo, Alejandro; Nagpal, Radhika

    2014-08-15

    Self-assembly enables nature to build complex forms, from multicellular organisms to complex animal structures such as flocks of birds, through the interaction of vast numbers of limited and unreliable individuals. Creating this ability in engineered systems poses challenges in the design of both algorithms and physical systems that can operate at such scales. We report a system that demonstrates programmable self-assembly of complex two-dimensional shapes with a thousand-robot swarm. This was enabled by creating autonomous robots designed to operate in large groups and to cooperate through local interactions and by developing a collective algorithm for shape formation that is highly robust to the variability and error characteristic of large-scale decentralized systems. This work advances the aim of creating artificial swarms with the capabilities of natural ones.

  9. Self-assembling chimeric polypeptide-doxorubicin conjugate nanoparticles that abolish tumours after a single injection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrew Mackay, J.; Chen, Mingnan; McDaniel, Jonathan R.; Liu, Wenge; Simnick, Andrew J.; Chilkoti, Ashutosh

    2009-12-01

    New strategies to self-assemble biocompatible materials into nanoscale, drug-loaded packages with improved therapeutic efficacy are needed for nanomedicine. To address this need, we developed artificial recombinant chimeric polypeptides (CPs) that spontaneously self-assemble into sub-100-nm-sized, near-monodisperse nanoparticles on conjugation of diverse hydrophobic molecules, including chemotherapeutics. These CPs consist of a biodegradable polypeptide that is attached to a short Cys-rich segment. Covalent modification of the Cys residues with a structurally diverse set of hydrophobic small molecules, including chemotherapeutics, leads to spontaneous formation of nanoparticles over a range of CP compositions and molecular weights. When used to deliver chemotherapeutics to a murine cancer model, CP nanoparticles have a fourfold higher maximum tolerated dose than free drug, and induce nearly complete tumour regression after a single dose. This simple strategy can promote co-assembly of drugs, imaging agents and targeting moieties into multifunctional nanomedicines.

  10. Synthesis of 1D Silica Nanostructures with Controllable Sizes Based on Short Anionic Peptide Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shengjie; Cai, Qingwei; Du, Mingxuan; Xue, Junyi; Xu, Hai

    2015-09-10

    Artificial synthesis of silica under benign conditions is usually achieved by using cationic organic matrices as templates while the anionic analogues have not received enough consideration, albeit they are also functioning in biosilica formation. In this work, we report the design and self-assembly of an anionic peptide amphiphile (I3E) and the use of its self-assemblies as templates to synthesize 1D silica nanostructures with tunable sizes. We show that short I3E readily formed long nanofibrils in aqueous solution via a hierarchical self-assembly process. By using APTES and TEOS as silica precursors, we found that the I3E nanofibrils templated the production of silica nanotubes with a wide size distribution, in which the silica size regulation was achieved by tuning the interactions among the peptide template and silicon species. These results clearly illustrate a facile method for generating silica nanomaterials based on anionic matrices.

  11. Solvent mediated self-assembly of solids

    SciTech Connect

    De Yoreo, J.; Wilson, W.D.; Palmore, T.

    1997-12-12

    Solvent-mediated crystallization represents a robust approach to self-assembly of nanostructures and microstructures. In organic systems, the relative ease with which the structure of hydrogen- bonded molecules can be manipulated allows for generation of a wide variety of nanoscale crystal structures. In living organisms, control over the micron-to-millimeter form of inorganic crystals is achieved through introduction of bio-organic molecules. The purpose of this proposal is to understand the interplay between solution chemistry, molecular structure, surface chemistry, and the processes of nucleation and crystal growth in solvent-mediated systems, with the goal of developing the atomic and molecular basis of a solvent-mediated self-assembly technology. We will achieve this purpose by: (1) utilizing an atomic force microscopy (AFM) approach that provides in situ, real time imaging during growth from solutions, (2) by modifying kinetic Monte Carlo (KMC) models to include solution-surface kinetics, (3) by introducing quantum chemistry (QC) calculations of the potentials of the relevant chemical species and the near-surface structure of the solution, and (4) by utilizing molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to identify the minimum energy pathways to the solid state. Our work will focus on two systems chosen to address both the manometer and micron-to-millimeter length scales of assembly, the family of 2,5- diketopiperazines (X-DKPs) and the system of CaCO{sub 3} with amino acids. Using AFM, we will record the evolution of surface morphology, critical lengths, step speeds, and step-step interactions as a function of supersaturation and temperature. In the case of the X-DKPs, these measurements will be repeated as the molecular structure of the growth unit is varied. In the case of CaCO{sub 3}, they will be performed as a function of solution chemistry including pH, ionic strength, and amino acid content. In addition, we will measure nucleation rates and orientations of

  12. Silica biomineralization via the self-assembly of helical biomolecules.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ben; Cao, Yuanyuan; Huang, Zhehao; Duan, Yingying; Che, Shunai

    2015-01-21

    The biomimetic synthesis of relevant silica materials using biological macromolecules as templates via silica biomineralization processes attract rapidly rising attention toward natural and artificial materials. Biomimetic synthesis studies are useful for improving the understanding of the formation mechanism of the hierarchical structures found in living organisms (such as diatoms and sponges) and for promoting significant developments in the biotechnology, nanotechnology and materials chemistry fields. Chirality is a ubiquitous phenomenon in nature and is an inherent feature of biomolecular components in organisms. Helical biomolecules, one of the most important types of chiral macromolecules, can self-assemble into multiple liquid-crystal structures and be used as biotemplates for silica biomineralization, which renders them particularly useful for fabricating complex silica materials under ambient conditions. Over the past two decades, many new silica materials with hierarchical structures and complex morphologies have been created using helical biomolecules. In this review, the developments in this field are described and the recent progress in silica biomineralization templating using several classes of helical biomolecules, including DNA, polypeptides, cellulose and rod-like viruses is summarized. Particular focus is placed on the formation mechanism of biomolecule-silica materials (BSMs) with hierarchical structures. Finally, current research challenges and future developments are discussed in the conclusion.

  13. Self-assembled ultra small ZnO nanocrystals for dye-sensitized solar cell application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patra, Astam K.; Dutta, Arghya; Bhaumik, Asim

    2014-07-01

    We demonstrate a facile chemical approach to produce self-assembled ultra-small mesoporous zinc oxide nanocrystals using sodium salicylate (SS) as a template under hydrothermal conditions. These ZnO nanomaterials have been successfully fabricated as a photoanode for the dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC) in the presence of N719 dye and iodine-triiodide electrolyte. The structural features, crystallinity, purity, mesophase and morphology of the nanostructure ZnO are investigated by several characterization tools. N2 sorption analysis revealed high surface areas (203 m2 g-1) and narrow pore size distributions (5.1-5.4 nm) for different samples. The mesoporous structure and strong photoluminescence facilitates the high dye loading at the mesoscopic void spaces and light harvesting in DSSC. By utilizing this ultra-small ZnO photoelectrode with film thickness of about 7 μm in the DSSC with an open-circuit voltage (VOC) of 0.74 V, short-circuit current density (JSC) of 3.83 mA cm-2 and an overall power conversion efficiency of 1.12% has been achieved.

  14. Strongly Coupled Plasmonic Modes on Macroscopic Areas via Template-Assisted Colloidal Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    We present ensembles of surface-ordered nanoparticle arrangements, which are formed by template-assisted self-assembly of monodisperse, protein-coated gold nanoparticles in wrinkle templates. Centimeter-squared areas of highly regular, linear assemblies with tunable line width are fabricated and their extinction cross sections can be characterized by conventional UV/vis/NIR spectroscopy. Modeling based on electrodynamic simulations shows a clear signature of strong plasmonic coupling with an interparticle spacing of 1–2 nm. We find evidence for well-defined plasmonic modes of quasi-infinite chains, such as resonance splitting and multiple radiant modes. Beyond elementary simulations on the individual chain level, we introduce an advanced model, which considers the chain length distribution as well as disorder. The step toward macroscopic sample areas not only opens perspectives for a range of applications in sensing, plasmonic light harvesting, surface enhanced spectroscopy, and information technology but also eases the investigation of hybridization and metamaterial effects fundamentally. PMID:25347293

  15. Controlling decay dynamics of quantum emitters with Plsmonic self assembly templates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Indukuri, S. R. K. Chaitanya; Basu, J. K.

    2015-03-01

    Controlling the emission of quantum dots by tailoring local density of states(LDOS) in self assembled plasmonic template. Using very small diameter gold (Au) spherical nanoantenna within a polymer tem plate randomly dispersed with quantum dots, we show how the photoluminescence intensity and lifetime anisotropy of these dots can be significantly enhanced through LDOS tuning. We also studied the effect of dispersion, wider range of geometric and spectral parameters bringing out the versatility of these functional plasmonic templates. We studied the effect of nano antenna distribution on radiative and non radiative decay rates in the templates. We demonstrated that the decay dynamics in the plasmonic templates can be controlled in a facile manner by changing the filling fraction of the Au nanoparticles. This polarization dependent anisotropic decay dynamics for the quantum emitters is determined by polarization dependent LDOS of the plasmonic templates as demonstrated by FDTD simulations. Our work provides a new method to achieve spontaneous emission intensity and anisotropy enhancement with nanoscale plasmon resonators for applications from controlled photon emitters to light harvesting. DST, India Nanomission.

  16. Bio-Photoelectrochemical Solar Cells Incorporating Reaction Center and Reaction Center Plus Light Harvesting Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yaghoubi, Houman

    onto Au electrodes via surface exposed cysteine residues. This resulted in photocurrent densities as large as ~600 nA cm-2 while still the incident photon to generated electron quantum efficiency was as low as %3 x 10-4. 2- The second approach is to immobilize wild type RCs of Rhodobacter sphaeroides on the surface of a Au underlying electrode using self-assembled monolayers of carboxylic acid terminated oligomers and cytochrome c charge mediating layers, with a preferential orientation from the primary electron donor site. This approach resulted in EQE of up to 0.06%, which showed 200 times efficiency improvement comparing to the first approach. In the third approach, instead of isolated protein complexes, RCs plus light harvesting (LH) complexes were employed for a better photon absorption. Direct attachment of RC-LH1 complexes on Au working electrodes, resulted in 0.21% EQE which showed 3.5 times efficiency improvement over the second approach (700 times higher than the first approach). The main impact of this work is the harnessing of biological RCs for efficient energy harvesting in man-made structures. Specifically, the results in this work will advance the application of RCs in devices for energy harvesting and will enable a better understanding of bio and nanomaterial interfaces, thereby advancing the application of biological materials in electronic devices. At the end, this work offers general guidelines that can serve to improve the performance of bio-hybrid solar cells.

  17. Plasmon-enhanced light harvesting of chlorophylls on near-percolating silver films via one-photon anti-Stokes upconversion.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ya-Lan; Nan, Fan; Liu, Xiao-Li; Zhou, Li; Peng, Xiao-Niu; Zhou, Zhang-Kai; Yu, Ying; Hao, Zhong-Hua; Wu, Yan; Zhang, Wei; Wang, Qu-Quan; Zhang, Zhenyu

    2013-01-01

    There exists a wealth of means of efficient utilization of solar energy in nature, with photosynthesis of chlorophylls as a prime example. Separately, artificially structured plasmonic materials are versatile in light harvesting and energy conversion. Using a simple and scalable design of near-percolating silver nanostructures, we demonstrate that the light-harvesting efficiency of chlorophylls can be drastically enhanced by tuning the plasmon frequency of the constituent silver nanoparticles to coincide with the maximal photon flux of sunlight. In particular, we show that the photon upconversion efficiency can be readily enhanced by over 20 folds, with the room-temperature fluorescence quantum yield increased by a factor of 2.63. The underlying mechanism for the upconversion enhancement is attributed to a one-electron-per-photon anti-Stokes process, involving absorption of a characteristic phonon mode of the chlorophylls. These findings suggest that chlorophylls can serve as molecular building blocks for high-efficiency light harvesting and solar energy conversion.

  18. Dissipative adaptation in driven self-assembly.

    PubMed

    England, Jeremy L

    2015-11-01

    In a collection of assembling particles that is allowed to reach thermal equilibrium, the energy of a given microscopic arrangement and the probability of observing the system in that arrangement obey a simple exponential relationship known as the Boltzmann distribution. Once the same thermally fluctuating particles are driven away from equilibrium by forces that do work on the system over time, however, it becomes significantly more challenging to relate the likelihood of a given outcome to familiar thermodynamic quantities. Nonetheless, it has long been appreciated that developing a sound and general understanding of the thermodynamics of such non-equilibrium scenarios could ultimately enable us to control and imitate the marvellous successes that living things achieve in driven self-assembly. Here, I suggest that such a theoretical understanding may at last be emerging, and trace its development from historic first steps to more recent discoveries. Focusing on these newer results, I propose that they imply a general thermodynamic mechanism for self-organization via dissipation of absorbed work that may be applicable in a broad class of driven many-body systems.

  19. Electronically Guided Self Assembly within Quantum Corrals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao, Rongxing; Miao, Bingfeng; Zhong, Zhangfeng; Sun, Liang; You, Biao; Zhang, Wei; Wu, Di; Hu, An; Bader, Samuel; Ding, Haifeng; Center Collaboration; Low Dimensional Magnetism Team

    2013-03-01

    A grand challenge of nanoscience is to master the control of structure and properties in order to go beyond present day functionality. The creation of nanostructures via atom manipulation by means of a scanning probe represents one of the great achievements of the nano era. Here we build on this achievement to self-assemble nanostructures within quantum corrals. We constructed circular and triangular Fe quantum corrals on Ag(111) substrate via STM manipulation and studied the quantum confinement of electronic states and the diffusion of Gd atoms inside the corrals. Statistical results reveal the motion of the Gd atoms forming several individual orbits that are closely related to the local density of states. We experimentally demonstrate that different self-organized Gd atomic structures are formed within 30-nm circular and triangular Fe quantum corrals with a step-by-step guiding process. The findings demonstrate that quantum confinement can be used to engineer atomic structures and atom diffusion. And 30-nm resolution can be reached by means of advanced lithography. Adding quantum engineering to augment it opens new possibilities for local functionality design down to the atomic scale. Work at Nanjing is supported by the State Key Program for Basic Research of China (Grant No. 2010CB923401), NSFC (Grants Nos. 10974087, 10834001, and 11023002) and PAPD.

  20. Self-assembled nanostructures via electrospraying

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jayasinghe, S. N.

    2006-07-01

    A concentrated nanoparticulate-based ethylene glycol suspension was prepared and electrosprayed at optimum and stable cone-jet mode conditions. Using laser spectroscopy, the droplets were measured and found to range within ∼0.23-3.8 μm. In parallel to spectroscopy-assisted sizing, a volume equivalence route for estimating droplet sizes was carried out by measuring contact angles and diameters of the deposits. The electrosprayed nanosuspension relics were examined using optical and transmission electron microscopy. These deposits were further characterized using energy-dispersive X-rays and selected area electron diffraction. Simultaneously deposits were formed by a controlled route through needle deposition without the presence of an electric field. The structures formed in this non-electric field driven route are compared with those formed with electric fields. Thus, elucidating electrosprays as a competing nanofabrication route for forming self-assemblies with a wide range of nanomaterials in the nanoscale for top-down based bottom-up assembly of structures.

  1. Initial condition of stochastic self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Jason K.; Sindi, Suzanne S.

    2016-02-01

    The formation of a stable protein aggregate is regarded as the rate limiting step in the establishment of prion diseases. In these systems, once aggregates reach a critical size the growth process accelerates and thus the waiting time until the appearance of the first critically sized aggregate is a key determinant of disease onset. In addition to prion diseases, aggregation and nucleation is a central step of many physical, chemical, and biological process. Previous studies have examined the first-arrival time at a critical nucleus size during homogeneous self-assembly under the assumption that at time t =0 the system was in the all-monomer state. However, in order to compare to in vivo biological experiments where protein constituents inherited by a newly born cell likely contain intermediate aggregates, other possibilities must be considered. We consider one such possibility by conditioning the unique ergodic size distribution on subcritical aggregate sizes; this least-informed distribution is then used as an initial condition. We make the claim that this initial condition carries fewer assumptions than an all-monomer one and verify that it can yield significantly different averaged waiting times relative to the all-monomer condition under various models of assembly.

  2. Electrostatic self-assembly of biomolecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olvera de La Cruz, Monica

    2015-03-01

    Charged filaments and membranes are natural structures abundant in cell media. In this talk we discuss the assembly of amphiphiles into biocompatible fibers, ribbons and membranes. We describe one- and two-dimensional assemblies that undergo re-entrant transitions in crystalline packing in response to changes in the solution pH and/or salt concentration resulting in different mesoscale morphologies and properties. In the case of one-dimensional structures, we discuss self-assembled amphiphiles into highly charged nanofibers in water that order into two-dimensional crystals. These fibers of about 6 nm cross-sectional diameter form crystalline arrays with inter-fiber spacings of up to 130 nm. Solution concentration and temperature can be adjusted to control the inter-fiber spacings. The addition of salt destroys crystal packing, indicating that electrostatic repulsions are necessary for the observed ordering. We describe the crystallization of bundles of filament networks interacting via long-range repulsions in confinement by a phenomenological model. Two distinct crystallization mechanisms in the short and large screening length regimes are discussed and the phase diagram is obtained. Simulation of large bundles predicts the existence of topological defects among bundled filaments. Crystallization processes driven by electrostatic attractions are also discussed. Funded by Center for Bio-Inspired Energy Science (CBES), which is an Energy Frontier Research Center funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences under Award Number DE-SC0000989.

  3. Surfactant mediated polyelectrolyte self-assembly

    DOE PAGES

    Goswami, Monojoy; Borreguero Calvo, Jose M.; Pincus, Phillip A.; ...

    2015-11-25

    Self-assembly and dynamics of polyelectrolyte (PE) surfactant complex (PES) is investigated using molecular dynamics simulations. The complexation is systematically studied for five different PE backbone charge densities. At a fixed surfactant concentration the PES complexation exhibits pearl-necklace to agglomerated double spherical structures with a PE chain decorating the surfactant micelles. The counterions do not condense on the complex, but are released in the medium with a random distribution. The relaxation dynamics for three different length scales, polymer chain, segmental and monomer, show distinct features of the charge and neutral species; the counterions are fastest followed by the PE chain andmore » surfactants. The surfactant heads and tails have the slowest relaxation due to their restricted movement inside the agglomerated structure. At the shortest length scale, all the charge and neutral species show similar relaxation dynamics confirming Rouse behavior at monomer length scales. Overall, the present study highlights the structure-property relationship for polymer-surfactant complexation. These results will help improve the understanding of PES complex and should aid in the design of better materials for future applications.« less

  4. Surfactant mediated polyelectrolyte self-assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Goswami, Monojoy; Borreguero Calvo, Jose M.; Pincus, Phillip A.; Sumpter, Bobby G.

    2015-11-25

    Self-assembly and dynamics of polyelectrolyte (PE) surfactant complex (PES) is investigated using molecular dynamics simulations. The complexation is systematically studied for five different PE backbone charge densities. At a fixed surfactant concentration the PES complexation exhibits pearl-necklace to agglomerated double spherical structures with a PE chain decorating the surfactant micelles. The counterions do not condense on the complex, but are released in the medium with a random distribution. The relaxation dynamics for three different length scales, polymer chain, segmental and monomer, show distinct features of the charge and neutral species; the counterions are fastest followed by the PE chain and surfactants. The surfactant heads and tails have the slowest relaxation due to their restricted movement inside the agglomerated structure. At the shortest length scale, all the charge and neutral species show similar relaxation dynamics confirming Rouse behavior at monomer length scales. Overall, the present study highlights the structure-property relationship for polymer-surfactant complexation. These results will help improve the understanding of PES complex and should aid in the design of better materials for future applications.

  5. Stochastic self-assembly of incommensurate clusters.

    PubMed

    D'Orsogna, M R; Lakatos, G; Chou, T

    2012-02-28

    Nucleation and molecular aggregation are important processes in numerous physical and biological systems. In many applications, these processes often take place in confined spaces, involving a finite number of particles. Analogous to treatments of stochastic chemical reactions, we examine the classic problem of homogeneous nucleation and self-assembly by deriving and analyzing a fully discrete stochastic master equation. We enumerate the highest probability steady states, and derive exact analytical formulae for quenched and equilibrium mean cluster size distributions. Upon comparison with results obtained from the associated mass-action Becker-Döring equations, we find striking differences between the two corresponding equilibrium mean cluster concentrations. These differences depend primarily on the divisibility of the total available mass by the maximum allowed cluster size, and the remainder. When such mass "incommensurability" arises, a single remainder particle can "emulsify" the system by significantly broadening the equilibrium mean cluster size distribution. This discreteness-induced broadening effect is periodic in the total mass of the system but arises even when the system size is asymptotically large, provided the ratio of the total mass to the maximum cluster size is finite. Ironically, classic mass-action equations are fairly accurate in the coarsening regime, before equilibrium is reached, despite the presence of large stochastic fluctuations found via kinetic Monte-Carlo simulations. Our findings define a new scaling regime in which results from classic mass-action theories are qualitatively inaccurate, even in the limit of large total system size.

  6. Stochastic self-assembly of incommensurate clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Orsogna, M. R.; Lakatos, G.; Chou, T.

    2012-02-01

    Nucleation and molecular aggregation are important processes in numerous physical and biological systems. In many applications, these processes often take place in confined spaces, involving a finite number of particles. Analogous to treatments of stochastic chemical reactions, we examine the classic problem of homogeneous nucleation and self-assembly by deriving and analyzing a fully discrete stochastic master equation. We enumerate the highest probability steady states, and derive exact analytical formulae for quenched and equilibrium mean cluster size distributions. Upon comparison with results obtained from the associated mass-action Becker-Döring equations, we find striking differences between the two corresponding equilibrium mean cluster concentrations. These differences depend primarily on the divisibility of the total available mass by the maximum allowed cluster size, and the remainder. When such mass "incommensurability" arises, a single remainder particle can "emulsify" the system by significantly broadening the equilibrium mean cluster size distribution. This discreteness-induced broadening effect is periodic in the total mass of the system but arises even when the system size is asymptotically large, provided the ratio of the total mass to the maximum cluster size is finite. Ironically, classic mass-action equations are fairly accurate in the coarsening regime, before equilibrium is reached, despite the presence of large stochastic fluctuations found via kinetic Monte-Carlo simulations. Our findings define a new scaling regime in which results from classic mass-action theories are qualitatively inaccurate, even in the limit of large total system size.

  7. Stochastic self-assembly of incommensurate clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DÓ Rsogna, Maria; Lakatos, Greg; Chou, Tom

    2013-03-01

    We examine the classic problem of homogeneous nucleation and self-assembly by deriving and analyzing a fully discrete stochastic master equation. We enumerate the highest probability steady-states, and derive exact analytical formulae for quenched and equilibrium mean cluster size distributions. Upon comparison with results obtained from the associated the mass-action Becker-Döring (BD) equations, we find striking differences between the two corresponding equilibrium mean cluster concentrations. These differences depend primarily on the divisibility of the total available mass by the maximum allowed cluster size, and the remainder. When such mass ``incommensurability'' arises, a single remainder particle can ``emulsify'' the system by significantly broadening the equilibrium mean cluster size distribution. This discreteness-induced broadening effect is periodic in the total mass of the system but arises even when the system size is asymptotically large, provided the ratio of the total mass to the maximum cluster size is finite. Our findings define a new scaling regime in which results from classic mass-action theories are qualitatively inaccurate, even in the limit of large total system size. This work supported by NSF DMS-1021818 and DMS-1021850

  8. What promotes derected self assembly (DSA)?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakagawa, S. T.

    2016-09-01

    A low-energy electron beam (EB) can create self-interstitial atoms (SIA) in a solid and can cause directed self-assembly (DSA), e.g. {3 1 1}SIA platelets in c-Si. The crystalline structure of this planar defect is known from experiment to be made up of SIAs that form well aligned <1 1 0> atomic rows on each (3 1 1) plane. To simulate the experiment we distributed Frenkel pairs (FP) randomly in bulk c-Si. Then making use of a molecular dynamic (MD) simulation, we have reproduced the experimental result, where SIAs are trapped at metastable sites in bulk. With increasing pre-doped FP concentration, the number of SIAs that participate in DSA tends to be increased but soon slightly supressed. On the other hand, when the FP concentration is less than 3%, a cooperative motion of target atoms was characterized from the long-range-order (LRO) parameter. Here we investigated the correlation between DSA and that cooperative motion, by adding a case of intrinsic c-Si. We confirmed that the cooperative motion slightly promote DSA by assisting migration of SIAs toward metastable sites as long as the FP concentration is less than 3%, however, it is essentially independent of DSA.

  9. Self-assembly programming of DNA polyominoes.

    PubMed

    Ong, Hui San; Syafiq-Rahim, Mohd; Kasim, Noor Hayaty Abu; Firdaus-Raih, Mohd; Ramlan, Effirul Ikhwan

    2016-10-20

    Fabrication of functional DNA nanostructures operating at a cellular level has been accomplished through molecular programming techniques such as DNA origami and single-stranded tiles (SST). During implementation, restrictive and constraint dependent designs are enforced to ensure conformity is attainable. We propose a concept of DNA polyominoes that promotes flexibility in molecular programming. The fabrication of complex structures is achieved through self-assembly of distinct heterogeneous shapes (i.e., self-organised optimisation among competing DNA basic shapes) with total flexibility during the design and assembly phases. In this study, the plausibility of the approach is validated using the formation of multiple 3×4 DNA network fabricated from five basic DNA shapes with distinct configurations (monomino, tromino and tetrominoes). Computational tools to aid the design of compatible DNA shapes and the structure assembly assessment are presented. The formations of the desired structures were validated using Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) imagery. Five 3×4 DNA networks were successfully constructed using combinatorics of these five distinct DNA heterogeneous shapes. Our findings revealed that the construction of DNA supra-structures could be achieved using a more natural-like orchestration as compared to the rigid and restrictive conventional approaches adopted previously.

  10. Self-assembling holographic biosensors and biocomputers.

    SciTech Connect

    Light, Yooli Kim; Bachand, George David (Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM); Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Trent, Amanda M. (Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM)

    2006-05-01

    We present concepts for self-assembly of diffractive optics with potential uses in biosensors and biocomputers. The simplest such optics, diffraction gratings, can potentially be made from chemically-stabilized microtubules migrating on nanopatterned tracks of the motor protein kinesin. We discuss the fabrication challenges involved in patterning sub-micron-scale structures with proteins that must be maintained in aqueous buffers to preserve their activity. A novel strategy is presented that employs dry contact printing onto glass-supported amino-silane monolayers of heterobifunctional crosslinkers, followed by solid-state reactions of these cross-linkers, to graft patterns of reactive groups onto the surface. Successive solution-phase addition of cysteine-mutant proteins and amine-reactive polyethylene glycol allows assembly of features onto the printed patterns. We present data from initial experiments showing successful micro- and nanopatterning of lines of single-cysteine mutants of kinesin interleaved with lines of polyethylene, indicating that this strategy can be employed to arrays of features with resolutions suitable for gratings.

  11. Self-assembly of smallest magnetic particles

    PubMed Central

    Mehdizadeh Taheri, Sara; Michaelis, Maria; Friedrich, Thomas; Förster, Beate; Drechsler, Markus; Römer, Florian M.; Bösecke, Peter; Narayanan, Theyencheri; Weber, Birgit; Rehberg, Ingo; Rosenfeldt, Sabine; Förster, Stephan

    2015-01-01

    The assembly of tiny magnetic particles in external magnetic fields is important for many applications ranging from data storage to medical technologies. The development of ever smaller magnetic structures is restricted by a size limit, where the particles are just barely magnetic. For such particles we report the discovery of a kind of solution assembly hitherto unobserved, to our knowledge. The fact that the assembly occurs in solution is very relevant for applications, where magnetic nanoparticles are either solution-processed or are used in liquid biological environments. Induced by an external magnetic field, nanocubes spontaneously assemble into 1D chains, 2D monolayer sheets, and large 3D cuboids with almost perfect internal ordering. The self-assembly of the nanocubes can be elucidated considering the dipole–dipole interaction of small superparamagnetic particles. Complex 3D geometrical arrangements of the nanodipoles are obtained under the assumption that the orientation of magnetization is freely adjustable within the superlattice and tends to minimize the binding energy. On that basis the magnetic moment of the cuboids can be explained. PMID:26554000

  12. Functional Self-Assembled Nanofibers by Electrospinning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greiner, A.; Wendorff, J. H.

    Electrospinning constitutes a unique technique for the production of nanofibers with diameters down to the range of a few nanometers. In strong contrast to conventional fiber producing techniques, it relies on self-assembly processes driven by the Coulomb interactions between charged elements of the fluids to be spun to nanofibers. The transition from a macroscopic fluid object such as a droplet emerging from a die to solid nanofibers is controlled by a set of complex physical instability processes. They give rise to extremely high extensional deformations and strain rates during fiber formation causing among others a high orientational order in the nanofibers as well as enhanced mechanical properties. Electrospinning is predominantly applied to polymer based materials including natural and synthetic polymers, but, more recently, its use has been extended towards the production of metal, ceramic and glass nanofibers exploiting precursor routes. The nanofibers can be functionalized during electrospinning by introducing pores, fractal surfaces, by incorporating functional elements such as catalysts, quantum dots, drugs, enzymes or even bacteria. The production of individual fibers, random nonwovens, or orientationally highly ordered nonwovens is achieved by an appropriate selection of electrode configurations. Broad areas of application exist in Material and Life Sciences for such nanofibers, including not only optoelectronics, sensorics, catalysis, textiles, high efficiency filters, fiber reinforcement but also tissue engineering, drug delivery, and wound healing. The basic electrospinning process has more recently been extended towards compound co-electrospinning and precision deposition electrospinning to further broaden accessible fiber architectures and potential areas of application.

  13. Self-assembly and interactions of biomimetic thin films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Handa, Hitesh

    Bilayer lipid membranes create the natural environment for the immobilization of functional proteins and have been used as a model for understanding structure and properties of cell membranes. The development of biomimetic surfaces requires in depth knowledge of surface science, self-assembly, immobilization techniques, nanofabrication, biomolecular interactions and analytical techniques. This research is focused on synthesizing and characterizing biomimetic artificial surfaces for fundamental studies in membrane structure and better understanding of specific and non-specific interactions. The other main focus is on surface engineering of self-assembled, nanostructured interfaces that mimic cell membranes. These structures provide a powerful bottom-up approach to the studies of the structure and functionality of cell membranes and their interactions with other molecules. One of the advantages of this approach is that the complexity of the system can be controlled and gradually increased to add functionalities. This dissertation provides a first single molecule force measurement of the specific interactions between Salmonella typhimurium and P22 bacteriophage. This dissertation also provides a novel model system for the confined crystallization of drug molecules such as aspirin using the concept of phospholipid bilayer assembly at surfaces. The results will impact the development of biosensors and drug delivery. The defense will focus on the preparation and bio-recognition interactions between a monolayer of bacteriophage P22, covalently bound to glass substrates through a bifunctional cross linker 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane, and the outer membrane of Salmonella, lipopolysaccharides (LPS). The LPS bilayer was deposited on poly (ethylenimine)-modified mica from their sonicated unilamellar vesicle solution. The specific binding of Salmonella typhimurium to the phage monolayer was studied by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and atomic force microscopy (AFM

  14. Self-assembled single-crystal silicon circuits on plastic.

    PubMed

    Stauth, Sean A; Parviz, Babak A

    2006-09-19

    We demonstrate the use of self-assembly for the integration of freestanding micrometer-scale components, including single-crystal, silicon field-effect transistors (FETs) and diffusion resistors, onto flexible plastic substrates. Preferential self-assembly of multiple microcomponent types onto a common platform is achieved through complementary shape recognition and aided by capillary, fluidic, and gravitational forces. We outline a microfabrication process that yields single-crystal, silicon FETs in a freestanding, powder-like collection for use with self-assembly. Demonstrations of self-assembled FETs on plastic include logic inverters and measured electron mobility of 592 cm2/V-s. Finally, we extend the self-assembly process to substrates each containing 10,000 binding sites and realize 97% self-assembly yield within 25 min for 100-microm-sized elements. High-yield self-assembly of micrometer-scale functional devices as outlined here provides a powerful approach for production of macroelectronic systems.

  15. Mussel-inspired plasmonic nanohybrids for light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Lee, Minah; Kim, Jong Uk; Lee, Joon Seok; Lee, Byung Il; Shin, Jonghwa; Park, Chan Beum

    2014-07-09

    Core-shell plasmonic nanohybrids are synthesized through a simple solutionbased process utilizing mussel-inspired polydopamine (PDA). The multi-purpose PDA not only facilitates plasmonic metal formation, but also serves as a scaffold to incorporate photosensitizers around the metal cores, as well as an adhesive between the nanohybrids and the substrate. The resulting plasmonic assembly exhibits highly enhanced light absorption in photo catalytic systems to augment artificial photosynthesis.

  16. Insight into the Structure of Light Harvesting Complex II and its Stabilization in Detergent Solution

    SciTech Connect

    Cardoso, Mateus B; Smolensky, Dmitriy; Heller, William T; O'Neill, Hugh Michael

    2009-01-01

    The structure of spinach light-harvesting complex II (LHC II), stabilized in a solution of the detergent n-octyl-{beta}-d-glucoside (BOG), was investigated by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). Physicochemical characterization of the isolated complex indicated that it was pure (>95%) and also in its native trimeric state. SANS with contrast variation was used to investigate the properties of the protein-detergent complex at three different H{sub 2}O/D{sub 2}O contrast match points, enabling the scattering properties of the protein and detergent to be investigated independently. The topological shape of LHC II, determined using ab initio shape restoration methods from the SANS data at the contrast match point of BOG, was consistent with the X-ray crystallographic structure of LHC II (Liu et al. Nature 2004 428, 287-292). The interactions of the protein and detergent were investigated at the contrast match point for the protein and also in 100% D{sub 2}O. The data suggested that BOG micelle structure was altered by its interaction with LHC II, but large aggregate structures were not formed. Indirect Fourier transform analysis of the LHC II/BOG scattering curves showed that the increase in the maximum dimension of the protein-detergent complex was consistent with the presence of a monolayer of detergent surrounding the protein. A model of the LHC II/BOG complex was generated to interpret the measurements made in 100% D{sub 2}O. This model adequately reproduced the overall size of the LHC II/BOG complex, but demonstrated that the detergent does not have a highly regular shape that surrounds the hydrophobic periphery of LHC II. In addition to demonstrating that natively structured LHC II can be produced for functional characterization and for use in artificial solar energy applications, the analysis and modeling approaches described here can be used for characterizing detergent-associated {alpha}-helical transmembrane proteins.

  17. Intrinsic defect formation in peptide self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Li; Zhao, Yurong; Xu, Hai; Wang, Yanting

    2015-07-01

    In contrast to extensively studied defects in traditional materials, we report here a systematic investigation of the formation mechanism of intrinsic defects in self-assembled peptide nanostructures. The Monte Carlo simulations with our simplified dynamic hierarchical model revealed that the symmetry breaking of layer bending mode at the two ends during morphological transformation is responsible for intrinsic defect formation, whose microscopic origin is the mismatch between layer stacking along the side-chain direction and layer growth along the hydrogen bond direction. Moreover, defect formation does not affect the chirality of the self-assembled structure, which is determined by the initial steps of the peptide self-assembly process.

  18. Magnetic manipulation of self-assembled colloidal asters.

    SciTech Connect

    Snezhko, A.; Aranson, I. S.

    2011-09-01

    Self-assembled materials must actively consume energy and remain out of equilibrium to support structural complexity and functional diversity. Here we show that a magnetic colloidal suspension confined at the interface between two immiscible liquids and energized by an alternating magnetic field dynamically self-assembles into localized asters and arrays of asters, which exhibit locomotion and shape change. By controlling a small external magnetic field applied parallel to the interface, we show that asters can capture, transport, and position target microparticles. The ability to manipulate colloidal structures is crucial for the further development of self-assembled microrobots

  19. Magnetic manipulation of self-assembled colloidal asters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snezhko, Alexey; Aranson, Igor S.

    2011-09-01

    Self-assembled materials must actively consume energy and remain out of equilibrium to support structural complexity and functional diversity. Here we show that a magnetic colloidal suspension confined at the interface between two immiscible liquids and energized by an alternating magnetic field dynamically self-assembles into localized asters and arrays of asters, which exhibit locomotion and shape change. By controlling a small external magnetic field applied parallel to the interface, we show that asters can capture, transport, and position target microparticles. The ability to manipulate colloidal structures is crucial for the further development of self-assembled microrobots.

  20. Magnetic manipulation of self-assembled colloidal asters.

    PubMed

    Snezhko, Alexey; Aranson, Igor S

    2011-08-07

    Self-assembled materials must actively consume energy and remain out of equilibrium to support structural complexity and functional diversity. Here we show that a magnetic colloidal suspension confined at the interface between two immiscible liquids and energized by an alternating magnetic field dynamically self-assembles into localized asters and arrays of asters, which exhibit locomotion and shape change. By controlling a small external magnetic field applied parallel to the interface, we show that asters can capture, transport, and position target microparticles. The ability to manipulate colloidal structures is crucial for the further development of self-assembled microrobots.

  1. Functional self-assembled lipidic systems derived from renewable resources.

    PubMed

    Silverman, Julian R; Samateh, Malick; John, George

    2016-01-01

    Self-assembled lipidic amphiphile systems can create a variety of multi-functional soft materials with value-added properties. When employing natural reagents and following biocatalytic syntheses, self-assembling monomers may be inherently designed for degradation, making them potential alternatives to conventional and persistent polymers. By using non-covalent forces, self-assembled amphiphiles can form nanotubes, fibers, and other stimuli responsive architectures prime for further applied research and incorporation into commercial products. By viewing these lipid derivatives under a lens of green principles, there is the hope that in developing a structure-function relationship and functional smart materials that research may remain safe, economic, and efficient.

  2. Dynamic self-assembly of 'living' polymeric chains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Binghui; Shi, Yunfeng

    2017-01-01

    We report a dynamic self-assembly system of 'living' polymeric chains sustained by chemistry using reactive molecular dynamics simulations. The linear polymeric chains consist of self-assembled nanoparticles connected by metastable linker molecules. As such, the polymeric chains, once assembled, undergo spontaneous dissociation driven by thermodynamics. However, with a continuous supply of linker molecules and the stored chemical energy therein, the polymeric chains can survive and maintain a steady state averaged chain length. These dynamically self-assembled polymeric chains are analogous to biological systems that both are thermodynamically metastable, yet dynamically stable upon continuous influx of matter and energy.

  3. Colloidosome like structures: self-assembly of silica microrods

    DOE PAGES

    Datskos, P.; Polizos, G.; Bhandari, M.; ...

    2016-03-07

    Self-assembly of one-dimensional structures is attracting a great deal of interest because assembled structures can provide better properties compared to individual building blocks. We demonstrate silica microrod self-assembly by exploiting Pickering emulsion based strategy. Micron-sized silica rods were synthesized employing previously reported methods based on polyvinylpyrrolidone/ pentanol emulsion droplets. Moreover, rods self-assembled to make structures in the range of z10 40 mm. Smooth rods assembled better than segmented rods. Finally, the assembled structures were bonded by weak van der Waals forces.

  4. Self-assembly in block polyelectrolytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Shuang; Vishnyakov, Aleksey; Neimark, Alexander V.

    2011-02-01

    The self-consistent field theory (SCFT) complemented with the Poisson-Boltzmann equation is employed to explore self-assembly of polyelectrolyte copolymers composed of charged blocks A and neutral blocks B. We have extended SCFT to dissociating triblock copolymers and demonstrated our approach on three characteristic examples: (1) diblock copolymer (AB) melt, (2) symmetric triblock copolymer (ABA) melt, (3) triblock copolymer (ABA) solution with added electrolyte. For copolymer melts, we varied the composition (that is, the total fraction of A-segments in the system) and the charge density on A blocks and calculated the phase diagram that contains ordered mesophases of lamellar, gyroid, hexagonal, and bcc symmetries, as well as the uniform disordered phase. The phase diagram of charged block copolymer melts in the charge density - system composition coordinates is similar to the classical phase diagram of neutral block copolymer melts, where the composition and the Flory mismatch interaction parameter χ _{AB} are used as variables. We found that the transitions between the polyelectrolyte mesophases with the increase of charge density occur in the same sequence, from lamellar to gyroid to hexagonal to bcc to disordered morphologies, as the mesophase transitions for neutral diblocks with the decrease of χ _{AB}. In a certain range of compositions, the phase diagram for charged triblock copolymers exhibits unexpected features, allowing for transitions from hexagonal to gyroid to lamellar mesophases as the charge density increases. Triblock polyelectrolyte solutions were studied by varying the charge density and solvent concentration at a fixed copolymer composition. Transitions from lamellar to gyroid and gyroid to hexagonal morphologies were observed at lower polymer concentrations than the respective transitions in the similar neutral copolymer, indicating a substantial influence of the charge density on phase behavior.

  5. Self assembly: An approach to terascale integration

    SciTech Connect

    Singer, S.

    1993-09-01

    Surely one of the most remarkable accomplishments of modern times has been the miniaturization of electronic components, starting with discrete transistors and leading to Very Large Scale Integrated (VLSI) Circuits which will soon contain almost 100 million components in a few square centimeters. It led to an information processing industry that fuels almost every aspect of industrial societies and that has brought manifold benefits to their citizens. Although continuation of the miniaturization process is likely to produce even greater benefits, many experts are concerned that extrapolation of traditional silicon VLSI techniques will meet with increasingly severe difficulties. Some of these are fundamental in nature, e. g., granularity and fluctuations in semiconductors and interconnects and proximity effects such as tunneling. The first major difficulty to be encountered will be a rising cost of products due to increased complexity and difficulty of manufacturing and assembly. Such difficulties are likely to be seen in about 10 years when minimum component sizes are expected to decrease below 0.15--0.2 {mu}m. If alternatives to present VLSI techniques are to be available when needed, work on them must start now. At Los Alamos, we are exploring the feasibility of ultrasmall wires and switches that self-assemble themselves into computing elements and circuits. Their operation is based on the quantum properties of nanometer scale molecular clusters. This paper will describe our efforts in the development of these components and will summarize our work in four areas: (1) the development of conducting molecular wires, (2) conducting nanoparticle wires and switches based on the Coulomb Blockade principle, (3) the development of advanced architectures that benefit from the use of such components and that significantly advance the art of high performance computing, and (4) the development of novel methods for attaining sub-Angstrom 3-D non-destructive imaging.

  6. Electronic coherence lineshapes reveal hidden excitonic correlations in photosynthetic light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Wong, Cathy Y; Alvey, Richard M; Turner, Daniel B; Wilk, Krystyna E; Bryant, Donald A; Curmi, Paul M G; Silbey, Robert J; Scholes, Gregory D

    2012-03-25

    The effective absorption cross-section of a molecule (acceptor) can be greatly increased by associating it with a cluster of molecules that absorb light and transfer the excitation energy to the acceptor molecule. The basic mechanism of such light harvesting by Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) is well established, but recent experiments have revealed a new feature whereby excitation is coherently shared among donor and acceptor molecules during FRET. In the present study, two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy was used to examine energy transfer at ambient temperature in a naturally occurring light-harvesting protein (PE545 of the marine cryptophyte alga Rhodomonas sp. strain CS24). Quantum beating was observed across a range of excitation frequencies. The shapes of those features in the two-dimensional spectra were examined. Through simulations, we show that two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy provides a probe of the adiabaticity of the free energy landscape underlying light harvesting.

  7. Mixed-organic-cation perovskite photovoltaics for enhanced solar-light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Pellet, Norman; Gao, Peng; Gregori, Giuliano; Yang, Tae-Youl; Nazeeruddin, Mohammad K; Maier, Joachim; Grätzel, Michael

    2014-03-17

    Hybrid organic-inorganic lead halide perovskite APbX3 pigments, such as methylammonium lead iodide, have recently emerged as excellent light harvesters in solid-state mesoscopic solar cells. An important target for the further improvement of the performance of perovskite-based photovoltaics is to extend their optical-absorption onset further into the red to enhance solar-light harvesting. Herein, we show that this goal can be reached by using a mixture of formamidinium (HN=CHNH3 (+), FA) and methylammonium (CH3 NH3 (+), MA) cations in the A position of the APbI3 perovskite structure. This combination leads to an enhanced short-circuit current and thus superior devices to those based on only CH3 NH3 (+). This concept has not been applied previously in perovskite-based solar cells. It shows great potential as a versatile tool to tune the structural, electrical, and optoelectronic properties of the light-harvesting materials.

  8. Regulating the Energy Flow in a Cyanobacterial Light-Harvesting Antenna Complex.

    PubMed

    Eisenberg, Ido; Caycedo-Soler, Felipe; Harris, Dvir; Yochelis, Shira; Huelga, Susana F; Plenio, Martin B; Adir, Noam; Keren, Nir; Paltiel, Yossi

    2017-02-16

    Photosynthetic organisms harvest light energy, utilizing the absorption and energy-transfer properties of protein-bound chromophores. Controlling the harvesting efficiency is critical for the optimal function of the photosynthetic apparatus. Here, we show that the cyanobacterial light-harvesting antenna complex may be able to regulate the flow of energy to switch reversibly from efficient energy conversion to photoprotective quenching via a structural change. We isolated cyanobacterial light-harvesting proteins, phycocyanin and allophycocyanin, and measured their optical properties in solution and in an aggregated-desiccated state. The results indicate that energy band structures are changed, generating a switch between the two modes of operation, exciton transfer and quenching, achieved without dedicated carotenoid quenchers. This flexibility can contribute greatly to the large dynamic range of cyanobacterial light-harvesting systems.

  9. Cooperative Self-Assembly Transfer from Hierarchical Supramolecular Polymers to Gold Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Coelho, João Paulo; Tardajos, Gloria; Stepanenko, Vladimir; Rödle, Alexander; Fernández, Gustavo; Guerrero-Martínez, Andrés

    2015-11-24

    The transfer of information encoded by molecular subcomponents is a key phenomenon that regulates the biological inheritance in living organisms, yet there is a lack of understanding of related transfer mechanisms at the supramolecular level in artificial multicomponent systems. Our contribution to tackle this challenge has focused on the design of a thiolated π-conjugated linking unit, whose hierarchical, cooperative self-assembly in nonpolar media can be efficiently transferred from the molecular to the nanoscopic level, thereby enabling the reversible self-assembly of gold nanoparticle (AuNP) clusters. The transfer of supramolecular information by the linking π-system can only take place when a specific cooperative nucleation-elongation mechanism is operative, whereas low-ordered noncooperative assemblies formed below a critical concentration do not suffice to extend the order to the AuNP level. To the best of our knowledge, our approach has allowed for the first time a deep analysis of the hierarchy levels and thermodynamics involved in the self-assembly of AuNPs.

  10. Light-induced disassembly of self-assembled vesicle-capped nanotubes observed in real time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coleman, Anthony C.; Beierle, John M.; Stuart, Marc C. A.; Maciá, Beatriz; Caroli, Giuseppe; Mika, Jacek T.; van Dijken, Derk Jan; Chen, Jiawen; Browne, Wesley R.; Feringa, Ben L.

    2011-09-01

    Molecular self-assembly is the basis for the formation of numerous artificial nanostructures. The self-organization of peptides, amphiphilic molecules composed of fused benzene rings and other functional molecules into nanotubes is of particular interest. However, the design of dynamic, complex self-organized systems that are responsive to external stimuli remains a significant challenge. Here, we report self-assembled, vesicle-capped nanotubes that can be selectively disassembled by irradiation. The walls of the nanotubes are 3-nm-thick bilayers and are made from amphiphilic molecules with two hydrophobic legs that interdigitate when the molecules self-assemble into bilayers. In the presence of phospholipids, a phase separation between the phospholipids and the amphiphilic molecules creates nanotubes, which are end-capped by vesicles that can be chemically altered or removed and reattached without affecting the nanotubes. The presence of a photoswitchable and fluorescent core in the amphiphilic molecules allows fast and highly controlled disassembly of the nanotubes on irradiation, and distinct disassembly processes can be observed in real time using fluorescence microscopy.

  11. Organization of inorganic nanomaterials via programmable DNA self-assembly and peptide molecular recognition.

    PubMed

    Carter, Joshua D; LaBean, Thomas H

    2011-03-22

    An interesting alternative to top-down nanofabrication is to imitate biology, where nanoscale materials frequently integrate organic molecules for self-assembly and molecular recognition with ordered, inorganic minerals to achieve mechanical, sensory, or other advantageous functions. Using biological systems as inspiration, researchers have sought to mimic the nanoscale composite materials produced in nature. Here, we describe a combination of self-assembly, molecular recognition, and templating, relying on an oligonucleotide covalently conjugated to a high-affinity gold-binding peptide. After integration of the peptide-coupled DNA into a self-assembling superstructure, the templated peptides recognize and bind gold nanoparticles. In addition to providing new ways of building functional multinanoparticle systems, this work provides experimental proof that a single peptide molecule is sufficient for immobilization of a nanoparticle. This molecular construction strategy, combining DNA assembly and peptide recognition, can be thought of as programmable, granular, artificial biomineralization. We also describe the important observation that the addition of 1-2% Tween 20 surfactant to the solution during gold particle binding allows the gold nanoparticles to remain soluble within the magnesium-containing DNA assembly buffer under conditions that usually lead to the aggregation and precipitation of the nanoparticles.

  12. Converting molecular information of redox coenzymes via self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Morikawa, Masa-aki; Kimizuka, Nobuo

    2012-11-21

    β-Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD(+)) and its reduced form NADH specifically interact with a cyanine dye in aqueous media, giving distinct spectral and nanostructural characteristics to which molecular information of constituent coenzymes are converted via self-assembly.

  13. Differentially photo-crosslinked polymers enable self-assembling microfluidics

    PubMed Central

    Jamal, Mustapha; Zarafshar, Aasiyeh M.; Gracias, David H.

    2012-01-01

    An important feature of naturally self-assembled systems such as leaves and tissues is that they are curved and have embedded fluidic channels that enable the transport of nutrients to, or removal of waste from, specific three-dimensional (3D) regions. Here, we report the self-assembly of photopatterned polymers, and consequently microfluidic devices, into curved geometries. We discovered that differentially photo-crosslinked SU-8 films spontaneously and reversibly curved upon film de-solvation and re-solvation. Photolithographic patterning of the SU-8 films enabled the self-assembly of cylinders, cubes, and bidirectionally folded sheets. We integrated polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microfluidic channels with these SU-8 films to self-assemble curved microfluidic networks. PMID:22068594

  14. Directed flexibility: self-assembly of a supramolecular tetrahedron.

    PubMed

    Ludlow, James M; Xie, Tingzheng; Guo, Zaihong; Guo, Kai; Saunders, Mary Jane; Moorefield, Charles N; Wesdemiotis, Chrys; Newkome, George R

    2015-03-04

    Self-assembly of a tribenzo-27-crown-9 ether functionalized with six terpyridines generated (85%) an expanded tetrahedral structure comprised of four independent triangular surfaces interlinked by crown ether vertices.

  15. Self-Assembly of Structures with Addressable Complexity.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, William M; Frenkel, Daan

    2016-03-02

    The self-assembly of structures with "addressable complexity", where every component is distinct and is programmed to occupy a specific location within a target structure, is a promising route to engineering materials with precisely defined morphologies. Because systems with many components are inherently complicated, one might assume that the chances of successful self-assembly are extraordinarily small. Yet recent advances suggest otherwise: addressable structures with hundreds of distinct building blocks have been designed and assembled with nanometer precision. Despite this remarkable success, it is often challenging to optimize a self-assembly reaction to ensure that the intended structure is kinetically accessible. In this Perspective, we focus on the prediction of kinetic pathways for self-assembly and implications for the design of robust experimental protocols. The development of general principles to predict these pathways will enable the engineering of complex materials using a much wider range of building blocks than is currently possible.

  16. Directed self-assembly of proteins into discrete radial patterns

    PubMed Central

    Thakur, Garima; Prashanthi, Kovur; Thundat, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Unlike physical patterning of materials at nanometer scale, manipulating soft matter such as biomolecules into patterns is still in its infancy. Self-assembled monolayer (SAM) with surface density gradient has the capability to drive biomolecules in specific directions to create hierarchical and discrete structures. Here, we report on a two-step process of self-assembly of the human serum albumin (HSA) protein into discrete ring structures based on density gradient of SAM. The methodology involves first creating a 2-dimensional (2D) polyethylene glycol (PEG) islands with responsive carboxyl functionalities. Incubation of proteins on such pre-patterned surfaces results in direct self-assembly of protein molecules around PEG islands. Immobilization and adsorption of protein on such structures over time evolve into the self-assembled patterns. PMID:23719678

  17. Ionic liquids as amphiphile self-assembly media.

    PubMed

    Greaves, Tamar L; Drummond, Calum J

    2008-08-01

    In recent years, the number of non-aqueous solvents which mediate hydrocarbon-solvent interactions and promote the self-assembly of amphiphiles has been markedly increased by the reporting of over 30 ionic liquids which possess this previously unusual solvent characteristic. This new situation allows a different exploration of the molecular "solvophobic effect" and tests the current understanding of amphiphile self-assembly. Interestingly, both protic and aprotic ionic liquids support amphiphile self-assembly, indicating that it is not required for the solvents to be able to form a hydrogen bonded network. Here, the use of ionic liquids as amphiphile self-assembly media is reviewed, including micelle and liquid crystalline mesophase formation, their use as a solvent phase in microemulsions and emulsions, and the emerging field of nanostructured inorganic materials synthesis. Surfactants, lipids and block co-polymers are the focus amphiphile classes in this critical review (174 references).

  18. Understanding emergent functions in self-assembled fibrous networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinko, Robert; Keten, Sinan

    2015-09-01

    Understanding self-assembly processes of nanoscale building blocks and characterizing their properties are both imperative for designing new hierarchical, network materials for a wide range of structural, optoelectrical, and transport applications. Although the characterization and choices of these material building blocks have been well studied, our understanding of how to precisely program a specific morphology through self-assembly still must be significantly advanced. In the recent study by Xie et al (2015 Nanotechnology 26 205602), the self-assembly of end-functionalized nanofibres is investigated using a coarse-grained molecular model and offers fundamental insight into how to control the structural morphology of nanofibrous networks. Varying nanoscale networks are observed when the molecular interaction strength is changed and the findings suggest that self-assembly through the tuning of molecular interactions is a key strategy for designing nanostructured networks with specific topologies.

  19. Self-assembled peptide nanostructures for functional materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sardan Ekiz, Melis; Cinar, Goksu; Aref Khalily, Mohammad; Guler, Mustafa O.

    2016-10-01

    Nature is an important inspirational source for scientists, and presents complex and elegant examples of adaptive and intelligent systems created by self-assembly. Significant effort has been devoted to understanding these sophisticated systems. The self-assembly process enables us to create supramolecular nanostructures with high order and complexity, and peptide-based self-assembling building blocks can serve as suitable platforms to construct nanostructures showing diverse features and applications. In this review, peptide-based supramolecular assemblies will be discussed in terms of their synthesis, design, characterization and application. Peptide nanostructures are categorized based on their chemical and physical properties and will be examined by rationalizing the influence of peptide design on the resulting morphology and the methods employed to characterize these high order complex systems. Moreover, the application of self-assembled peptide nanomaterials as functional materials in information technologies and environmental sciences will be reviewed by providing examples from recently published high-impact studies.

  20. Activity-assisted self-assembly of colloidal particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mallory, S. A.; Cacciuto, A.

    2016-08-01

    We outline a basic strategy of how self-propulsion can be used to improve the yield of a typical colloidal self-assembly process. The success of this approach is predicated on the thoughtful design of the colloidal building block as well as how self-propulsion is endowed to the particle. As long as a set of criteria are satisfied, it is possible to significantly increase the rate of self-assembly, and greatly expand the window in parameter space where self-assembly can occur. In addition, we show that by tuning the relative on-off time of the self-propelling force it is possible to modulate the effective speed of the colloids allowing for further optimization of the self-assembly process.

  1. Self-assembly drugs: from micelles to nanomedicine.

    PubMed

    Messina, Paula V; Besada-Porto, Jose Miguel; Ruso, Juan M

    2014-03-01

    Self-assembly has fascinated many scientists over the past few decades. Rapid advances and widespread interest in the study of this subject has led to the synthesis of an ever-increasing number of elegant and intricate functional structures with sizes that approach nano- and mesoscopic dimensions. Today, it has grown into a mature field of modern science whose interfaces with many disciplines have provided invaluable opportunities for crossing boundaries for scientists seeking to design novel molecular materials exhibiting unusual properties, and for researchers investigating the structure and function of biomolecules. Consequently, self-assembly transcends the traditional divisional boundaries of science and represents a highly interdisciplinary field including nanotechnology and nanomedicine. Basically, self-assembly focuses on a wide range of discrete molecules or molecular assemblies and uses physical transformations to achieve its goals. In this Review, we present a comprehensive overview of the advances in the field of drug self-assembly and discuss in detail the synthesis, self-assembly behavior, and physical properties as well as applications. We refer the reader to past reviews dealing with colloidal molecules and colloidal self-assembly. In the first part, we will discuss, compare, and link the various bioinformatic procedures: Molecular Dynamics and Quantitative Structure Activity Relationship. The second section deals with the self-assembly behavior in more detail, in which we focus on several experimental techniques, selected according to the depth of knowledge obtained. The last part will review the advances in drug-protein assembly. Nature provides many examples of proteins that form their substrate binding sites by bringing together the component pieces in a process of self-assembly. We will focus in the understanding of physical properties and applications developing thereof.

  2. Self-assembled nanotubes from single fluorescent amino acid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Babar, Dipak Gorakh; Sarkar, Sabyasachi

    2017-03-01

    Self-assembly of biomolecules has gained increasing attention as it generates various supramolecular structural assemblies having potential applications principally in biomedical sciences. Here, we show that amino acid like tryptophan or tyrosine readily aggregates as nanotubes via a simple self-assembly process. These were characterized by FTIR, scanning electron microscopy, and by fluorescence microscopy. Nanotubes prepared from tryptophan are having 200 nm inner diameter and those from tyrosine are having the same around 50 nm diameter.

  3. Self Assembled, Ultra-Hydrophobic Micro/Nano-Textured Surfaces

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-04-01

    Self Assembled, Ultra-Hydrophobic Micro / Nano -Textured Surfaces by Adam M. Rawlett, Joshua A. Orlicki, Nicole Zander, Afia Karikari, and...5069 ARL-TN-275 April 2007 Self Assembled, Ultra-Hydrophobic Micro / Nano -Textured Surfaces Adam M. Rawlett, Joshua A. Orlicki, and...NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 4. TITL Self A bled, Ultra-Hydrophobic Micro / Nano -Textured Surfaces 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER E ssem AND SUBTITLE 5d

  4. Self-assembled Nanomaterials for Hybrid Electronic and Photonic Systems

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-05-15

    Self-assembled Nanomaterials for Hybrid Electronic and Photonic Systems This grant studied DNA nanostructures and their applications in a variety of...MONITORING AGENCY NAME(S) AND ADDRESS (ES) U.S. Army Research Office P.O. Box 12211 Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2211 DNA , nanoscience, self-assembly...Title This grant studied DNA nanostructures and their applications in a variety of ways, including: (1) the development of thermo-mechanical models, (2

  5. Electronic polymers and DNA self-assembled in nanowire transistors.

    PubMed

    Hamedi, Mahiar; Elfwing, Anders; Gabrielsson, Roger; Inganäs, Olle

    2013-02-11

    Aqueous self-assembly of DNA and molecular electronic materials can lead to the creation of innumerable copies of identical devices, and inherently programmed complex nanocircuits. Here self-assembly of a water soluble and highly conducting polymer PEDOT-S with DNA in aqueous conditions is shown. Orientation and assembly of the conducting DNA/PEDOT-S complex into electrochemical DNA nanowire transistors is demonstrated.

  6. Impregnation of tubular self-assemblies into dextran hydrogels.

    PubMed

    Sun, Guoming; Chu, Chih-Chang

    2010-02-16

    Amine groups are the building units of proteins. The incorporation of amine groups into polyethylene glycol diacrylate (PEGDA) hydrogel through dextran-allyl isocyanate-ethylamine (Dex-AE) enhances sustained protein release by introducing effective interactions. To investigate such an interaction effect and to improve protein release, we impregnated self-assembled tubular structures from dextran-bromoethylamine (Dex-BH) and dextran-chloroacetic acid (Dex-CA) into Dex-AE/PEGDA hydrogel. The morphology data obtained from scanning electron microscopy (SEM) reveal that pure PEGDA hydrogel had no effect on the distribution of the self-assembled tubules; the introduction of Dex-AE brought about the dispersion of these tubules, and an increase in Dex-AE content led to more evenly distributed structures. Moreover, the implantation of the self-assembled tubules had no distinct effect on the swelling capacity of the hybrid self-assembly embedded hydrogels. The in vitro albumin release study was carried out in a pH 7.4 buffer solution; the results show that the implantation of the self-assembly into the hydrogels reduced the burst release and prolonged the protein release time. These findings demonstrate that the impregnation of tubular self-assembly into hydrogel makes the hybrid hydrogel an excellent protein delivery system.

  7. Effect of polymerization on hierarchical self-assembly into nanosheets.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Taichi

    2015-01-20

    The oligomers consisting of phenyl-capped bithiophene and tetra(ethylene glycol)s linked by azide-alkyne Huisgen cycloaddition were synthesized. The relationship between the degree of polymerization and self-assembling ability was investigated in o-dichlorobenzene and dimethyl sulfoxide. From the absorption spectrum, it was confirmed that the critical degree of polymerization (CDP) for thiophene unit aggregation was 4. The morphology of the aggregated product was observed by atomic force microscopy. The oligomers 4mer and 5mer could not self-assemble into well-defined structures due to the weak driving force for the self-assembly. In the cases of 6mer and 7mer, aggregates with nonwell-defined and nanosheet structures coexisted. In the cases of 8mer and 9mer, the nanosheet was the main product. The critical point between 7mer and 8mer could be confirmed by different aggregation behaviors in the cooling process of the solution (nonsigmoidal and sigmoidal). In the cases of 8mer and 9mer, polymer folding prior to intermolecular self-assembly, which was supported by sigmoidal aggregation behavior, leads to the nanosheet formation. On the contrary, shorter oligomers than 8mer experience intermolecular aggregation prior to intramolecular polymer folding, which was supported by the nonsigmoidal aggregation behavior. This is the first report to prove the existence of CDP for folded polymer nanosheet formation which requires hierarchical self-assembly, i.e., polymer folding followed by intermolecular self-assembly.

  8. DNA-based self-assembly for functional nanomaterials.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhen-Gang; Ding, Baoquan

    2013-07-26

    The unprecedented development of DNA nanotechnology has caused DNA self-assembly to attract close attention in many disciplines. In this research news article, the employment of DNA self-assembly in the fields of materials science and nanotechnology is described. DNA self-assembly can be used to prepare bulk-scale hydrogels and 3D macroscopic crystals with nanoscale internal structures, to induce the crystallization of nanoparticles, to template the fabrication of organic conductive nanomaterials, and to act as drug delivery vehicles for therapeutic agents. The properties and functions are fully tunable because of the designability and specificity of DNA assembly. Moreover, because of the intrinsic dynamics, DNA self-assembly can act as a program switch and can efficiently control stimuli responsiveness. We highlight the power of DNA self-assembly in the preparation and function regulation of materials, aiming to motivate future multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research. Finally, we describe some of the challenges currently faced by DNA assembly that may affect the functional evolution of such materials, and we provide our insights into the future directions of several DNA self-assembly-based nanomaterials.

  9. Albumin binds self-assembling dyes as specific polymolecular ligands.

    PubMed

    Stopa, Barbara; Rybarska, Janina; Drozd, Anna; Konieczny, Leszek; Król, Marcin; Lisowski, Marek; Piekarska, Barbara; Roterman, Irena; Spólnik, Paweł; Zemanek, Grzegorz

    2006-12-15

    Self-assembling dyes with a structure related to Congo red (e.g. Evans blue) form polymolecular complexes with albumin. The dyes, which are lacking a self-assembling property (Trypan blue, ANS) bind as single molecules. The supramolecular character of dye ligands bound to albumin was demonstrated by indicating the complexation of dye molecules outnumbering the binding sites in albumin and by measuring the hydrodynamic radius of albumin which is growing upon complexation of self-assembling dye in contrast to dyes lacking this property. The self-assembled character of Congo red was also proved using it as a carrier introducing to albumin the intercalated nonbonding foreign compounds. Supramolecular, ordered character of the dye in the complex with albumin was also revealed by finding that self-assembling dyes become chiral upon complexation. Congo red complexation makes albumin less resistant to low pH as concluded from the facilitated N-F transition, observed in studies based on the measurement of hydrodynamic radius. This particular interference with protein stability and the specific changes in digestion resulted from binding of Congo red suggest that the self-assembled dye penetrates the central crevice of albumin.

  10. Electric Field Controlled Self-Assembly of Hierarchically Ordered Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Velichko, Yuri S.; Mantei, Jason R.; Bitton, Ronit; Carvajal, Daniel; Shull, Kenneth R.; Stupp, Samuel I.

    2012-01-01

    Self-assembly in the presence of external forces is an adaptive, directed organization of molecular components under nonequilibrium conditions. While forces may be generated as a result of spontaneous interactions among components of a system, intervention with external forces can significantly alter the final outcome of self-assembly. Superimposing these intrinsic and extrinsic forces provides greater degrees of freedom to control the structure and function of self-assembling materials. In this work we investigate the role of electric fields during the dynamic self-assembly of a negatively charged polyelectrolyte and a positively charged peptide amphiphile in water leading to the formation of an ordered membrane. In the absence of electric fields, contact between the two solutions of oppositely charged molecules triggers the growth of closed membranes with vertically oriented fibrils that encapsulate the polyelectrolyte solution. This process of self-assembly is intrinsically driven by excess osmotic pressure of counterions, and the electric field is found to modify the kinetics of membrane formation, and also its morphology and properties. Depending on the strength and orientation of the field we observe a significant increase or decrease of up to nearly 100% in membrane thickness, as well as the controlled rotation of nanofiber growth direction by 90 degrees, resulting in a significant increase in mechanical stiffness. These results suggest the possibility of using electric fields to control structure in self-assembly processes involving diffusion of oppositely charged molecules. PMID:23166533

  11. Structures Self-Assembled Through Directional Solidification

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dynys, Frederick W.; Sayir, Ali

    2005-01-01

    dry plasma etch. The wet chemical etches the silicon away, exposing the TiSi2 rods, whereas plasma etching preferentially etches the Si-TiSi2 interface to form a crater. The porous architectures are applicable to fabricating microdevices or creating templates for part fabrication. The porous rod structure can serve as a platform for fabricating microplasma devices for propulsion or microheat exchangers and for fabricating microfilters for miniatured chemical reactors. Although more work is required, self-assembly from DSE can have a role in microdevice fabrication.

  12. Photoelectron transport tuning of self-assembled subbands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiong, Zhengwei; Wang, Xinmin; Wu, Weidong; Wang, Xuemin; Peng, Liping; Zhao, Yan; Yan, Dawei; Jiang, Tao; Shen, Changle; Zhan, Zhiqiang; Cao, Linhong; Li, Weihua

    2016-02-01

    Conventionally, electrical transport of quantum subbands occurs at very high electric fields, indicating that the medium is easy to break down. In the experiments and practical applications, the extreme condition is difficult to satisfy. For quantum information transmission, low power consumption and convenient implementation are what we expect. In this paper, we engineered a special quantum dot array (QDA) embedded in a single crystal matrix. By external optical field excitation, we found a series of subbands made of the self-assembled QDA discretely located in the matrix. Changing the spacing between the quantum dots leads to the variation of subband spacing. Artificially manipulating the microcosmic QDA system can bring interesting macroscopic effects, such as an enhanced absorption intensity in the ultraviolet range, a blue-shift of the surface plasmon resonance peak and nonlinear absorption changed from two-photon absorption to saturated absorption. The intrinsic mechanism of the subband optical response was revealed due to the strong quantum confinement effect and dominant intraband transitions. The weak surface plasmon resonance absorption of Ni QDA gave an excellent figure of merit of the order of 10-10. The composite films are expectation enough to become a prime candidate for nonlinear applications near 532 nm. Therefore with interplay of the weak optical field and subbands, we achieved a tunable photoelectron transport process.Conventionally, electrical transport of quantum subbands occurs at very high electric fields, indicating that the medium is easy to break down. In the experiments and practical applications, the extreme condition is difficult to satisfy. For quantum information transmission, low power consumption and convenient implementation are what we expect. In this paper, we engineered a special quantum dot array (QDA) embedded in a single crystal matrix. By external optical field excitation, we found a series of subbands made of the self-assembled

  13. Specific RNA self-assembly with minimal paranemic motifs.

    PubMed

    Afonin, Kirill A; Cieply, Dennis J; Leontis, Neocles B

    2008-01-09

    The paranemic crossover (PX) is a motif for assembling two nucleic acid molecules using Watson-Crick (WC) basepairing without unfolding preformed secondary structure in the individual molecules. Once formed, the paranemic assembly motif comprises adjacent parallel double helices that crossover at every possible point over the length of the motif. The interaction is reversible as it does not require denaturation of basepairs internal to each interacting molecular unit. Paranemic assembly has been demonstrated for DNA but not for RNA and only for motifs with four or more crossover points and lengths of five or more helical half-turns. Here we report the design of RNA molecules that paranemically assemble with the minimum number of two crossovers spanning the major groove to form paranemic motifs with a length of three half turns (3HT). Dissociation constants (Kd's) were measured for a series of molecules in which the number of basepairs between the crossover points was varied from five to eight basepairs. The paranemic 3HT complex with six basepairs (3HT_6M) was found to be the most stable with Kd = 1 x 10-8 M. The half-time for kinetic exchange of the 3HT_6M complex was determined to be approximately 100 min, from which we calculated association and dissociation rate constants ka = 5.11 x 103 M-1s-1 and kd = 5.11 x 10-5 s-1. RNA paranemic assembly of 3HT and 5HT complexes is blocked by single-base substitutions that disrupt individual intermolecular Watson-Crick basepairs and is restored by compensatory substitutions that restore those basepairs. The 3HT motif appears suitable for specific, programmable, and reversible tecto-RNA self-assembly for constructing artificial RNA molecular machines.

  14. Bright Fluorescence and Host-Guest Sensing with a Nanoscale M₄L₆ Tetrahedron Accessed by Self-Assembly of Zinc-Imine Chelate Vertices and Perylene Bisimide Edges.

    PubMed

    Frischmann, Peter D; Kunz, Valentin; Würthner, Frank

    2015-06-15

    A highly luminescent Zn4L6 tetrahedron is reported with 3.8 nm perylene bisimide edges and hexadentate Zn(II)-imine chelate vertices. Replacing Fe(II) and monoamines commonly utilized in subcomponent self-assembly with Zn(II) and tris(2-aminoethyl)amine provides access to a metallosupramolecular host with the rare combination of structural integrity at concentrations <10(-7) mol L(-1) and an exceptionally high fluorescence quantum yield of Φ(em) =0.67. Encapsulation of multiple perylene or coronene guest molecules is accompanied by strong luminescence quenching. We anticipate this self-assembly strategy may be generalized to improve access to brightly fluorescent coordination cages tailored for host-guest light-harvesting, photocatalysis, and sensing.

  15. Optimization of light harvesting and photoprotection: molecular mechanisms and physiological consequences.

    PubMed

    Horton, Peter

    2012-12-19

    The distinctive lateral organization of the protein complexes in the thylakoid membrane investigated by Jan Anderson and co-workers is dependent on the balance of various attractive and repulsive forces. Modulation of these forces allows critical physiological regulation of photosynthesis that provides efficient light-harvesting in limiting light but dissipation of excess potentially damaging radiation in saturating light. The light-harvesting complexes (LHCII) are central to this regulation, which is achieved by phosphorylation of stromal residues, protonation on the lumen surface and de-epoxidation of bound violaxanthin. The functional flexibility of LHCII derives from a remarkable pigment composition and configuration that not only allow efficient absorption of light and efficient energy transfer either to photosystem II or photosystem I core complexes, but through subtle configurational changes can also exhibit highly efficient dissipative reactions involving chlorophyll-xanthophyll and/or chlorophyll-chlorophyll interactions. These changes in function are determined at a macroscopic level by alterations in protein-protein interactions in the thylakoid membrane. The capacity and dynamics of this regulation are tuned to different physiological scenarios by the exact protein and pigment content of the light-harvesting system. Here, the molecular mechanisms involved will be reviewed, and the optimization of the light-harvesting system in different environmental conditions described.

  16. Optimization of Light-Harvesting Pigment Improves Photosynthetic Efficiency1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Honglei; Li, Mengshu; Duan, Sujuan; Fu, Mei; Dong, Xiaoxiao; Feng, Dongru; Wang, Jinfa

    2016-01-01

    Maximizing light capture by light-harvesting pigment optimization represents an attractive but challenging strategy to improve photosynthetic efficiency. Here, we report that loss of a previously uncharacterized gene, HIGH PHOTOSYNTHETIC EFFICIENCY1 (HPE1), optimizes light-harvesting pigments, leading to improved photosynthetic efficiency and biomass production. Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) hpe1 mutants show faster electron transport and increased contents of carbohydrates. HPE1 encodes a chloroplast protein containing an RNA recognition motif that directly associates with and regulates the splicing of target RNAs of plastid genes. HPE1 also interacts with other plastid RNA-splicing factors, including CAF1 and OTP51, which share common targets with HPE1. Deficiency of HPE1 alters the expression of nucleus-encoded chlorophyll-related genes, probably through plastid-to-nucleus signaling, causing decreased total content of chlorophyll (a+b) in a limited range but increased chlorophyll a/b ratio. Interestingly, this adjustment of light-harvesting pigment reduces antenna size, improves light capture, decreases energy loss, mitigates photodamage, and enhances photosynthetic quantum yield during photosynthesis. Our findings suggest a novel strategy to optimize light-harvesting pigments that improves photosynthetic efficiency and biomass production in higher plants. PMID:27609860

  17. Bio serves nano: biological light-harvesting complex as energy donor for semiconductor quantum dots.

    PubMed

    Werwie, Mara; Xu, Xiangxing; Haase, Mathias; Basché, Thomas; Paulsen, Harald

    2012-04-03

    Light-harvesting complex (LHCII) of the photosynthetic apparatus in plants is attached to type-II core-shell CdTe/CdSe/ZnS nanocrystals (quantum dots, QD) exhibiting an absorption band at 710 nm and carrying a dihydrolipoic acid coating for water solubility. LHCII stays functional upon binding to the QD surface and enhances the light utilization of the QDs significantly, similar to its light-harvesting function in photosynthesis. Electronic excitation energy transfer of about 50% efficiency is shown by donor (LHCII) fluorescence quenching as well as sensitized acceptor (QD) emission and corroborated by time-resolved fluorescence measurements. The energy transfer efficiency is commensurable with the expected efficiency calculated according to Förster theory on the basis of the estimated donor-acceptor separation. Light harvesting is particularly efficient in the red spectral domain where QD absorption is relatively low. Excitation over the entire visible spectrum is further improved by complementing the biological pigments in LHCII with a dye attached to the apoprotein; the dye has been chosen to absorb in the "green gap" of the LHCII absorption spectrum and transfers its excitation energy ultimately to QD. This is the first report of a biological light-harvesting complex serving an inorganic semiconductor nanocrystal. Due to the charge separation between the core and the shell in type-II QDs the presented LHCII-QD hybrid complexes are potentially interesting for sensitized charge-transfer and photovoltaic applications.

  18. Studying the Effect of Light Quality on the Size of the Photosystem II Light Harvesting Complex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muhoz, Romualdo; Quiles, Maria J.

    2003-01-01

    In this article the effect of light quality on the size of the photosystem II (PSII) light harvesting complex (LHCII) is studied by measuring the chlorophyll fluorescence emitted by leaf sections of oat ("Avena sativa," var. Prevision) plants previously treated with either white light or with light filtered through blue, green, red or farred…

  19. Atomistic study of energy funneling in the light-harvesting complex of green sulfur bacteria.

    PubMed

    Huh, Joonsuk; Saikin, Semion K; Brookes, Jennifer C; Valleau, Stéphanie; Fujita, Takatoshi; Aspuru-Guzik, Alán

    2014-02-05

    Phototrophic organisms such as plants, photosynthetic bacteria, and algae use microscopic complexes of pigment molecules to absorb sunlight. Within the light-harvesting complexes, which frequently have several functional and structural subunits, the energy is transferred in the form of molecular excitations with very high efficiency. Green sulfur bacteria are considered to be among the most efficient light-harvesting organisms. Despite multiple experimental and theoretical studies of these bacteria, the physical origin of the efficient and robust energy transfer in their light-harvesting complexes is not well understood. To study excitation dynamics at the systems level, we introduce an atomistic model that mimics a complete light-harvesting apparatus of green sulfur bacteria. The model contains approximately 4000 pigment molecules and comprises a double wall roll for the chlorosome, a baseplate, and six Fenna-Matthews-Olson trimer complexes. We show that the fast relaxation within functional subunits combined with the transfer between collective excited states of pigments can result in robust energy funneling to the initial excitation conditions and temperature changes. Moreover, the same mechanism describes the coexistence of multiple time scales of excitation dynamics frequently observed in ultrafast optical experiments. While our findings support the hypothesis of supertransfer, the model reveals energy transport through multiple channels on different length scales.

  20. Self-assemblies of 5'-cholesteryl-ethyl-phosphoryl zidovudine.

    PubMed

    Du, Lina; Jia, Junwei; Ge, Pingju; Jin, Yiguang

    2016-12-01

    Anti-HIV prodrugs are recently focused on due to their ability of self-assembly, macrophage targeting, and enhanced antiviral effects. Here, an amphiphilic prodrug of zidovudine, an anti-HIV nucleoside analogue, 5'-cholesteryl-ethyl-phosphoryl zidovudine (CEPZ) was synthesized. CEPZ showed some unique physicochemical properties. The solubility of CEPZ in the noncompetitive solvents chloroform and tetrahydrofuran (THF) was very high based on the hydrogen bonds between zidovudine groups, though CEPZ was sparing soluble in alcohols and almost insoluble in water. The typical amphiphilic property of CEPZ was demonstrated according to the Langmuir monolayers at the air/water interface. The LogP of CEPZ was high to 13.78, indicating the high hydrophobicity of amphiphilic CEPZ similar to phospholipids. Homogenous and stable self-assemblies were formed with the mean size of 128.7nm and the zeta potential of -35.4mV after injecting the CEPZ-in-THF solution into water. Hydrophobic interaction between the cholesteryl moieties of CEPZ could drive molecular self-assembly and lead to the formation of spherical vesicles. CEPZ self-assemblies showed strong stability even under high temperature and gravity probably due to the high surface charge. CEPZ was very slowly degraded in neutral solutions (e.g., pH 7.4), but fast in acid solutions (e.g., pH 5.0) and some tissue homogenates. CEPZ was quickly eliminated from the circulation and distributed into the mononuclear phagocyte system (MPS) including the liver, spleen and lung after bolus intravenous administration of CEPZ self-assemblies to mice. The MPS targeting effect of CEPZ self-assemblies makes them become a promising self-assembled drug delivery system to eradicate the HIV hidden in the macrophages.

  1. Self-assembled tethered bimolecular lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Sinner, Eva-Kathrin; Ritz, Sandra; Naumann, Renate; Schiller, Stefan; Knoll, Wolfgang

    2009-01-01

    This chapter describes some of the strategies developed in our group for designing, constructing and structurally and functionally characterizing tethered bimolecular lipid membranes (tBLM). We introduce this platform as a novel model membrane system that complements the existing ones, for example, Langmuir monolayers, vesicular liposomal dispersions and bimolecular ("black") lipid membranes. Moreover, it offers the additional advantage of allowing for studies of the influence of membrane structure and order on the function of integral proteins, for example, on how the composition and organization of lipids in a mixed membrane influence the ion translocation activity of integral channel proteins. The first strategy that we introduce concerns the preparation of tethered monolayers by the self-assembly of telechelics. Their molecular architecture with a headgroup, a spacer unit (the "tether") and the amphiphile that mimics the lipid molecule allows them to bind specifically to the solid support thus forming the proximal layer of the final architecture. After fusion of vesicles that could contain reconstituted proteins from a liposomal dispersion in contact to this monolayer the tethered bimolecular lipid membrane is obtained. This can then be characterized by a broad range of surface analytical techniques, including surface plasmon spectroscopies, the quartz crystal microbalance, fluorescence and IR spectroscopies, and electrochemical techniques, to mention a few. It is shown that this concept allows for the construction of tethered lipid bilayers with outstanding electrical properties including resistivities in excess of 10 MOmega cm2. A modified strategy uses the assembly of peptides as spacers that couple covalently via their engineered sulfhydryl or lipoic acid groups at the N-terminus to the employed gold substrate, while their C-terminus is being activated afterward for the coupling of, for example, dimyristoylphosphatidylethanol amine (DMPE) lipid molecules

  2. Allelic variations of a light harvesting chlorophyll A/B protein gene (Lhcb1) associated with agronomic traits in Barley

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-binding protein (LHCP) is one of the most abundant chloroplast proteins in plants. Its main function is to collect and transfer light energy to photosynthetic reaction centers. However, the roles of different LHCPs in light-harvesting antenna systems remain obscure. ...

  3. Acylpyrazolones: Synthesis, self-assembly and lanthanide metal ion separation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Jun

    The central hypothesis that nanoscale self-assemblies can provide excellent metal ion recognition has been substantiated by employing acylpyrazolones and trivalent lanthanide metal ions as model systems. Several novel acylpyrazolones and their amphiphilic analogs have been designed, synthesized, and characterized. Their lanthanide metal ion recognition efficacies have been demonstrated through baseline separations of a mixture of light, middle, and heavy lanthanide metal ions by employing them in the aqueous mobile phase of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with octadecylsilanized silica (ODS) as the stationary phase. The complex separation mechanism is influenced by the structures of acylpyrazolone and amphiphilic moieties, and spontaneous self-assembly of the ligand in the aqueous and on the stationary phases. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) studies of the ligand self-assemblies in the aqueous phase in the absence and presence of lanthanide metal ions reveal spherical, dendritic, and linear (nanofibers, nanorods, and nanotubes) nanoscale structures. Such structures have also been observed when chloromethylated acylpyrazolones are stimulated to self-assemble by a base in nonaqueous solvents and when silica nanoparticles derivatized with them spontaneously self-assemble in aqueous and nonaqueous solvents.

  4. Self-Assembly for the Synthesis of Functional Biomaterials

    PubMed Central

    Stephanopoulos, Nicholas; Ortony, Julia H.; Stupp, Samuel I.

    2012-01-01

    The use of self-assembly for the construction of functional biomaterials is a highly promising and exciting area of research, with great potential for the treatment of injury or disease. By using multiple noncovalent interactions, coded into the molecular design of the constituent components, self-assembly allows for the construction of complex, adaptable, and highly tunable materials with potent biological effects. This review describes some of the seminal advances in the use of self-assembly to make novel systems for regenerative medicine and biology. Materials based on peptides, proteins, DNA, or hybrids thereof have found application in the treatment of a wide range of injuries and diseases, and this review outlines the design principles and practical applications of these systems. Most of the examples covered focus on the synthesis of hydrogels for the scaffolding or transplantation of cells, with an emphasis on the biological, mechanical, and structural properties of the resulting materials. In addition, we will discuss the distinct advantages conferred by self-assembly (compared with traditional covalent materials), and present some of the challenges and opportunities for the next generation of self-assembled biomaterials. PMID:23457423

  5. Sequential programmable self-assembly: Role of cooperative interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halverson, Jonathan D.; Tkachenko, Alexei V.

    2016-03-01

    We propose a general strategy of "sequential programmable self-assembly" that enables a bottom-up design of arbitrary multi-particle architectures on nano- and microscales. We show that a naive realization of this scheme, based on the pairwise additive interactions between particles, has fundamental limitations that lead to a relatively high error rate. This can be overcome by using cooperative interparticle binding. The cooperativity is a well known feature of many biochemical processes, responsible, e.g., for signaling and regulations in living systems. Here we propose to utilize a similar strategy for high precision self-assembly, and show that DNA-mediated interactions provide a convenient platform for its implementation. In particular, we outline a specific design of a DNA-based complex which we call "DNA spider," that acts as a smart interparticle linker and provides a built-in cooperativity of binding. We demonstrate versatility of the sequential self-assembly based on spider-functionalized particles by designing several mesostructures of increasing complexity and simulating their assembly process. This includes a number of finite and repeating structures, in particular, the so-called tetrahelix and its several derivatives. Due to its generality, this approach allows one to design and successfully self-assemble virtually any structure made of a "GEOMAG" magnetic construction toy, out of nanoparticles. According to our results, once the binding cooperativity is strong enough, the sequential self-assembly becomes essentially error-free.

  6. Harnessing Surface Dislocation Networks for Molecular Self-Assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pohl, Karsten

    2009-03-01

    The controlled fabrication of functional wafer-based nano-arrays is one of the ultimate quests in current nanotechnologies. Well-ordered misfit dislocation networks of ultrathin metal films are viable candidates for the growth of two- dimensional ordered cluster arrays in the nanometer regime. Such bottom-up processes can be very complex, involving collective effects from a large number of atoms. Unraveling the fundamental forces that drive these self-assembly processes requires detailed experimental information at the atomic level of large ensembles of hundreds to thousands of atoms. The combination of variable temperature measurements from our home-built STM correlated with 2D Frenkel-Kontorova models based on first-principle interaction parameters is used to explain how uniform arrays can form with the strain in the thin film as the driving force responsible for the surface self-assembly process. This process is generally applicable to assemble many molecular species thus opening avenues towards complex self-assembled structures based on a lock-and-key type approach. Moreover, when increasing the molecular coverage and/or decreasing the strain in the thin film the intermolecular interactions will eventually dominate the elastic effects and dictate the self-assembly process via molecular structure and functionality. We will show that controlling this delicate balance leads to a richness of structures, ranging from disperse ordered arrays of molecular clusters to patterned self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of functionalized fullerenes and methanethiol.

  7. Highly efficient nonradiative energy transfer mediated light harvesting in water using aqueous CdTe quantum dot antennas.

    PubMed

    Mutlugun, Evren; Samarskaya, Olga; Ozel, Tuncay; Cicek, Neslihan; Gaponik, Nikolai; Eychmüller, Alexander; Demir, Hilmi Volkan

    2010-05-10

    We present light harvesting of aqueous colloidal quantum dots to nonradiatively transfer their excitonic excitation energy efficiently to dye molecules in water, without requiring ligand exchange. These as-synthesized CdTe quantum dots that are used as donors to serve as light-harvesting antennas are carefully optimized to match the electronic structure of Rhodamine B molecules used as acceptors for light harvesting in aqueous medium. By varying the acceptor to donor concentration ratio, we measure the light harvesting factor, along with substantial lifetime modifications of these water-soluble quantum dots, from 25.3 ns to 7.2 ns as a result of their energy transfer with efficiency levels up to 86%. Such nonradiative energy transfer mediated light harvesting in aqueous medium holds great promise for future quantum dot multiplexed dye biodetection systems.

  8. Functional architectures based on self-assembly of bio-inspired dipeptides: Structure modulation and its photoelectronic applications.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chengjun; Liu, Kai; Li, Junbai; Yan, Xuehai

    2015-11-01

    Getting inspiration from nature and further developing functional architectures provides an effective way to design innovative materials and systems. Among bio-inspired materials, dipeptides and its self-assembled architectures with functionalities have recently been the subject of intensive studies. However, there is still a great challenge to explore its applications likely due to the lack of effective adaptation of their self-assembled structures as well as a lack of understanding of the self-assembly mechanisms. In this context, taking diphenylalanine (FF, a core recognition motif for molecular self-assembly of the Alzheimer's β-amyloid polypeptides) as a model of bio-inspired dipeptides, recent strategies on modulation of dipeptide-based architectures were introduced with regard to both covalent (architectures modulation by coupling functional groups) and non-covalent ways (controlled architectures by different assembly pathways). Then, applications are highlighted in some newly emerging fields of innovative photoelectronic devices and materials, such as artificial photosynthetic systems for renewable solar energy storage and renewable optical waveguiding materials for optoelectronic devices. At last, the challenges and future perspectives of these bio-inspired dipeptides are also addressed.

  9. Actinide Sequestration Using Self-Assembled Monolayers on Mesoporous Supports

    SciTech Connect

    Fryxell, Glen E.; Lin, Yuehe; Fiskum, Sandra K.; Birnbaum, Jerome C.; Wu, Hong; Kemner, K. M.; Kelly, Shelley

    2005-03-01

    Surfactant templated synthesis of mesoporous ceramics provides a versatile foundation upon which to create high efficiency environmental sorbents. These nanoporous ceramic oxides condense a huge amount of surface area into a very small volume. The ceramic oxide interface is receptive to surface functionalization through molecular self-assembly. The marriage of mesoporous ceramics with self-assembled monolayer chemistry creates a powerful new class of environmental sorbent materials called self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous supports (SAMMS). These SAMMS materials are highly efficient sorbents, whose interfacial chemistry can be fine-tuned to selectively sequester a specific target species, such as heavy metals, tetrahedral oxometallate anions and radionuclides. Details addressing the design, synthesis and characterization of SAMMS materials specifically designed to sequester actinides, of central importance to the environmental clean-up necessary after 40 years of weapons grade plutonium production, as well as evaluation of their binding affinities and kinetics are presented.

  10. Self-assembly of polymeric microspheres of complex internal structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fialkowski, Marcin; Bitner, Agnieszka; Grzybowski, Bartosz A.

    2005-01-01

    Self-assembly can easily produce intricate structures that would be difficult to make by conventional fabrication means. Here, self-assembly is used to prepare multicomponent polymeric microspheres of arbitrary internal symmetries. Droplets of liquid prepolymers are printed onto a water-soluble hydrogel, and are allowed to spread and coalesce into composite patches. These patches are then immersed in an isodense liquid, which both compensates the force of gravity and dissolves the gel beneath the polymers. Subsequently, the patches fold into spheres whose internal structures are dictated by the arrangement of the droplets printed onto the surface. The spheres can be solidified either thermally or by ultraviolet radiation. We present a theoretical analysis of droplet spreading, coalescence and folding. Conditions for the stability of the folded microspheres are derived from linear stability analysis. The composite microbeads that we describe are likely to find uses in optics, colloidal self-assembly and controlled-delivery applications.

  11. Functional self-assembled lipidic systems derived from renewable resources

    PubMed Central

    Silverman, Julian R.; Samateh, Malick; John, George

    2015-01-01

    Self-assembled lipidic amphiphile systems can create a variety of multi-functional soft materials with value-added properties. When employing natural reagents and following biocatalytic syntheses, self-assembling monomers may be inherently designed for degradation, making them potential alternatives to conventional and persistent polymers. By using non-covalent forces, self-assembled amphiphiles can form nanotubes, fibers, and other stimuli responsive architectures prime for further applied research and incorporation into commercial products. By viewing these lipid derivatives under a lens of green principles, there is the hope that in developing a structure–function relationship and functional smart materials that research may remain safe, economic, and efficient. PMID:26766923

  12. Guided and magnetic self-assembly of tunable magnetoceptive gels

    PubMed Central

    Tasoglu, S.; Yu, C.H.; Gungordu, H.I.; Guven, S.; Vural, T.; Demirci, U.

    2014-01-01

    Self-assembly of components into complex functional patterns at microscale is common in nature, and used increasingly in numerous disciplines such as optoelectronics, microfabrication, sensors, tissue engineering and computation. Here, we describe the use of stable radicals to guide the self-assembly of magnetically tunable gels, which we call ‘magnetoceptive’ materials at the scale of hundreds of microns to a millimeter, each can be programmed by shape and composition, into heterogeneous complex structures. Using paramagnetism of free radicals as a driving mechanism, complex heterogeneous structures are built in the magnetic field generated by permanent magnets. The overall magnetic signature of final structure is erased via an antioxidant vitamin E, subsequent to guided self-assembly. We demonstrate unique capabilities of radicals and antioxidants in fabrication of soft systems with heterogeneity in material properties, such as porosity, elastic modulus and mass density; then in bottom-up tissue engineering and finally, levitational and selective assembly of microcomponents. PMID:25175148

  13. Equation of State for Phospholipid Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Marsh, Derek

    2016-01-01

    Phospholipid self-assembly is the basis of biomembrane stability. The entropy of transfer from water to self-assembled micelles of lysophosphatidylcholines and diacyl phosphatidylcholines with different chain lengths converges to a common value at a temperature of 44°C. The corresponding enthalpies of transfer converge at ∼−18°C. An equation of state for the free energy of self-assembly formulated from this thermodynamic data depends on the heat capacity of transfer as the sole parameter needed to specify a particular lipid. For lipids lacking calorimetric data, measurement of the critical micelle concentration at a single temperature suffices to define an effective heat capacity according to the model. Agreement with the experimental temperature dependence of the critical micelle concentration is then good. The predictive powers should extend also to amphiphile partitioning and the kinetics of lipid-monomer transfer. PMID:26745421

  14. Self-Assemblies of Acicular Hollow Fe/C Nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Li, Wangchang; Qiao, Xiaojing; Li, Mingyu; Zheng, Qiuyu; Ren, Qingguo; Zhu, Y Q; Peng, H X

    2015-08-01

    Self-assemblies of acicular hollow Fe/C structures were synthesized using D-glucose monohydrate and ferric chloride as precursors by a simple hydrothermal process followed by carbonization at 800 °C. The self-assembled structures with an overall diameter of 15~20 µm composed of radially formed hollow needles from a central core with an average diameter of ca. 1 µm and a length up to 10 µm. The end of the needles was revealed to be a awl shape with a hollow structure formed during the self-assembly process and the subsequent heat treatment. The hollow structure was probably caused by the Kirkendall effect at 800 °C. The materials exhibit ferromagnetic characteristic with saturation magnetization (Ms), remanent magnetization (Mr), and coercivity (Hc) of 22.2 emu/g, 3 emu/g, and 151.22 Oe, respectively, with Ms much lower than that of Fe3O4.

  15. Dynamic self-assembly of coordination polymers in aqueous solution.

    PubMed

    Li, Wen; Kim, Yongju; Li, Jingfang; Lee, Myongsoo

    2014-08-07

    The construction of supramolecular polymers has been intensively pursued because the nanostructures formed through weak non-covalent interactions can be triggered by external stimuli leading to smart materials and sensors. Self-assemblies of coordination polymers consisting of metal ions and organic ligands in aqueous solution also provide particular contributions in this area. The main motivation for developing those coordination polymers originates from the value-added combination between metal ions and ligands. This review highlights the recent progress of the dynamic self-assembly of coordination polymers that result from the sophisticated molecular design, towards fabricating stimuli-responsive systems and bio-related materials. Dynamic structural changes and switchable physical properties triggered by various stimuli are summarized. Finally, the outlook for aqueous nanostructures originated from the dynamic self-assembly of coordination polymers is also presented.

  16. Equation of State for Phospholipid Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Marsh, Derek

    2016-01-05

    Phospholipid self-assembly is the basis of biomembrane stability. The entropy of transfer from water to self-assembled micelles of lysophosphatidylcholines and diacyl phosphatidylcholines with different chain lengths converges to a common value at a temperature of 44°C. The corresponding enthalpies of transfer converge at ∼-18°C. An equation of state for the free energy of self-assembly formulated from this thermodynamic data depends on the heat capacity of transfer as the sole parameter needed to specify a particular lipid. For lipids lacking calorimetric data, measurement of the critical micelle concentration at a single temperature suffices to define an effective heat capacity according to the model. Agreement with the experimental temperature dependence of the critical micelle concentration is then good. The predictive powers should extend also to amphiphile partitioning and the kinetics of lipid-monomer transfer.

  17. Self-Assembly in Biosilicification and Biotemplated Silica Materials

    PubMed Central

    Fernandes, Francisco M.; Coradin, Thibaud; Aimé, Carole

    2014-01-01

    During evolution, living organisms have learned to design biomolecules exhibiting self-assembly properties to build-up materials with complex organizations. This is particularly evidenced by the delicate siliceous structures of diatoms and sponges. These structures have been considered as inspiration sources for the preparation of nanoscale and nanostructured silica-based materials templated by the self-assembled natural or biomimetic molecules. These templates range from short peptides to large viruses, leading to biohybrid objects with a wide variety of dimensions, shapes and organization. A more recent strategy based on the integration of biological self-assembly as the driving force of silica nanoparticles organization offers new perspectives to elaborate highly-tunable, biofunctional nanocomposites. PMID:28344249

  18. Hydrodynamic Self-Assembly of Topographical Patterns on Soft Materials

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Satish

    2016-01-06

    The objective of this project is to use theoretical tools to explore fundamentally new ways of creating and controlling surface topography on soft materials (e.g., polymeric liquids, gels, colloidal suspensions) that make use of principles from hydrodynamics and self-assembly. Surface topography is known to have a significant impact on the optical, adhesive, and wetting properties of materials, so improved fundamental understanding of how to create and control it will help enable the tailoring of these properties to desired specifications. Self-assembly is the spontaneous organization of an ordered structure, and hydrodynamics often plays an important role in the self-assembly of soft materials. This research supported through this project has led to the discovery of a number of novel phenomena that are described in published journal articles. In this way, the research significantly adds to the fundamental understanding of the topics investigated.

  19. Investigating collagen self-assembly with optical tweezers microrheology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forde, Nancy; Shayegan, Marjan; Altindal, Tuba

    Collagen is the fundamental structural protein in vertebrates. Assembled from individual triple-helical proteins to make strong fibres, collagen is a beautiful example of a hierarchical self-assembling system. Using optical tweezers to perform microrheology measurements, we explore the dynamics of interactions between collagens responsible for their self-assembly and examine the development of heterogeneous mechanics during assembly into fibrillar gels. Telopeptides, short non-helical regions that flank the triple helix, have long been known to facilitate fibril self-assembly. We find that their removal not only slows down fibril nucleation but also results in a significant frequency-dependent reduction in the elastic modulus of collagens in solution. We interpret these results in terms of a model in which telopeptides facilitate transient intermolecular interactions, which enhance network connectivity in solution and lead to more rapid assembly in fibril-forming conditions. Current address: Department of Physics, McGill University.

  20. Actinide sequestration using self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous supports.

    PubMed

    Fryxell, Glen E; Lin, Yuehe; Fiskum, Sandy; Birnbaum, Jerome C; Wu, Hong; Kemner, Ken; Kelly, Shelley

    2005-03-01

    Surfactant templated synthesis of mesoporous ceramics provides a versatile foundation upon which to create high efficiency environmental sorbents. These nanoporous ceramic oxides condense a huge amount of surface area into a very small volume. The ceramic oxide interface is receptive to surface functionalization through molecular self-assembly. The marriage of mesoporous ceramics with self-assembled monolayer chemistry creates a powerful new class of environmental sorbent materials called self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous supports (SAMMS). These SAMMS materials are highly efficient sorbents whose interfacial chemistry can be fine-tuned to selectively sequester a specific target species, such as heavy metals, tetrahedral oxometalate anions, and radionuclides. Details addressing the design, synthesis, and characterization of SAMMS materials specifically designed to sequester actinides, of central importance to the environmental cleanup necessary after 40 years of weapons-grade plutonium production, as well as evaluation of their binding affinities and kinetics are presented.

  1. Reactivity within a confined self-assembled nanospace.

    PubMed

    Koblenz, Tehila S; Wassenaar, Jeroen; Reek, Joost N H

    2008-02-01

    Confined nanospaces in which reactions can take place, have been created by various approaches such as molecular capsules, zeolites and micelles. In this tutorial review we focus on the application of self-assembled nanocapsules with well-defined cavities as nanoreactors for organic and metal catalysed transformations. The self-assembly of nanocapsules based on noncovalent bonds such as hydrogen bonds and metal-ligand interactions is discussed to introduce the properties of the building blocks and capsules thereof. We will elaborate on the encapsulation effects that can be expected when reactions are carried out in a capsule-protected environment. Subsequently, literature examples will be described in which self-assembled nanocapsules are applied as nanoreactors, for various types of organic and metal catalysed reactions.

  2. Guided and magnetic self-assembly of tunable magnetoceptive gels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tasoglu, S.; Yu, C. H.; Gungordu, H. I.; Guven, S.; Vural, T.; Demirci, U.

    2014-09-01

    Self-assembly of components into complex functional patterns at microscale is common in nature, and used increasingly in numerous disciplines such as optoelectronics, microfabrication, sensors, tissue engineering and computation. Here, we describe the use of stable radicals to guide the self-assembly of magnetically tunable gels, which we call ‘magnetoceptive’ materials at the scale of hundreds of microns to a millimeter, each can be programmed by shape and composition, into heterogeneous complex structures. Using paramagnetism of free radicals as a driving mechanism, complex heterogeneous structures are built in the magnetic field generated by permanent magnets. The overall magnetic signature of final structure is erased via an antioxidant vitamin E, subsequent to guided self-assembly. We demonstrate unique capabilities of radicals and antioxidants in fabrication of soft systems with heterogeneity in material properties, such as porosity, elastic modulus and mass density; then in bottom-up tissue engineering and finally, levitational and selective assembly of microcomponents.

  3. Self-Assembly of DNA-coated colloids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pine, David

    DNA-coated particles have emerged as a powerful tool for programming the self-assembly of colloids and nanoparticles. The power of this approach lies in the highly specific molecular recognition properties of DNA and in the thermal reversibility of the interactions between DNA strands attached to different particles. These two properties taken together can, in principle, direct the bottom-up self-assembly of different materials into almost any desired structure. Here we discuss the self-assembly of single and multi-component crystals of DNA-coated colloids. This work is supported by the Army Research Office under MURI Grant Award Number W911NF-10-1-0518 and the MRSEC Program of the NSF under Award Number DMR-1420073.

  4. Guided and magnetic self-assembly of tunable magnetoceptive gels.

    PubMed

    Tasoglu, S; Yu, C H; Gungordu, H I; Guven, S; Vural, T; Demirci, U

    2014-09-01

    Self-assembly of components into complex functional patterns at microscale is common in nature, and used increasingly in numerous disciplines such as optoelectronics, microfabrication, sensors, tissue engineering and computation. Here, we describe the use of stable radicals to guide the self-assembly of magnetically tunable gels, which we call 'magnetoceptive' materials at the scale of hundreds of microns to a millimeter, each can be programmed by shape and composition, into heterogeneous complex structures. Using paramagnetism of free radicals as a driving mechanism, complex heterogeneous structures are built in the magnetic field generated by permanent magnets. The overall magnetic signature of final structure is erased via an antioxidant vitamin E, subsequent to guided self-assembly. We demonstrate unique capabilities of radicals and antioxidants in fabrication of soft systems with heterogeneity in material properties, such as porosity, elastic modulus and mass density; then in bottom-up tissue engineering and finally, levitational and selective assembly of microcomponents.

  5. Self-assembled liposomal nanoparticles in photodynamic therapy

    PubMed Central

    Sadasivam, Magesh; Avci, Pinar; Gupta, Gaurav K.; Lakshmanan, Shanmugamurthy; Chandran, Rakkiyappan; Huang, Ying-Ying; Kumar, Raj; Hamblin, Michael R.

    2013-01-01

    Photodynamic therapy (PDT) employs the combination of non-toxic photosensitizers (PS) together with harmless visible light of the appropriate wavelength to produce reactive oxygen species that kill unwanted cells. Because many PS are hydrophobic molecules prone to aggregation, numerous drug delivery vehicles have been tested to solubilize these molecules, render them biocompatible and enhance the ease of administration after intravenous injection. The recent rise in nanotechnology has markedly expanded the range of these nanoparticulate delivery vehicles beyond the well-established liposomes and micelles. Self-assembled nanoparticles are formed by judicious choice of monomer building blocks that spontaneously form a well-oriented 3-dimensional structure that incorporates the PS when subjected to the appropriate conditions. This self-assembly process is governed by a subtle interplay of forces on the molecular level. This review will cover the state of the art in the preparation and use of self-assembled liposomal nanoparticles within the context of PDT. PMID:24348377

  6. Self-assembly of tunable protein suprastructures from recombinant oleosin

    PubMed Central

    Vargo, Kevin B.; Parthasarathy, Ranganath; Hammer, Daniel A.

    2012-01-01

    Using recombinant amphiphilic proteins to self-assemble suprastructures would allow precise control over surfactant chemistry and the facile incorporation of biological functionality. We used cryo-TEM to confirm self-assembled structures from recombinantly produced mutants of the naturally occurring sunflower protein, oleosin. We studied the phase behavior of protein self-assembly as a function of solution ionic strength and protein hydrophilic fraction, observing nanometric fibers, sheets, and vesicles. Vesicle membrane thickness correlated with increasing hydrophilic fraction for a fixed hydrophobic domain length. The existence of a bilayer membrane was corroborated in giant vesicles through the localized encapsulation of hydrophobic Nile red and hydrophilic calcein. Circular dichroism revealed that changes in nanostructural morphology in this family of mutants was unrelated to changes in secondary structure. Ultimately, we envision the use of recombinant techniques to introduce novel functionality into these materials for biological applications. PMID:22753512

  7. Self-assembly of size-controlled liposomes on DNA nanotemplates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yang; Wang, Jing; Shigematsu, Hideki; Xu, Weiming; Shih, William M.; Rothman, James E.; Lin, Chenxiang

    2016-05-01

    Artificial lipid-bilayer membranes are valuable tools for the study of membrane structure and dynamics. For applications such as the study of vesicular transport and drug delivery, there is a pressing need for artificial vesicles with controlled size. However, controlling vesicle size and shape with nanometre precision is challenging, and approaches to achieve this can be heavily affected by lipid composition. Here, we present a bio-inspired templating method to generate highly monodispersed sub-100-nm unilamellar vesicles, where liposome self-assembly was nucleated and confined inside rigid DNA nanotemplates. Using this method, we produce homogeneous liposomes with four distinct predefined sizes. We also show that the method can be used with a variety of lipid compositions and probe the mechanism of templated liposome formation by capturing key intermediates during membrane self-assembly. The DNA nanotemplating strategy represents a conceptually novel way to guide lipid bilayer formation and could be generalized to engineer complex membrane/protein structures with nanoscale precision.

  8. Self-assembly of size-controlled liposomes on DNA nanotemplates

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Yang; Wang, Jing; Shigematsu, Hideki; Xu, Weiming; Shih, William M; Rothman, James E; Lin, Chenxiang

    2016-01-01

    Artificial lipid-bilayer membranes are valuable tools for the study of membrane structure and dynamics. For applications such as studying vesicular transport and drug delivery, there is a pressing need for artificial vesicles with controlled size. However, controlling vesicle size and shape with nanometer precision is challenging and approaches to achieve this can be heavily affected by lipid composition. Here we present a bio-inspired templating method to generate highly monodispersed sub-100nm unilamellar vesicles, where liposome self-assembly was nucleated and confined inside rigid DNA nanotemplates. Using this method we produced homogenous liposomes with four distinct pre-defined sizes. We also show that the method can be used with a variety of lipid compositions and probed the mechanism of the templated liposome formation by capturing key intermediates during membrane self-assembly. The DNA nanotemplating strategy represents a conceptually novel way to guide the lipid bilayer formation, and could be generalized to engineer complex membrane/protein structures with nanoscale precision. PMID:27102682

  9. Self-Assembled DNA Templated Nano-wires and Circuits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braun, Erez

    2000-03-01

    The realization that conventional microelectronics is approaching its miniaturization limits has motivated the search for an alternative route based on self-assembled nanometer-scale electronics. We have recently proposed a new approach based on the hybridization of biological and electronic materials (Braun E., Eichen Y., Sivan U. and Ben-Yoseph G., Nature 391, 775 (1998)). The concept relies on a two-step self-assembly process. The inherent molecular recognition capabilities of DNA molecules are first utilized to construct a network that serves as a template for the subsequent assembly of electronic materials into a circuit. The utilization of DNA and its associated enzymatic machinery enables: (a) self-assembly of complex substrates, (b) specific molecular addresses for the localization of electronic materials (e.g., gold colloids) by standard molecular biology techniques, (c) interdevice wiring and (d) bridging the microscopic structures to the macroscopic world. The self-assembly of nanometer scale electronics relies on two complementary developments. First, the ability to convert DNA molecules into thin conductive wires and second, the self-assembly of complex extended DNA templates. Our progress in these two directions will be presented. Regarding the first issue, a physical process resulting in condensation of gold colloids onto DNA molecules enables the assembly of thin gold wires (around 100-200 A wide) having, in principle, unlimited extensions. The second issue is developed in the context of recombinant DNA which allows the self-assembly of precise molecular junctions and networks. Specifically, we use RecA protein, which is the main protein responsible for genetic recombination in E. Coli bacteria, to construct DNA junctions at pre-designed addresses (sequences) on the molecules. The integration of these processes allows advancing nanometer-scale electronics. A realistic fabrication scheme for a room-temperature single-electron transistor

  10. Interfacial and mechanical properties of self-assembling systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carvajal, Daniel

    Self-assembly is a fascinating phenomena where interactions between small subunits allow them to aggregate and form complex structures that can span many length scales. These self-assembled structures are especially important in biology where they are necessary for life as we know it. This dissertation is a study of three very different self-assembling systems, all of which have important connections to biology and biological systems. Drop shape analysis was used to study the interfacial assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers at the oil/water interface. When biologically functionalyzed copolymers are used, this system can serve as a model for receptor-ligand interactions that are used by cells to perform many activities, such as interact with their surroundings. The physical properties of a self-assembling membrane system were quantified using membrane inflation and swelling experiments. These types of membranes may have important applications in medicine such as drug eluting (growth factor eluting) scaffolds to aid in wound healing. The factors affecting the properties of bis(leucine) oxalamide gels were also explored. We believe that this particular system will serve as an appropriate model for biological gels that are made up of fiber-like and/or rod-like structures. During the course of the research presented in this dissertation, many new techniques were developed specifically to allow/aid the study of these distinct self-assembling systems. For example, numerical methods were used to predict drop stability for drop shape analysis experiments and the methods used to create reproducibly create self-assembling membranes were developed specifically for this purpose. The development of these new techniques is an integral part of the thesis and should aid future students who work on these projects. A number ongoing projects and interesting research directions for each one of the projects is also presented.

  11. Probing peptide amphiphile self-assembly in blood serum.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Arijit; Buettner, Christian J; Manos, Aaron A; Wallace, Ashley J; Tweedle, Michael F; Goldberger, Joshua E

    2014-12-08

    There has been recent interest in designing smart diagnostic or therapeutic self-assembling peptide or polymeric materials that can selectively undergo morphological transitions to accumulate at a disease site in response to specific stimuli. Developing approaches to probe these self-assembly transitions in environments that accurately amalgamate the diverse plethora of proteins, biomolecules, and salts of blood is essential for creating systems that function in vivo. Here, we have developed a fluorescence anisotropy approach to probe the pH-dependent self-assembly transition of peptide amphiphile (PA) molecules that transform from spherical micelles at pH 7.4 to nanofibers under more acidic pH's in blood serum. By mixing small concentrations of a Ru(bipy)3(2+)-tagged PA with a Gd(DO3A)-tagged PA having the same lipid-peptide sequence, we showed that the pH dependence of self-assembly is minimally affected and can be monitored in mouse blood serum. These PA vehicles can be designed to transition from spherical micelles to nanofibers in the pH range 7.0-7.4 in pure serum. In contrast to the typical notion of serum albumin absorbing isolated surfactant molecules and disrupting self-assembly, our experiments showed that albumin does not bind these anionic PAs and instead promotes nanofibers due to a molecular crowding effect. Finally, we created a medium that replicates the transition pH in serum to within 0.08 pH units and allows probing self-assembly behavior using conventional spectroscopic techniques without conflicting protein signals, thus simplifying the development pathway from test tube to in vivo experimentation for stimuli-responsive materials.

  12. DNA biosensors based on self-assembled carbon nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Wang, S G; Wang, Ruili; Sellin, P J; Zhang, Qing

    2004-12-24

    DNA biosensors based on self-assembled multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) were described in this paper, in which the probe DNA oligonucleotides were immobilized by forming covalent amide bonds between carboxyl groups at the nanotubes and amino groups at the ends of the DNA oligonucleotides. Hybridization between the probe and target DNA oligonucleotides was confirmed by the changes in the voltammetric peak of the indicator of methylene blue. Our results demonstrate that the DNA biosensors based on self-assembled MWNTs had a higher hybridization efficiency compared to those based on random MWNTs. In addition, the developed DNA biosensors also had a high selectivity of hybridization detection.

  13. Backfilled, self-assembled monolayers and methods of making same

    DOEpatents

    Fryxell, Glen E.; Zemanian, Thomas S.; Addleman, R. Shane; Aardahl, Christopher L.; Zheng, Feng; Busche, Brad; Egorov, Oleg B.

    2009-06-30

    Backfilled, self-assembled monolayers and methods of making the same are disclosed. The self-assembled monolayer comprises at least one functional organosilane species and a substantially random dispersion of at least one backfilling organosilane species among the functional organosilane species, wherein the functional and backfilling organosilane species have been sequentially deposited on a substrate. The method comprises depositing sequentially a first organosilane species followed by a backfilling organosilane species, and employing a relaxation agent before or during deposition of the backfilling organosilane species, wherein the first and backfilling organosilane species are substantially randomly dispersed on a substrate.

  14. Structural simulations of nanomaterials self-assembled from ionic macrocycles.

    SciTech Connect

    van Swol, Frank B.; Medforth, Craig John

    2010-10-01

    Recent research at Sandia has discovered a new class of organic binary ionic solids with tunable optical, electronic, and photochemical properties. These nanomaterials, consisting of a novel class of organic binary ionic solids, are currently being developed at Sandia for applications in batteries, supercapacitors, and solar energy technologies. They are composed of self-assembled oligomeric arrays of very large anions and large cations, but their crucial internal arrangement is thus far unknown. This report describes (a) the development of a relevant model of nonconvex particles decorated with ions interacting through short-ranged Yukawa potentials, and (b) the results of initial Monte Carlo simulations of the self-assembly binary ionic solids.

  15. Scanning tunneling microscopy of self-assembled viral nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anacleto, Benjamin; Steinsultz, Nat; Sharma, Prashant

    2010-03-01

    We use scanning tunneling microscopy to investigate self-assembled monolayers of M13 bacteriophages on graphite surface. The bacteriophages we use have gold binding peptide motifs on their outer protein coat (˜1μm long, ˜10 nm diameter) allowing us to self-assemble gold nanoparticles on graphite. Using scanning tunneling microscopy we are able to resolve sub-molecular structure of the protein coat of M13 bacteriophage. Scanning tunneling spectroscopy allows us to study the binding of gold nanoparticles to the peptide motif on the bacteriophage.

  16. Nano-engineering by optically directed self-assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Furst, Eric; Dunn, Elissa; Park, Jin-Gyu; Brinker, C. Jeffrey; Sainis, Sunil; Merrill, Jason; Dufresne, Eric; Reichert, Matthew D.; Brotherton, Christopher M.; Bogart, Katherine Huderle Andersen; Molecke, Ryan A.; Koehler, Timothy P.; Bell, Nelson Simmons; Grillet, Anne Mary; Gorby, Allen D.; Singh, John; Lele, Pushkar; Mittal, Manish

    2009-09-01

    Lack of robust manufacturing capabilities have limited our ability to make tailored materials with useful optical and thermal properties. For example, traditional methods such as spontaneous self-assembly of spheres cannot generate the complex structures required to produce a full bandgap photonic crystals. The goal of this work was to develop and demonstrate novel methods of directed self-assembly of nanomaterials using optical and electric fields. To achieve this aim, our work employed laser tweezers, a technology that enables non-invasive optical manipulation of particles, from glass microspheres to gold nanoparticles. Laser tweezers were used to create ordered materials with either complex crystal structures or using aspherical building blocks.

  17. Self-assembly of colloidal pyramids in magnetic fields.

    PubMed

    Helseth, L E

    2005-08-02

    We study routes toward the construction of 2D colloidal pyramids. We find that magnetic beads may self-assemble into pyramids near a nonmagnetic 1D boundary as long as the number of beads in the pyramid does not exceed 10. We have also found that a strong magnetic field gradient could act as a boundary, thus assisting the self-assembly of magnetic colloids in water, and have observed the formation of stable microscopic pyramids within a certain magnetic field range. Our results indicate that colloidal pyramids can be formed in a number of ways by utilizing external fields.

  18. Molecular dynamics simulations and electronic excited state properties of a self-assembled peptide amphiphile nanofiber with metalloporphyrin arrays.

    PubMed

    Yu, Tao; Lee, One-Sun; Schatz, George C

    2014-09-18

    We have employed molecular dynamics simulations and quantum chemistry methods to study the structures and electronic absorption properties of a novel type of photonic nanowire gel constructed by the self-assembly of peptide amphiphiles (PAs) and the chromophore-(PPIX)Zn molecules. Using molecular dynamics simulations, structures of the self-assembled fiber were determined with atomistic detail, including the distribution of chromophores along the nanofiber and the relative distances and orientations of pairs of chromophores. In addition, quantum chemistry calculations were used to determine the electronic structure and absorption properties of the chromophores in the fiber, so as to assess the capabilities of the nanofiber for photonics applications. The calculations show that the PA nanofiber provides an effective scaffold for the chromophores in which the chromophores form several clusters in which nearest neighbor chromophores are separated by less than 20 Å. The calculations also indicate that the chromophores can be in both the hydrophilic shell and hydrophobic core portions of the fiber. There are only small spectral shifts to the B-band of the porphyrins arising from the inhomogeneous microelectronic environment provided by the fiber. However, there are much stronger electronic interactions between nearby pairs of chromophores, leading to a more significant red shift of the B-band that is similar to what is found in the experiments and to significant excitonic coupling that is seen in circular dichroism spectra. This electronic interaction between chromophores associated with the PA nanofiber structure is crucial to future applications of these fibers for light-harvesting applications.

  19. Hyperdiversity of Genes Encoding Integral Light-Harvesting Proteins in the Dinoflagellate Symbiodinium sp

    PubMed Central

    Boldt, Lynda; Yellowlees, David; Leggat, William

    2012-01-01

    The superfamily of light-harvesting complex (LHC) proteins is comprised of proteins with diverse functions in light-harvesting and photoprotection. LHC proteins bind chlorophyll (Chl) and carotenoids and include a family of LHCs that bind Chl a and c. Dinophytes (dinoflagellates) are predominantly Chl c binding algal taxa, bind peridinin or fucoxanthin as the primary carotenoid, and can possess a number of LHC subfamilies. Here we report 11 LHC sequences for the chlorophyll a-chlorophyll c2-peridinin protein complex (acpPC) subfamily isolated from Symbiodinium sp. C3, an ecologically important peridinin binding dinoflagellate taxa. Phylogenetic analysis of these proteins suggests the acpPC subfamily forms at least three clades within the Chl a/c binding LHC family; Clade 1 clusters with rhodophyte, cryptophyte and peridinin binding dinoflagellate sequences, Clade 2 with peridinin binding dinoflagellate sequences only and Clades 3 with heterokontophytes, fucoxanthin and peridinin binding dinoflagellate sequences. PMID:23112815

  20. ARCHITECTURE OF A CHARGE-TRANSFER STATE REGULATING LIGHT HARVESTING IN A PLANT ANTENNA PROTEIN

    SciTech Connect

    Fleming, Graham; Ahn, Tae Kyu; Avenson, Thomas J.; Ballottari, Matteo; Cheng, Yuan-Chung; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R.

    2008-04-02

    Energy-dependent quenching of excess absorbed light energy (qE) is a vital mechanism for regulating photosynthetic light harvesting in higher plants. All of the physiological characteristics of qE have been positively correlated with charge-transfer between coupled chlorophyll and zeaxanthin molecules in the light-harvesting antenna of photosystem II (PSII). In this work, we present evidence for charge-transfer quenching in all three of the individual minor antenna complexes of PSII (CP29, CP26, and CP24), and we conclude that charge-transfer quenching in CP29 involves a de-localized state of an excitonically coupled chlorophyll dimer. We propose that reversible conformational changes in CP29 can `tune? the electronic coupling between the chlorophylls in this dimer, thereby modulating the energy of the chlorophylls-zeaxanthin charge-transfer state and switching on and off the charge-transfer quenching during qE.

  1. Theoretical Studies on Excitation Energy Fluctuations of Pigments in a Light-Harvesting Complex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Higashi, Masahiro; Saito, Shinji

    2014-03-01

    Excitation energy fluctuations of pigments in light-harvesting complexes play an important role in the excitation energy transfer dynamics. It is considered that protein environment controls the excitation energy fluctuation to maximize the efficiency of excitation energy transfer. However, the detailed mechanism is still unknown. The high computational cost of reliable electronic structure calculations for excited states prevents us from carrying out a large number of sampling needed to evaluate the excitation energy fluctuations. To overcome this difficulty, we develop a new method called molecular mechanics with Shepard interpolation corrections (MMSIC), which enable us to generate potential energy surfaces for pigments in light-harvesting complexes efficiently. We illustrate the new method by application to bacteriochlorophyll a pigments in the Fenna-Matthews-Olson complex. The MMSIC calculations are more than a million times faster than the direct electronic structure calculations, and the calculated results are in good agreement with the experimental results.

  2. Synthesis and Functional Reconstitution of Light-Harvesting Complex II into Polymeric Membrane Architectures.

    PubMed

    Zapf, Thomas; Tan, Cherng-Wen Darren; Reinelt, Tobias; Huber, Christoph; Shaohua, Ding; Geifman-Shochat, Susana; Paulsen, Harald; Sinner, Eva-Kathrin

    2015-12-01

    One of most important processes in nature is the harvesting and dissipation of solar energy with the help of light-harvesting complex II (LHCII). This protein, along with its associated pigments, is the main solar-energy collector in higher plants. We aimed to generate stable, highly controllable, and sustainable polymer-based membrane systems containing LHCII-pigment complexes ready for light harvesting. LHCII was produced by cell-free protein synthesis based on wheat-germ extract, and the successful integration of LHCII and its pigments into different membrane architectures was monitored. The unidirectionality of LHCII insertion was investigated by protease digestion assays. Fluorescence measurements indicated chlorophyll integration in the presence of LHCII in spherical as well as planar bilayer architectures. Surface plasmon enhanced fluorescence spectroscopy (SPFS) was used to reveal energy transfer from chlorophyll b to chlorophyll a, which indicates native folding of the LHCII proteins.

  3. Quantum coherent energy transfer over varying pathways in single light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Hildner, Richard; Brinks, Daan; Nieder, Jana B; Cogdell, Richard J; van Hulst, Niek F

    2013-06-21

    The initial steps of photosynthesis comprise the absorption of sunlight by pigment-protein antenna complexes followed by rapid and highly efficient funneling of excitation energy to a reaction center. In these transport processes, signatures of unexpectedly long-lived coherences have emerged in two-dimensional ensemble spectra of various light-harvesting complexes. Here, we demonstrate ultrafast quantum coherent energy transfer within individual antenna complexes of a purple bacterium under physiological conditions. We find that quantum coherences between electronically coupled energy eigenstates persist at least 400 femtoseconds and that distinct energy-transfer pathways that change with time can be identified in each complex. Our data suggest that long-lived quantum coherence renders energy transfer in photosynthetic systems robust in the presence of disorder, which is a prerequisite for efficient light harvesting.

  4. Excited state coherent dynamics in light-harvesting complexes from photosynthetic marine algae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, G. H.; Wilk, K. E.; Curmi, P. M. G.; Quiney, H. M.; Davis, J. A.

    2012-08-01

    We explore coherence dynamics in light-harvesting complexes and their interactions with other electronic states and vibrational modes. This is achieved by utilizing a two-colour four-wave mixing spectroscopy to excite and analyse a specific coherence pathway in the phycocyanin-645 (PC645) light-harvesting complex. We observe the dephasing rate increase as a function of temperature and oscillations in the signal intensity as a function of waiting time which reveals coherent excitation of pathways not directly resonant with the laser pulses. This coherent excitation of non-resonant electronic states implies strong coupling to phonon modes, which is necessary if coherent energy transfer between non-resonant states is to play any role in photosynthetic energy transfer.

  5. Single-molecule exploration of photoprotective mechanisms in light-harvesting complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Hsiang-Yu; Schlau-Cohen, Gabriela S.; Gwizdala, Michal; Krüger, Tjaart; Xu, Pengqi; Croce, Roberta; van Grondelle, Rienk; Moerner, W. E.

    2015-03-01

    Plants harvest sunlight by converting light energy to electron flow through the primary events in photosynthesis. One important question is how the light harvesting machinery adapts to fluctuating sunlight intensity. As a result of various regulatory processes, efficient light harvesting and photoprotection are balanced. Some of the biological steps in the photoprotective processes have been extensively studied and physiological regulatory factors have been identified. For example, the effect of lumen pH in changing carotenoid composition has been explored. However, the importance of photophysical dynamics in the initial light-harvesting steps and its relation to photoprotection remain poorly understood. Conformational and excited-state dynamics of multi-chromophore pigment-protein complexes are often difficult to study and limited information can be extracted from ensemble-averaged measurements. To address the problem, we use the Anti-Brownian ELectrokinetic (ABEL) trap to investigate the fluorescence from individual copies of light-harvesting complex II (LHCII), the primary antenna protein in higher plants, in a solution-phase environment. Perturbative surface immobilization or encapsulation schemes are avoided, and therefore the intrinsic dynamics and heterogeneity in the fluorescence of individual proteins are revealed. We perform simultaneous measurements of fluorescence intensity (brightness), excited-state lifetime, and emission spectrum of single trapped proteins. By analyzing the correlated changes between these observables, we identify forms of LHCII with different fluorescence intensities and excited-state lifetimes. The distinct forms may be associated with different energy dissipation mechanisms in the energy transfer chain. Changes of relative populations in response to pH and carotenoid composition are observed, which may extend our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of photoprotection.

  6. Revealing linear aggregates of light harvesting antenna proteins in photosynthetic membranes.

    PubMed

    He, Yufan; Zeng, Xiaohua; Mukherjee, Saptarshi; Rajapaksha, Suneth; Kaplan, Samuel; Lu, H Peter

    2010-01-05

    How light energy is harvested in a natural photosynthetic membrane through energy transfer is closely related to the stoichiometry and arrangement of light harvesting antenna proteins in the membrane. The specific photosynthetic architecture facilitates a rapid and efficient energy transfer among the light harvesting proteins (LH2 and LH1) and to the reaction center. Here we report the identification of linear aggregates of light harvesting proteins, LH2, in the photosynthetic membranes under ambient conditions by using atomic force microscopy (AFM) imaging and spectroscopic analysis. Our results suggest that the light harvesting protein, LH2, can exist as linear aggregates of 4 +/- 2 proteins in the photosynthetic membranes and that the protein distributions are highly heterogeneous. In the photosynthetic membranes examined in our measurements, the ratio of the aggregated to the nonaggregated LH2 proteins is about 3:1 to 5:1 depending on the intensity of the illumination used during sample incubation and on the bacterial species. AFM images further identify that the LH2 proteins in the linear aggregates are monotonically tilted at an angle 4 +/- 2 degrees from the plane of the photosynthetic membranes. The aggregates result in red-shifted absorption and emission spectra that are measured using various mutant membranes, including an LH2 knockout, LH1 knockout, and LH2 at different population densities. Measuring the fluorescence lifetimes of purified LH2 and LH2 in membranes, we have observed that the LH2 proteins in membranes exhibit biexponential lifetime decays whereas the purified LH2 proteins gave single exponential lifetime decays. We attribute that the two lifetime components originate from the existence of both aggregated and nonaggregated LH2 proteins in the photosynthetic membranes.

  7. Atomistic mechanisms of rapid energy transport in light-harvesting molecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohmura, Satoshi; Koga, Shiro; Akai, Ichiro; Shimojo, Fuyuki; Kalia, Rajiv K.; Nakano, Aiichiro; Vashishta, Priya

    2011-03-01

    Synthetic supermolecules such as π-conjugated light-harvesting dendrimers efficiently harvest energy from sunlight, which is of significant importance for the global energy problem. Key to their success is rapid transport of electronic excitation energy from peripheral antennas to photochemical reaction cores, the atomistic mechanisms of which remains elusive. Here, quantum-mechanical molecular dynamics simulation incorporating nonadiabatic electronic transitions reveals the key molecular motion that significantly accelerates the energy transport based on the Dexter mechanism.

  8. Optical Approaches for Drug Screening Based Light-Harvesting Conjugated Polyelectrolyte

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-03-01

    plants and fungal ear infections in animals and humans.32-" The antifungal activities of PTP, PT and TPN toward A. niger were first studied using a broth...efficient anticancer and antifungal activities. Due to the light-harvesting ability of the electronically delocalized backbone and efficient energy...4375 Conjugated poly electrolytes with imaging capabilities for light-activated anticancer and antifungal activity Chengfen Xing’, Libing Liu1

  9. Light-Harvesting Nanotubes Formed by Supramolecular Assembly of Aromatic Oligophosphates.

    PubMed

    Bösch, Caroline D; Langenegger, Simon M; Häner, Robert

    2016-08-16

    A 2,7-disubstituted phosphodiester-linked phenanthrene trimer forms tubular structures in aqueous media. Chromophores are arranged in H-aggregates. Incorporation of small quantities of pyrene results in the development of light-harvesting nanotubes in which phenanthrenes act as antenna chromophores and pyrenes as energy acceptors. Energy collection is most efficient after excitation at the phenanthrene H-band. Fluorescence quantum yields up to 23 % are reached in pyrene doped, supramolecular nanotubes.

  10. Differential Self-Assembly of Novel Redox Crown Ethers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merithew, Andrew William

    Retinal prosthesis relies on the stimulation of living nerve tissue behind the rods and cones of the eye. The current state of the art relies on electrodes controlled by cameras which directly stimulate the nerve tissue to elicit a response to an image. These types of retinal implants have allowed for short-term crude vision in patients but have had limited long term success due to external battery packs and electroplating of the implanted electrodes. Ionic stimulation is one of the principle mechanisms that sensory neurons utilize in the generation of an action potential. In a complex transduction pathway, ionic gradients are constantly altered inside the neuron by voltage sensors or mechanically controlled gates embedded in the neuronal cell membrane; responsible for the open and close state of these ion channels. It has been demonstrated that local concentration increases of K + by direct injection proximal to the nerve can elicit nerve firing at a concentration of 15-20 mM (3-4X normal concentration) increase in K + concentration. As part of a larger concept of integrating biotechnology with nanofabrication, the materials for the development of potassium selective sequestration/storage and delivery were developed in the form of a redox-gated K+ selective crown ether. The structure of the anthraquinone-based crown was deduced by computational simulation and stoichiometry of the complex confirmed by mass spec. along with 2D diffusion NMR techniques. In this instance, the stoichiometry could be controlled by the addition of different salts to give a 1:1 complex with large, aromatic anions and a 2:1 complex with smaller anions such as triflate. The synthesis of the molecule was optimized by computational modeling and simulations of transport through an artificial membrane. The selectivity of the architecture developed was specific for K+ over Na+, the other major ionic species present in the blood. The mechanism influencing the self-assembly of this class of

  11. Direct evidence of quantum transport in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Panitchayangkoon, Gitt; Voronine, Dmitri V; Abramavicius, Darius; Caram, Justin R; Lewis, Nicholas H C; Mukamel, Shaul; Engel, Gregory S

    2011-12-27

    The photosynthetic light-harvesting apparatus moves energy from absorbed photons to the reaction center with remarkable quantum efficiency. Recently, long-lived quantum coherence has been proposed to influence efficiency and robustness of photosynthetic energy transfer in light-harvesting antennae. The quantum aspect of these dynamics has generated great interest both because of the possibility for efficient long-range energy transfer and because biology is typically considered to operate entirely in the classical regime. Yet, experiments to date show only that coherence persists long enough that it can influence dynamics, but they have not directly shown that coherence does influence energy transfer. Here, we provide experimental evidence that interaction between the bacteriochlorophyll chromophores and the protein environment surrounding them not only prolongs quantum coherence, but also spawns reversible, oscillatory energy transfer among excited states. Using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy, we observe oscillatory excited-state populations demonstrating that quantum transport of energy occurs in biological systems. The observed population oscillation suggests that these light-harvesting antennae trade energy reversibly between the protein and the chromophores. Resolving design principles evident in this biological antenna could provide inspiration for new solar energy applications.

  12. Phycobilisome Mobility and Its Role in the Regulation of Light Harvesting in Red Algae.

    PubMed

    Kaňa, Radek; Kotabová, Eva; Lukeš, Martin; Papáček, Stěpán; Matonoha, Ctirad; Liu, Lu-Ning; Prášil, Ondřej; Mullineaux, Conrad W

    2014-08-01

    Red algae represent an evolutionarily important group that gave rise to the whole red clade of photosynthetic organisms. They contain a unique combination of light-harvesting systems represented by a membrane-bound antenna and by phycobilisomes situated on thylakoid membrane surfaces. So far, very little has been revealed about the mobility of their phycobilisomes and the regulation of their light-harvesting system in general. Therefore, we carried out a detailed analysis of phycobilisome dynamics in several red alga strains and compared these results with the presence (or absence) of photoprotective mechanisms. Our data conclusively prove phycobilisome mobility in two model mesophilic red alga strains, Porphyridium cruentum and Rhodella violacea. In contrast, there was almost no phycobilisome mobility in the thermophilic red alga Cyanidium caldarium that was not caused by a decrease in lipid desaturation in this extremophile. Experimental data attributed this immobility to the strong phycobilisome-photosystem interaction that highly restricted phycobilisome movement. Variations in phycobilisome mobility reflect the different ways in which light-harvesting antennae can be regulated in mesophilic and thermophilic red algae. Fluorescence changes attributed in cyanobacteria to state transitions were observed only in mesophilic P. cruentum with mobile phycobilisomes, and they were absent in the extremophilic C. caldarium with immobile phycobilisomes. We suggest that state transitions have an important regulatory function in mesophilic red algae; however, in thermophilic red algae, this process is replaced by nonphotochemical quenching.

  13. Direct evidence of quantum transport in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes

    PubMed Central

    Panitchayangkoon, Gitt; Voronine, Dmitri V.; Abramavicius, Darius; Caram, Justin R.; Lewis, Nicholas H. C.; Mukamel, Shaul; Engel, Gregory S.

    2011-01-01

    The photosynthetic light-harvesting apparatus moves energy from absorbed photons to the reaction center with remarkable quantum efficiency. Recently, long-lived quantum coherence has been proposed to influence efficiency and robustness of photosynthetic energy transfer in light-harvesting antennae. The quantum aspect of these dynamics has generated great interest both because of the possibility for efficient long-range energy transfer and because biology is typically considered to operate entirely in the classical regime. Yet, experiments to date show only that coherence persists long enough that it can influence dynamics, but they have not directly shown that coherence does influence energy transfer. Here, we provide experimental evidence that interaction between the bacteriochlorophyll chromophores and the protein environment surrounding them not only prolongs quantum coherence, but also spawns reversible, oscillatory energy transfer among excited states. Using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy, we observe oscillatory excited-state populations demonstrating that quantum transport of energy occurs in biological systems. The observed population oscillation suggests that these light-harvesting antennae trade energy reversibly between the protein and the chromophores. Resolving design principles evident in this biological antenna could provide inspiration for new solar energy applications. PMID:22167798

  14. Metal-enhanced fluorescence of chlorophylls in light-harvesting complexes coupled to silver nanowires.

    PubMed

    Kowalska, Dorota; Krajnik, Bartosz; Olejnik, Maria; Twardowska, Magdalena; Czechowski, Nikodem; Hofmann, Eckhard; Mackowski, Sebastian

    2013-01-01

    We investigate metal-enhanced fluorescence of peridinin-chlorophyll protein coupled to silver nanowires using optical microscopy combined with spectrally and time-resolved fluorescence techniques. In particular we study two different sample geometries: first, in which the light-harvesting complexes are deposited onto silver nanowires, and second, where solution of both nanostructures are mixed prior deposition on a substrate. The results indicate that for the peridinin-chlorophyll complexes placed in the vicinity of the silver nanowires we observe higher intensities of fluorescence emission as compared to the reference sample, where no nanowires are present. Enhancement factors estimated for the sample where the light-harvesting complexes are mixed together with the silver nanowires prior deposition on a substrate are generally larger in comparison to the other geometry of a hybrid nanostructure. While fluorescence spectra are identical both in terms of overall shape and maximum wavelength for peridinin-chlorophyll-protein complexes both isolated and coupled to metallic nanostructures, we conclude that interaction with plasmon excitations in the latter remains neutral to the functionality of the biological system. Fluorescence transients measured for the PCP complexes coupled to the silver nanowires indicate shortening of the fluorescence lifetime pointing towards modifications of radiative rate due to plasmonic interactions. Our results can be applied for developing ways to plasmonically control the light-harvesting capability of photosynthetic complexes.

  15. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    DOE PAGES

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; ...

    2016-02-09

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines themore » selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. In conclusion, we suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy.« less

  16. Design principles of natural light-harvesting as revealed by single molecule spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krüger, T. P. J.; van Grondelle, R.

    2016-01-01

    Biology offers a boundless source of adaptation, innovation, and inspiration. A wide range of photosynthetic organisms exist that are capable of harvesting solar light in an exceptionally efficient way, using abundant and low-cost materials. These natural light-harvesting complexes consist of proteins that strongly bind a high density of chromophores to capture solar photons and rapidly transfer the excitation energy to the photochemical reaction centre. The amount of harvested light is also delicately tuned to the level of solar radiation to maintain a constant energy throughput at the reaction centre and avoid the accumulation of the products of charge separation. In this Review, recent developments in the understanding of light-harvesting by plants will be discussed, based on results obtained from single molecule spectroscopy studies. Three design principles of the main light-harvesting antenna of plants will be highlighted: (a) fine, photoactive control over the intrinsic protein disorder to efficiently use intrinsically available thermal energy dissipation mechanisms; (b) the design of the protein microenvironment of a low-energy chromophore dimer to control the amount of shade absorption; (c) the design of the exciton manifold to ensure efficient funneling of the harvested light to the terminal emitter cluster.

  17. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-02-09

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. In conclusion, we suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy.

  18. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-02-01

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. We suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy.

  19. Circular Dichroism of Carotenoids in Bacterial Light-Harvesting Complexes: Experiments and Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Georgakopoulou, S.; van Grondelle, R.; van der Zwan, G.

    2004-01-01

    In this work we investigate the origin and characteristics of the circular dichroism (CD) spectrum of rhodopin glucoside and lycopene in the light-harvesting 2 complex of Rhodopseudomonas acidophila and Rhodospirillum molischianum, respectively. We successfully model their absorption and CD spectra based on the high-resolution structures. We assume that these spectra originate from seven interacting transition dipole moments: the first corresponds to the 0-0 transition of the carotenoid, whereas the remaining six represent higher vibronic components of the S2 state. From the absorption spectra we get an estimate of the Franck-Condon factors of these transitions. Furthermore, we investigate the broadening mechanisms that lead to the final shape of the spectra and get an insight into the interaction energy between carotenoids. Finally, we examine the consequences of rotations of the carotenoid transition dipole moment and of deformations in the light-harvesting 2 complex rings. Comparison of the modeled carotenoid spectra with modeled spectra of the bacteriochlorophyll QY region leads to a refinement of the modeling procedure and an improvement of all calculated results. We therefore propose that the combined carotenoid and bacteriochlorophyll CD can be used as an accurate reflection of the overall structure of the light-harvesting complexes. PMID:15326029

  20. Controlled self-assembly of hydrophobic quantum dots through silanization.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ping; Ando, Masanori; Murase, Norio

    2011-09-01

    We demonstrate the formation of one-, two-, and three-dimensional nanocomposites through the self-assembly of silanized CdSe/ZnS quantum dots (QDs) by using a controlled sol-gel process. The self-assembly behavior of the QDs was created when partially hydrolyzed silicon alkoxide monomers replaced hydrophobic ligands on the QDs. We examined systematically self-assembly conditions such as solvent components and QD sizes in order to elucidate the formation mechanism of various QD nanocomposites. The QD nanocomposites were assembled in water phase or on the interface of water and oil phase in emulsions. The partially hydrolyzed silicon alkoxides act as intermolecules to assemble the QDs. The QD nanocomposites with well-defined solid or hollow spherical, fiber-like, sheet-like, and pearl-like morphologies were prepared by adjusting the experimental conditions. The high photoluminescence efficiency of the prepared QD nanocomposites suggests partially hydrolyzed silicon alkoxides reduced the surface deterioration of QDs during self-assembly. These techniques are applicable to other hydrophobic QDs for fabricating complex QD nanocomposites.

  1. pH-directed self-assembling helical peptide conformation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The beta-sheet and alpha-helix peptide conformation are two of the most fundamentally ordered secondary structures found in proteins and peptides. They also give rise to self-assembling motifs that form macromolecular channels and nanostructures. Through design these conformations can yield enhance...

  2. Photocontrol over cooperative porphyrin self-assembly with phenylazopyridine ligands.

    PubMed

    Hirose, Takashi; Helmich, Floris; Meijer, E W

    2013-01-02

    The cooperative self-assembly of chiral zinc porphyrins is regulated by a photoresponsive phenylazopyridine ligand. Porphyrin stacks depolymerize into dimers upon axial ligation and the strength of the coordination is regulated by its photoinduced isomerization, which shows more than 95 % conversion ratio for both photostationary states.

  3. Developmental self-assembly of a DNA tetrahedron.

    PubMed

    Sadowski, John P; Calvert, Colby R; Zhang, David Yu; Pierce, Niles A; Yin, Peng

    2014-04-22

    Kinetically controlled isothermal growth is fundamental to biological development, yet it remains challenging to rationally design molecular systems that self-assemble isothermally into complex geometries via prescribed assembly and disassembly pathways. By exploiting the programmable chemistry of base pairing, sophisticated spatial and temporal control have been demonstrated in DNA self-assembly, but largely as separate pursuits. By integrating temporal with spatial control, here we demonstrate the "developmental" self-assembly of a DNA tetrahedron, where a prescriptive molecular program orchestrates the kinetic pathways by which DNA molecules isothermally self-assemble into a well-defined three-dimensional wireframe geometry. In this reaction, nine DNA reactants initially coexist metastably, but upon catalysis by a DNA initiator molecule, navigate 24 individually characterizable intermediate states via prescribed assembly pathways, organized both in series and in parallel, to arrive at the tetrahedral final product. In contrast to previous work on dynamic DNA nanotechnology, this developmental program coordinates growth of ringed substructures into a three-dimensional wireframe superstructure, taking a step toward the goal of kinetically controlled isothermal growth of complex three-dimensional geometries.

  4. New Metal-organic Polymers Through Subcomponent Self-Assembly

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-07-27

    material using subcomponent self-assembly. We developed the synthesis of double helical polymeric species according to the general procedure...to use - diketones as subcomponents for polymers. She then shifted her efforts to other projects, funded by the European Research Council. Because

  5. Nano-imaging enabled via self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    McLeod, Euan; Ozcan, Aydogan

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Imaging object details with length scales below approximately 200 nm has been historically difficult for conventional microscope objective lenses because of their inability to resolve features smaller than one-half the optical wavelength. Here we review some of the recent approaches to surpass this limit by harnessing self-assembly as a fabrication mechanism. Self-assembly can be used to form individual nano- and micro-lenses, as well as to form extended arrays of such lenses. These lenses have been shown to enable imaging with resolutions as small as 50 nm half-pitch using visible light, which is well below the Abbe diffraction limit. Furthermore, self-assembled nano-lenses can be used to boost contrast and signal levels from small nano-particles, enabling them to be detected relative to background noise. Finally, alternative nano-imaging applications of self-assembly are discussed, including three-dimensional imaging, enhanced coupling from light-emitting diodes, and the fabrication of contrast agents such as quantum dots and nanoparticles. PMID:25506387

  6. Self-assembling biomolecular catalysts for hydrogen production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordan, Paul C.; Patterson, Dustin P.; Saboda, Kendall N.; Edwards, Ethan J.; Miettinen, Heini M.; Basu, Gautam; Thielges, Megan C.; Douglas, Trevor

    2016-02-01

    The chemistry of highly evolved protein-based compartments has inspired the design of new catalytically active materials that self-assemble from biological components. A frontier of this biodesign is the potential to contribute new catalytic systems for the production of sustainable fuels, such as hydrogen. Here, we show the encapsulation and protection of an active hydrogen-producing and oxygen-tolerant [NiFe]-hydrogenase, sequestered within the capsid of the bacteriophage P22 through directed self-assembly. We co-opted Escherichia coli for biomolecular synthesis and assembly of this nanomaterial by expressing and maturing the EcHyd-1 hydrogenase prior to expression of the P22 coat protein, which subsequently self assembles. By probing the infrared spectroscopic signatures and catalytic activity of the engineered material, we demonstrate that the capsid provides stability and protection to the hydrogenase cargo. These results illustrate how combining biological function with directed supramolecular self-assembly can be used to create new materials for sustainable catalysis.

  7. Molecular Recognition Directed Self-Assembly of Supramolecular Architectures

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1994-06-30

    chemistry. The ability of these supramolecular architectures to form liquid crystalline phases is determined by the shape of the self-assembled...be discussed. In the case of TMV-like supramolecular architectures a comparison between various supramolecdr (generated via H-bonding, ionic and...molecular, macromolecular and supramolecular chemistry. The ability of these supramolecular architectures to form liquid crystalline phases is determined

  8. Self-assembly from milli- to nanoscales: methods and applications

    PubMed Central

    Mastrangeli, M; Abbasi, S; Varel, C; Van Hoof, C; Celis, J-P; Böhringer, K F

    2009-01-01

    The design and fabrication techniques for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and nanodevices are progressing rapidly. However, due to material and process flow incompatibilities in the fabrication of sensors, actuators and electronic circuitry, a final packaging step is often necessary to integrate all components of a heterogeneous microsystem on a common substrate. Robotic pick-and-place, although accurate and reliable at larger scales, is a serial process that downscales unfavorably due to stiction problems, fragility and sheer number of components. Self-assembly, on the other hand, is parallel and can be used for device sizes ranging from millimeters to nanometers. In this review, the state-of-the-art in methods and applications for self-assembly is reviewed. Methods for assembling three-dimensional (3D) MEMS structures out of two-dimensional (2D) ones are described. The use of capillary forces for folding 2D plates into 3D structures, as well as assembling parts onto a common substrate or aggregating parts to each other into 2D or 3D structures, is discussed. Shape matching and guided assembly by magnetic forces and electric fields are also reviewed. Finally, colloidal self-assembly and DNA-based self-assembly, mainly used at the nanoscale, are surveyed, and aspects of theoretical modeling of stochastic assembly processes are discussed. PMID:20209016

  9. Soft self-assembled nanoparticles with temperature-dependent properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rovigatti, Lorenzo; Capone, Barbara; Likos, Christos N.

    2016-02-01

    The fabrication of versatile building blocks that reliably self-assemble into desired ordered and disordered phases is amongst the hottest topics in contemporary materials science. To this end, microscopic units of varying complexity, aimed at assembling the target phases, have been thought, designed, investigated and built. Such a path usually requires laborious fabrication techniques, especially when specific functionalisation of the building blocks is required. Telechelic star polymers, i.e., star polymers made of a number of f di-block copolymers consisting of solvophobic and solvophilic monomers grafted on a central anchoring point, spontaneously self-assemble into soft patchy particles featuring attractive spots (patches) on the surface. Here we show that the tunability of such a system can be widely extended by controlling the physical and chemical parameters of the solution. Indeed, under fixed external conditions the self-assembly behaviour depends only on the number of arms and on the ratio of solvophobic to solvophilic monomers. However, changes in temperature and/or solvent quality make it possible to reliably change the number and size of the attractive patches. This allows the steering of the mesoscopic self-assembly behaviour without modifying the microscopic constituents. Interestingly, we also demonstrate that diverse combinations of the parameters can generate stars with the same number of patches but different radial and angular stiffness. This mechanism could provide a neat way of further fine-tuning the elastic properties of the supramolecular network without changing its topology.

  10. Self-assembled peptide nanostructures for functional materials.

    PubMed

    Ekiz, Melis Sardan; Cinar, Goksu; Khalily, Mohammad Aref; Guler, Mustafa O

    2016-10-07

    Nature is an important inspirational source for scientists, and presents complex and elegant examples of adaptive and intelligent systems created by self-assembly. Significant effort has been devoted to understanding these sophisticated systems. The self-assembly process enables us to create supramolecular nanostructures with high order and complexity, and peptide-based self-assembling building blocks can serve as suitable platforms to construct nanostructures showing diverse features and applications. In this review, peptide-based supramolecular assemblies will be discussed in terms of their synthesis, design, characterization and application. Peptide nanostructures are categorized based on their chemical and physical properties and will be examined by rationalizing the influence of peptide design on the resulting morphology and the methods employed to characterize these high order complex systems. Moreover, the application of self-assembled peptide nanomaterials as functional materials in information technologies and environmental sciences will be reviewed by providing examples from recently published high-impact studies.

  11. Sequential programmable self-assembly: Role of cooperative interactions

    SciTech Connect

    Jonathan D. Halverson; Tkachenko, Alexei V.

    2016-03-04

    Here, we propose a general strategy of “sequential programmable self-assembly” that enables a bottom-up design of arbitrary multi-particle architectures on nano- and microscales. We show that a naive realization of this scheme, based on the pairwise additive interactions between particles, has fundamental limitations that lead to a relatively high error rate. This can be overcome by using cooperative interparticle binding. The cooperativity is a well known feature of many biochemical processes, responsible, e.g., for signaling and regulations in living systems. Here we propose to utilize a similar strategy for high precision self-assembly, and show that DNA-mediated interactions provide a convenient platform for its implementation. In particular, we outline a specific design of a DNA-based complex which we call “DNA spider,” that acts as a smart interparticle linker and provides a built-in cooperativity of binding. We demonstrate versatility of the sequential self-assembly based on spider-functionalized particles by designing several mesostructures of increasing complexity and simulating their assembly process. This includes a number of finite and repeating structures, in particular, the so-called tetrahelix and its several derivatives. Due to its generality, this approach allows one to design and successfully self-assemble virtually any structure made of a “GEOMAG” magnetic construction toy, out of nanoparticles. According to our results, once the binding cooperativity is strong enough, the sequential self-assembly becomes essentially error-free.

  12. Theoretical Modelling of Self-Assembly of Molecular Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mura, Manuela; Martsinovich, Natalia; Kantorovich, Lev

    2008-03-01

    The phenomenon of self-assembly of atomic and molecular superstructures on crystal surfaces has attracted an increasing interest in nanotechnology. Self-organised nano-templates where the self-assembled monolayer traps other molecules with selected functional properties, can be used as building blocks for larger nanoscale structures. These superstructures can form chiral domains ranging from 1D chains to 2D monolayers. In particular, there have been many scanning tunneling microscopy (STM)studies of self-assembly of melamine, perylene tetra-carboxylic di-imide(PTCDI) or perylene tetra-carboxylic di-anhydride (PTCDA) molecules on the Au(111). STM images of these networks do not reveal the exact details of the intermolecular bonding and process of network growth. It is therefore the task of theory to determine the exact atomic structure of these networks. We present a theoretical study of self-assembly of molecular networks based on different molecules by using a systematic approach to build molecular superstructures. The energies of these structures are calculated using the density-functional theory SIESTA code. The theoretically predicted monolayer structures are in very good agreement with the results of STM measurements.

  13. Self-assembling multidomain peptide fibers with aromatic cores

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Self-assembling multidomain peptides have been shown to have desirable properties, such as the ability to form hydrogels that rapidly recover following shear-thinning and the potential to be tailored by amino acid selection to vary their elasticity and encapsulate and deliver proteins and cells. Her...

  14. Synthesis of perylene-porphyrin building blocks and polymers thereof for the production of light-harvesting arrays

    DOEpatents

    Loewe, Robert S.; Tomizaki, Kin-ya; Lindsey, Jonathan S.

    2005-07-12

    The present invention provides methods, compounds, and compositions for the synthesis of light harvesting arrays, such arrays comprising: (a) a first substrate comprising a first electrode; and (b) a layer of light harvesting rods electrically coupled to said first electrode, each of said light harvesting rods comprising a polymer of Formula I: wherein m is at least 1; X.sup.1 is a charge separation group, and X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 are chromophores. At least one of X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 has at least one perylene group coupled thereto.

  15. Efficient energy transfer in light-harvesting systems, I: optimal temperature, reorganization energy and spatial-temporal correlations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jianlan; Liu, Fan; Shen, Young; Cao, Jianshu; Silbey, Robert J.

    2010-10-01

    Understanding the mechanisms of efficient and robust energy transfer in light-harvesting systems provides new insights for the optimal design of artificial systems. In this paper, we use the Fenna-Matthews-Olson (FMO) protein complex and phycocyanin 645 (PC 645) to explore the general dependence on physical parameters that help maximize the efficiency and maintain its stability. With the Haken-Strobl model, the maximal energy transfer efficiency (ETE) is achieved under an intermediate optimal value of dephasing rate. To avoid the infinite temperature assumption in the Haken-Strobl model and the failure of the Redfield equation in predicting the Forster rate behavior, we use the generalized Bloch-Redfield (GBR) equation approach to correctly describe dissipative exciton dynamics, and we find that maximal ETE can be achieved under various physical conditions, including temperature, reorganization energy and spatial-temporal correlations in noise. We also identify regimes of reorganization energy where the ETE changes monotonically with temperature or spatial correlation and therefore cannot be optimized with respect to these two variables.

  16. Cell differentiation on disk- and string-shaped hydrogels fabricated from Ca(2+) -responsive self-assembling peptides.

    PubMed

    Fukunaga, Kazuto; Tsutsumi, Hiroshi; Mihara, Hisakazu

    2016-11-04

    We recently developed a self-assembling peptide, E1Y9, that self-assembles into nanofibers and forms a hydrogel in the presence of Ca(2+) . E1Y9 derivatives conjugated with functional peptide sequences derived from extracellular matrices (ECMs) reportedly self-assemble into peptide nanofibers that enhance cell adhesion and differentiation. In this study, E1Y9/E1Y9-IKVAV-mixed hydrogels were constructed to serve as artificial ECMs that promote cell differentiation. E1Y9 and E1Y9-IKVAV co-assembled into networked nanofibers, and hydrogels with disk and string shapes were formed in response to Ca(2+) treatment. The neuronal differentiation of PC12 cells was facilitated on hydrogels of both shapes that contained the IKVAV motifs. Moreover, long neurites extended along the long axis of the string-shaped gel, suggesting that the structure of hydrogels of this shape can affect cellular orientation. Thus, E1Y9 hydrogels can potentially be used as artificial ECMs with desirable bioactivities and shapes that could be useful in tissue engineering applications. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biopolymers (Pept Sci) 106: 476-483, 2016.

  17. Structural diversity in the self-assembly of pseudopeptidic macrocycles.

    PubMed

    Alfonso, Ignacio; Bru, Miriam; Burguete, M Isabel; García-Verdugo, Eduardo; Luis, Santiago V

    2010-01-25

    The self-assembling abilities of several pseudopeptidic macrocycles have been thoroughly studied both in the solid (SEM, TEM, FTIR) and in solution (NMR, UV, CD, FTIR) states. Detailed microscopy revealed large differences in the morphology of the self-assembling micro/nanostructures depending on the macrocyclic chemical structures. Self-assembly was triggered by the presence of additional methylene groups or by changing from para to meta geometry of the aromatic phenylene backbone moiety. More interestingly, the nature of the side chain also plays a fundamental role in some of the obtained nanostructures, thus producing structures from long fibers to hollow spheres. These nanostructures were obtained in different solvents and on different surfaces, thus implying that the chemical information for the self-assembly is contained in the molecular structure. Dilution NMR studies (chemical shift and self-diffusion rates) suggest the formation of incipient aggregates in solution by a combination of hydrogen-bonding and pi-pi interactions, thus implicating amide and aryl groups, respectively. Electronic spectroscopy further supports the pi-pi interactions because the compounds that lead to fibers show large hypochromic shifts in the UV spectra. Moreover, the fiber-forming macrocycles also showed a more intense CD signature. The hydrogen-bonding interactions within the nanostructures were also characterized by attenuated total-reflectance FTIR spectroscopy, which allowed us to monitor the complete transition from the solution to the dried nanostructure. Overall, we concluded that the self-assembly of this family of pseudopeptidic macrocycles is dictated by a synergic action of hydrogen-bonding and pi-pi interactions. The feasibility and geometrical disposition of these interactions finally render a hierarchical organization, which has been rationalized with a proposal of a model. The understanding of the process at the molecular level has allowed us to prepare hybrid soft

  18. Building polyhedra by self-assembly: theory and experiment.

    PubMed

    Kaplan, Ryan; Klobušický, Joseph; Pandey, Shivendra; Gracias, David H; Menon, Govind

    2014-01-01

    We investigate the utility of a mathematical framework based on discrete geometry to model biological and synthetic self-assembly. Our primary biological example is the self-assembly of icosahedral viruses; our synthetic example is surface-tension-driven self-folding polyhedra. In both instances, the process of self-assembly is modeled by decomposing the polyhedron into a set of partially formed intermediate states. The set of all intermediates is called the configuration space, pathways of assembly are modeled as paths in the configuration space, and the kinetics and yield of assembly are modeled by rate equations, Markov chains, or cost functions on the configuration space. We review an interesting interplay between biological function and mathematical structure in viruses in light of this framework. We discuss in particular: (i) tiling theory as a coarse-grained description of all-atom models; (ii) the building game-a growth model for the formation of polyhedra; and (iii) the application of these models to the self-assembly of the bacteriophage MS2. We then use a similar framework to model self-folding polyhedra. We use a discrete folding algorithm to compute a configuration space that idealizes surface-tension-driven self-folding and analyze pathways of assembly and dominant intermediates. These computations are then compared with experimental observations of a self-folding dodecahedron with side 300 μm. In both models, despite a combinatorial explosion in the size of the configuration space, a few pathways and intermediates dominate self-assembly. For self-folding polyhedra, the dominant intermediates have fewer degrees of freedom than comparable intermediates, and are thus more rigid. The concentration of assembly pathways on a few intermediates with distinguished geometric properties is biologically and physically important, and suggests deeper mathematical structure.

  19. Probabilistic Analysis of Pattern Formation in Monotonic Self-Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Tyler G.; Garzon, Max H.; Deaton, Russell J.

    2015-01-01

    Inspired by biological systems, self-assembly aims to construct complex structures. It functions through piece-wise, local interactions among component parts and has the potential to produce novel materials and devices at the nanoscale. Algorithmic self-assembly models the product of self-assembly as the output of some computational process, and attempts to control the process of assembly algorithmically. Though providing fundamental insights, these computational models have yet to fully account for the randomness that is inherent in experimental realizations, which tend to be based on trial and error methods. In order to develop a method of analysis that addresses experimental parameters, such as error and yield, this work focuses on the capability of assembly systems to produce a pre-determined set of target patterns, either accurately or perhaps only approximately. Self-assembly systems that assemble patterns that are similar to the targets in a significant percentage are “strong” assemblers. In addition, assemblers should predominantly produce target patterns, with a small percentage of errors or junk. These definitions approximate notions of yield and purity in chemistry and manufacturing. By combining these definitions, a criterion for efficient assembly is developed that can be used to compare the ability of different assembly systems to produce a given target set. Efficiency is a composite measure of the accuracy and purity of an assembler. Typical examples in algorithmic assembly are assessed in the context of these metrics. In addition to validating the method, they also provide some insight that might be used to guide experimentation. Finally, some general results are established that, for efficient assembly, imply that every target pattern is guaranteed to be assembled with a minimum common positive probability, regardless of its size, and that a trichotomy exists to characterize the global behavior of typical efficient, monotonic self-assembly

  20. Flexible Fabrication of Shape-Controlled Collagen Building Blocks for Self-Assembly of 3D Microtissues.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xu; Meng, Zhaoxu; Ma, Jingyun; Shi, Yang; Xu, Hui; Lykkemark, Simon; Qin, Jianhua

    2015-08-12

    Creating artificial tissue-like structures that possess the functionality, specificity, and architecture of native tissues remains a big challenge. A new and straightforward strategy for generating shape-controlled collagen building blocks with a well-defined architecture is presented, which can be used for self-assembly of complex 3D microtissues. Collagen blocks with tunable geometries are controllably produced and released via a membrane-templated microdevice. The formation of functional microtissues by embedding tissue-specific cells into collagen blocks with expression of specific proteins is described. The spontaneous self-assembly of cell-laden collagen blocks into organized tissue constructs with predetermined configurations is demonstrated, which are largely driven by the synergistic effects of cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions. This new strategy would open up new avenues for the study of tissue/organ morphogenesis, and tissue engineering applications.

  1. Defects in the Self-Assembly of Block Copolymers and Their Relevance for Directed Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Li, Weihua; Müller, Marcus

    2015-01-01

    Block copolymer self-assembly provides a platform for fabricating dense, ordered nanostructures by encoding information in the chemical architecture of multicomponent macromolecules. Depending on the volume fraction of the components and chain topology, these macromolecules form a variety of spatially periodic microphases in thermodynamic equilibrium. The kinetics of self-assembly, however, often results in initial morphologies with defects, and the subsequent ordering is protracted. Different strategies have been devised to direct the self-assembly of copolymer materials by external fields to align and perfect the self-assembled nanostructures. Understanding and controlling the thermodynamics of defects, their response to external fields, and their dynamics is important because applications in microelectronics either require extremely low defect densities or aim at generating specific defects at predetermined locations to fabricate irregular device-oriented structures for integrated circuits. In this review, we discuss defect morphologies of block copolymers in the bulk and thin films, highlighting (a) analogies to and differences from defects in other crystalline materials, (b) the stability of defects and their dynamics, and (c) the influence of external fields.

  2. Hierarchical self-assembly: Self-organized nanostructures in a nematically ordered matrix of self-assembled polymeric chains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mubeena, Shaikh; Chatterji, Apratim

    2015-03-01

    We report many different nanostructures which are formed when model nanoparticles of different sizes (diameter σn) are allowed to aggregate in a background matrix of semiflexible self-assembled polymeric wormlike micellar chains. The different nanostructures are formed by the dynamical arrest of phase-separating mixtures of micellar monomers and nanoparticles. The different morphologies obtained are the result of an interplay of the available free volume, the elastic energy of deformation of polymers, the density (chemical potential) of the nanoparticles in the polymer matrix, and, of course, the ratio of the size of self-assembling nanoparticles and self-avoidance diameter of polymeric chains. We have used a hybrid semi-grand-canonical Monte Carlo simulation scheme to obtain the (nonequilibrium) phase diagram of the self-assembled nanostructures. We observe rodlike structures of nanoparticles which get self-assembled in the gaps between the nematically ordered chains, as well as percolating gel-like network of conjoined nanotubes. We also find a totally unexpected interlocked crystalline phase of nanoparticles and monomers, in which each crystal plane of nanoparticles is separated by planes of perfectly organized polymer chains. We identified the condition which leads to such interlocked crystal structure. We suggest experimental possibilities of how the results presented in this paper could be used to obtain different nanostructures in the laboratory.

  3. Hierarchical self-assembly: Self-organized nanostructures in a nematically ordered matrix of self-assembled polymeric chains.

    PubMed

    Mubeena, Shaikh; Chatterji, Apratim

    2015-03-01

    We report many different nanostructures which are formed when model nanoparticles of different sizes (diameter σn) are allowed to aggregate in a background matrix of semiflexible self-assembled polymeric wormlike micellar chains. The different nanostructures are formed by the dynamical arrest of phase-separating mixtures of micellar monomers and nanoparticles. The different morphologies obtained are the result of an interplay of the available free volume, the elastic energy of deformation of polymers, the density (chemical potential) of the nanoparticles in the polymer matrix, and, of course, the ratio of the size of self-assembling nanoparticles and self-avoidance diameter of polymeric chains. We have used a hybrid semi-grand-canonical Monte Carlo simulation scheme to obtain the (nonequilibrium) phase diagram of the self-assembled nanostructures. We observe rodlike structures of nanoparticles which get self-assembled in the gaps between the nematically ordered chains, as well as percolating gel-like network of conjoined nanotubes. We also find a totally unexpected interlocked crystalline phase of nanoparticles and monomers, in which each crystal plane of nanoparticles is separated by planes of perfectly organized polymer chains. We identified the condition which leads to such interlocked crystal structure. We suggest experimental possibilities of how the results presented in this paper could be used to obtain different nanostructures in the laboratory.

  4. Self-Assembled Epitaxial Au–Oxide Vertically Aligned Nanocomposites for Nanoscale Metamaterials

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Leigang; Sun, Liuyang; Gomez-Diaz, Juan Sebastian; Hogan, Nicki L.; Lu, Ping; Khatkhatay, Fauzia; Zhang, Wenrui; Jian, Jie; Huang, Jijie; Su, Qing; Fan, Meng; Jacob, Clement; Li, Jin; Zhang, Xinghang; Jia, Quanxi; Sheldon, Matthew; Alù, Andrea; Li, Xiaoqin; Wang, Haiyan

    2016-05-17

    Metamaterials made of nanoscale inclusions or artificial unit cells exhibit exotic optical properties that do not exist in natural materials. Promising applications, such as super-resolution imaging, cloaking, hyperbolic propagation, and ultrafast phase velocities have been demonstrated based on mostly micrometer-scale metamaterials and few nanoscale metamaterials. To date, most metamaterials are created using costly and tedious fabrication techniques with limited paths toward reliable large-scale fabrication. In this work, we demonstrate the one-step direct growth of self-assembled epitaxial metal–oxide nanocomposites as a drastically different approach to fabricating large-area nanostructured metamaterials. Using pulsed laser deposition, we fabricated nanocomposite films with vertically aligned gold (Au) nanopillars (~20 nm in diameter) embedded in various oxide matrices with high epitaxial quality. Strong, broad absorption features in the measured absorbance spectrum are clear signatures of plasmon resonances of Au nanopillars. By tuning their densities on selected substrates, anisotropic optical properties are demonstrated via angular dependent and polarization resolved reflectivity measurements and reproduced by full-wave simulations and effective medium theory. Our model predicts exotic properties, such as zero permittivity responses and topological transitions. In conclusion, our studies suggest that these self-assembled metal–oxide nanostructures provide an exciting new material platform to control and enhance optical response at nanometer scales.

  5. Smart gating membranes with in situ self-assembled responsive nanogels as functional gates

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Feng; Xie, Rui; Liu, Zhuang; Ju, Xiao-Jie; Wang, Wei; Lin, Shuo; Chu, Liang-Yin

    2015-01-01

    Smart gating membranes, inspired by the gating function of ion channels across cell membranes, are artificial membranes composed of non-responsive porous membrane substrates and responsive gates in the membrane pores that are able to dramatically regulate the trans-membrane transport of substances in response to environmental stimuli. Easy fabrication, high flux, significant response and strong mechanical strength are critical for the versatility of such smart gating membranes. Here we show a novel and simple strategy for one-step fabrication of smart gating membranes with three-dimensionally interconnected networks of functional gates, by self-assembling responsive nanogels on membrane pore surfaces in situ during a vapor-induced phase separation process for membrane formation. The smart gating membranes with in situ self-assembled responsive nanogels as functional gates show large flux, significant response and excellent mechanical property simultaneously. Because of the easy fabrication method as well as the concurrent enhancement of flux, response and mechanical property, the proposed smart gating membranes will expand the scope of membrane applications, and provide ever better performances in their applications. PMID:26434387

  6. Dynamic control of chirality and self-assembly of double-stranded helicates with light.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Depeng; van Leeuwen, Thomas; Cheng, Jinling; Feringa, Ben L

    2017-03-01

    Helicity switching in biological and artificial systems is a fundamental process that allows for the dynamic control of structures and their functions. In contrast to chemical approaches to responsive behaviour in helicates, the use of light as an external stimulus offers unique opportunities to invert the chirality of helical structures in a non-invasive manner with high spatiotemporal precision. Here, we report that unidirectional rotary motors with connecting oligobipyridyl ligands, which can dynamically change their chirality upon irradiation, assemble into metal helicates that are responsive to light. The motor function controls the self-assembly process as well as the helical chirality, allowing switching between oligomers and double-stranded helicates with distinct handedness. The unidirectionality of the light-induced motion governs the sequence of programmable steps, enabling the highly regulated self-assembly of fully responsive helical structures. This discovery paves the way for the future development of new chirality-dependent photoresponsive systems including smart materials, enantioselective catalysts and light-driven molecular machines.

  7. Tissue engineering by self-assembly and bio-printing of living cells

    PubMed Central

    Jakab, Karoly; Marga, Francoise; Norotte, Cyrille; Murphy, Keith; Vunjak-Novakovic, Gordana; Forgacs, Gabor

    2013-01-01

    Biofabrication of living structures with desired topology and functionality requires the interdisciplinary effort of practitioners of the physical, life, medical and engineering sciences. Such efforts are being undertaken in many laboratories around the world. Numerous approaches are being pursued, such as those based on the use of natural or artificial scaffolds, decellularized cadaveric extracellular matrices and lately bioprinting. To be successful in this endeavor it is crucial to provide in vitro micro-environmental clues for the cells resembling those in the organism. Therefore scaffolds populated with differentiated cells or stem cells of increasing complexity and sophistication are being fabricated. However, scaffolds, no matter how sophisticated they are, can cause problems stemming from their degradation, eliciting immunogenic reactions and other a priori unforeseen complications. It is also being realized that ultimately the best approach is to rely on the self-assembly and self-organizing properties of cells and tissues and the innate regenerative capability of the organism itself, not just simply prepare tissue and organ structures in vitro followed by their implantation. Here we briefly review the different strategies for the fabrication of three-dimensional biological structures, in particular bioprinting. We detail a fully biological, scaffoldless, print-based engineering approach that uses self-assembling multicellular units as bioink particles and employs early developmental morphogenetic principles, such as cell sorting and tissue fusion. PMID:20811127

  8. Dynamic control of chirality and self-assembly of double-stranded helicates with light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Depeng; van Leeuwen, Thomas; Cheng, Jinling; Feringa, Ben L.

    2016-11-01

    Helicity switching in biological and artificial systems is a fundamental process that allows for the dynamic control of structures and their functions. In contrast to chemical approaches to responsive behaviour in helicates, the use of light as an external stimulus offers unique opportunities to invert the chirality of helical structures in a non-invasive manner with high spatiotemporal precision. Here, we report that unidirectional rotary motors with connecting oligobipyridyl ligands, which can dynamically change their chirality upon irradiation, assemble into metal helicates that are responsive to light. The motor function controls the self-assembly process as well as the helical chirality, allowing switching between oligomers and double-stranded helicates with distinct handedness. The unidirectionality of the light-induced motion governs the sequence of programmable steps, enabling the highly regulated self-assembly of fully responsive helical structures. This discovery paves the way for the future development of new chirality-dependent photoresponsive systems including smart materials, enantioselective catalysts and light-driven molecular machines.

  9. Self-Assembled Epitaxial Au–Oxide Vertically Aligned Nanocomposites for Nanoscale Metamaterials

    DOE PAGES

    Li, Leigang; Sun, Liuyang; Gomez-Diaz, Juan Sebastian; ...

    2016-05-17

    Metamaterials made of nanoscale inclusions or artificial unit cells exhibit exotic optical properties that do not exist in natural materials. Promising applications, such as super-resolution imaging, cloaking, hyperbolic propagation, and ultrafast phase velocities have been demonstrated based on mostly micrometer-scale metamaterials and few nanoscale metamaterials. To date, most metamaterials are created using costly and tedious fabrication techniques with limited paths toward reliable large-scale fabrication. In this work, we demonstrate the one-step direct growth of self-assembled epitaxial metal–oxide nanocomposites as a drastically different approach to fabricating large-area nanostructured metamaterials. Using pulsed laser deposition, we fabricated nanocomposite films with vertically aligned goldmore » (Au) nanopillars (~20 nm in diameter) embedded in various oxide matrices with high epitaxial quality. Strong, broad absorption features in the measured absorbance spectrum are clear signatures of plasmon resonances of Au nanopillars. By tuning their densities on selected substrates, anisotropic optical properties are demonstrated via angular dependent and polarization resolved reflectivity measurements and reproduced by full-wave simulations and effective medium theory. Our model predicts exotic properties, such as zero permittivity responses and topological transitions. In conclusion, our studies suggest that these self-assembled metal–oxide nanostructures provide an exciting new material platform to control and enhance optical response at nanometer scales.« less

  10. Synthesis and surface self-assembly of [3]rotaxane-porphyrin conjugates: toward the development of a supramolecular surface tweezer for C60.

    PubMed

    Marois, Jean-Sébastien; Morin, Jean-François

    2008-10-07

    Surface immobilization of pristine C60 by supramolecular interactions is an attractive way to introduce C60 on surfaces since the pi-electron network and the electronic properties of C60 remain intact. Several hosts have been developed for surface complexation of C60. With few exceptions, the hosts reported to date are "electronically inert", limiting the potential applications of pristine C60-based devices. In this study, we present the synthesis and self-assembly of a potential tweezer-like host for C60 having a light-harvesting moiety and an electron-donating unit. More precisely, an azide-containing [3]rotaxane scaffold having ferrocene moieties as blocking group and thioctic acid as anchoring group for a gold surface has been synthesized. This [3]rotaxane has been self-assembled on gold in its protonated (NH2+) (1p) and neutral (NH) (1n) forms and characterized using electrochemistry, XPS, and contact angle measurements. The SAMs were functionalized with free-base and zinc porphyrin using copper-catalyzed 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition in optimized conditions. In combination with C60, this new host is expected to form a triad that could potentially be used as active building block in the preparation of nanostructured electrodes for photoelectrochemical application.

  11. Self-assembled photosystem-I biophotovoltaics on nanostructured TiO2 and ZnO

    PubMed Central

    Mershin, Andreas; Matsumoto, Kazuya; Kaiser, Liselotte; Yu, Daoyong; Vaughn, Michael; Nazeeruddin, Md. K.; Bruce, Barry D.; Graetzel, Michael; Zhang, Shuguang

    2012-01-01

    The abundant pigment-protein membrane complex photosystem-I (PS-I) is at the heart of the Earth’s energy cycle. It is the central molecule in the “Z-scheme” of photosynthesis, converting sunlight into the chemical energy of life. Commandeering this intricately organized photosynthetic nanocircuitry and re-wiring it to produce electricity carries the promise of inexpensive and environmentally friendly solar power. We here report that dry PS-I stabilized by surfactant peptides functioned as both the light-harvester and charge separator in solar cells self-assembled on nanostructured semiconductors. Contrary to previous attempts at biophotovoltaics requiring elaborate surface chemistries, thin film deposition, and illumination concentrated into narrow wavelength ranges the devices described here are straightforward and inexpensive to fabricate and perform well under standard sunlight yielding open circuit photovoltage of 0.5 V, fill factor of 71%, electrical power density of 81 µW/cm2 and photocurrent density of 362 µA/cm2, over four orders of magnitude higher than any photosystem-based biophotovoltaic to date. PMID:22355747

  12. Orthogonal self-assembly in folding block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Hosono, Nobuhiko; Gillissen, Martijn A J; Li, Yuanchao; Sheiko, Sergei S; Palmans, Anja R A; Meijer, E W

    2013-01-09

    We herein report the synthesis and characterization of ABA triblock copolymers that contain two complementary association motifs and fold into single-chain polymeric nanoparticles (SCPNs) via orthogonal self-assembly. The copolymers were prepared using atom-transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) and possess different pendant functional groups in the A and B blocks (alcohols in the A block and acetylenes in the B block). After postfunctionalization, the A block contains o-nitrobenzyl-protected 2-ureidopyrimidinone (UPy) moieties and the B block benzene-1,3,5-tricarboxamide (BTA) moieties. While the protected UPy groups dimerize after photoinduced deprotection of the o-nitrobenzyl group, the BTA moieties self-assemble into helical aggregates when temperature is reduced. In a two-step thermal/photoirradiation treatment under dilute conditions, the ABA block copolymer forms both BTA-based helical aggregates and UPy dimers intramolecularly. The sequential association of the two self-assembling motifs results in single-chain folding of the polymer, affording nanometer-sized particles with a compartmentalized interior. Variable-temperature NMR studies showed that the BTA and UPy self-assembly steps take place orthogonally (i.e., without mutual interference) in dilute solution. In addition, monitoring of the intramolecular self-assembly of BTA moieties into helical aggregates by circular dichroism spectroscopy showed that the stability of the aggregates is almost independent of UPy dimerization. Size-exclusion chromatography (SEC) and small-angle X-ray scattering analysis provided evidence of significant reductions in the hydrodynamic volume and radius of gyration, respectively, after photoinduced deprotection of the UPy groups; a 30-60% reduction in the size of the polymer chains was observed using SEC in CHCl(3). Molecular imaging by atomic force microscopy (AFM) corroborated significant contraction of individual polymer chains due to intramolecular association of the

  13. Toward three-dimensional microelectronic systems: directed self-assembly of silicon microcubes via DNA surface functionalization.

    PubMed

    Lämmerhardt, Nico; Merzsch, Stephan; Ledig, Johannes; Bora, Achyut; Waag, Andreas; Tornow, Marc; Mischnick, Petra

    2013-07-02

    The huge and intelligent processing power of three-dimensional (3D) biological "processors" like the human brain with clock speeds of only 0.1 kHz is an extremely fascinating property, which is based on a massively parallel interconnect strategy. Artificial silicon microprocessors are 7 orders of magnitude faster. Nevertheless, they do not show any indication of intelligent processing power, mostly due to their very limited interconnectivity. Massively parallel interconnectivity can only be realized in three dimensions. Three-dimensional artificial processors would therefore be at the root of fabricating artificially intelligent systems. A first step in this direction would be the self-assembly of silicon based building blocks into 3D structures. We report on the self-assembly of such building blocks by molecular recognition, and on the electrical characterization of the formed assemblies. First, planar silicon substrates were functionalized with self-assembling monolayers of 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane for coupling of oligonucleotides (single stranded DNA) with glutaric aldehyde. The oligonucleotide immobilization was confirmed and quantified by hybridization with fluorescence-labeled complementary oligonucleotides. After the individual processing steps, the samples were analyzed by contact angle measurements, ellipsometry, atomic force microscopy, and fluorescence microscopy. Patterned DNA-functionalized layers were fabricated by microcontact printing (μCP) and photolithography. Silicon microcubes of 3 μm edge length as model objects for first 3D self-assembly experiments were fabricated out of silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers by a combination of reactive ion etching (RIE) and selective wet etching. The microcubes were then surface-functionalized using the same protocol as on planar substrates, and their self-assembly was demonstrated both on patterned silicon surfaces (88% correctly placed cubes), and to cube aggregates by complementary DNA

  14. Stable doping of carbon nanotubes via molecular self assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, B.; Chen, Y.; Podzorov, V.; Cook, A.; Zakhidov, A.

    2014-10-14

    We report a novel method for stable doping of carbon nanotubes (CNT) based on methods of molecular self assembly. A conformal growth of a self-assembled monolayer of fluoroalkyl trichloro-silane (FTS) at CNT surfaces results in a strong increase of the sheet conductivity of CNT electrodes by 60–300%, depending on the CNT chirality and composition. The charge carrier mobility of undoped partially aligned CNT films was independently estimated in a field-effect transistor geometry (~100 cm²V⁻¹s⁻¹). The hole density induced by the FTS monolayer in CNT sheets is estimated to be ~1.8 ×10¹⁴cm⁻². We also show that FTS doping of CNT anodes greatly improves the performance of organic solar cells. This large and stable doping effect, easily achieved in large-area samples, makes this approach very attractive for applications of CNTs in transparent and flexible electronics.

  15. Self-reproduction of nanoparticles through synergistic self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Keisuke; Nakano, Minoru

    2015-01-01

    We describe a self-reproduction mechanism of nanometer-sized particles (i.e., nanodiscs) through chemical ligation of the precursors and self-assembly of the building blocks. The ligation reaction was accelerated on lipid bilayer surfaces, and the products spontaneously assembled into nanodiscs with lipid molecules. With the increase in the number of nanodiscs, a rapid proliferation of the nanodiscs occurred through the spatial rearrangements of the molecules between the pre-existing nanodiscs and the unreacted materials, rather than template- or complex-enhanced ligation of the precursors. The subsequent process of surface-enhanced ligation of integrated precursors matured the nanoparticles into identical copies of the pre-existing assembly. Our study showed that the synergistic self-assembly mechanism probably underlie the self-replication principles for heterogeneous multimolecular systems.

  16. Self-assembled photonic crystals for a chemical sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourdillon, C.; Gam Derouich, S.; Daney de Marcillac, W.; Coolen, L.; Maître, A.; Mangeney, C.; Schwob, C.

    2016-03-01

    As they allow the control of light propagation, photonic crystals find many fields of application. Among them, self-assembled 3D-photonic crystals are ordered at the nanometric scale over centrimetric areas. Furthermore, self-assembly allows the design of complexes structures leading, for example, to the controlled disruption of the crystal periodicity (called defect) and the appearance of permitted optical frequency bands within the photonic bandgap. Light frequencies included in the corresponding passband are then localized in the defect allowing manipulation of nano-emitters fluorescence. We present the fabrication and the optical characterization of a heterostructure composed of a sputtered silica layer sandwiched between two silica opals. We show by photoluminescence measurements than this structure strongly modifies the transmitted fluorescence of nanocrystals.

  17. Self-assembly of double helical nanostructures inside carbon nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Lv, Cheng; Xue, Qingzhong; Shan, Meixia; Jing, Nuannuan; Ling, Cuicui; Zhou, Xiaoyan; Jiao, Zhiyong; Xing, Wei; Yan, Zifeng

    2013-05-21

    We use molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to show that a DNA-like double helix of two poly(acetylene) (PA) chains can form inside single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs). The computational results indicate that SWNTs can activate and guide the self-assembly of polymer chains, allowing them to adopt a helical configuration in a SWNT through the combined action of the van der Waals potential well and the π-π stacking interaction between the polymer and the inner surface of SWNTs. Meanwhile both the SWNT size and polymer chain stiffness determine the outcome of the nanostructure. Furthermore, we also found that water clusters encourage the self-assembly of PA helical structures in the tube. This molecular model may lead to a better understanding of the formation of a double helix biological molecule inside SWNTs. Alternatively, it could form the basis of a novel nanoscale material by utilizing the 'empty' spaces of SWNTs.

  18. Protein-directed self-assembly of a fullerene crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Kook-Han; Ko, Dong-Kyun; Kim, Yong-Tae; Kim, Nam Hyeong; Paul, Jaydeep; Zhang, Shao-Qing; Murray, Christopher B.; Acharya, Rudresh; Degrado, William F.; Kim, Yong Ho; Grigoryan, Gevorg

    2016-04-01

    Learning to engineer self-assembly would enable the precise organization of molecules by design to create matter with tailored properties. Here we demonstrate that proteins can direct the self-assembly of buckminsterfullerene (C60) into ordered superstructures. A previously engineered tetrameric helical bundle binds C60 in solution, rendering it water soluble. Two tetramers associate with one C60, promoting further organization revealed in a 1.67-Å crystal structure. Fullerene groups occupy periodic lattice sites, sandwiched between two Tyr residues from adjacent tetramers. Strikingly, the assembly exhibits high charge conductance, whereas both the protein-alone crystal and amorphous C60 are electrically insulating. The affinity of C60 for its crystal-binding site is estimated to be in the nanomolar range, with lattices of known protein crystals geometrically compatible with incorporating the motif. Taken together, these findings suggest a new means of organizing fullerene molecules into a rich variety of lattices to generate new properties by design.

  19. Protein-directed self-assembly of a fullerene crystal.

    PubMed

    Kim, Kook-Han; Ko, Dong-Kyun; Kim, Yong-Tae; Kim, Nam Hyeong; Paul, Jaydeep; Zhang, Shao-Qing; Murray, Christopher B; Acharya, Rudresh; DeGrado, William F; Kim, Yong Ho; Grigoryan, Gevorg

    2016-04-26

    Learning to engineer self-assembly would enable the precise organization of molecules by design to create matter with tailored properties. Here we demonstrate that proteins can direct the self-assembly of buckminsterfullerene (C60) into ordered superstructures. A previously engineered tetrameric helical bundle binds C60 in solution, rendering it water soluble. Two tetramers associate with one C60, promoting further organization revealed in a 1.67-Å crystal structure. Fullerene groups occupy periodic lattice sites, sandwiched between two Tyr residues from adjacent tetramers. Strikingly, the assembly exhibits high charge conductance, whereas both the protein-alone crystal and amorphous C60 are electrically insulating. The affinity of C60 for its crystal-binding site is estimated to be in the nanomolar range, with lattices of known protein crystals geometrically compatible with incorporating the motif. Taken together, these findings suggest a new means of organizing fullerene molecules into a rich variety of lattices to generate new properties by design.

  20. Biomolecular decision-making process for self assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Osbourn, Gordon Cecil

    2005-01-01

    The brain is often identified with decision-making processes in the biological world. In fact, single cells, single macromolecules (proteins) and populations of molecules also make simple decisions. These decision processes are essential to survival and to the biological self-assembly and self-repair processes that we seek to emulate. How do these tiny systems make effective decisions? How do they make decisions in concert with a cooperative network of other molecules or cells? How can we emulate the decision-making behaviors of small-scale biological systems to program and self-assemble microsystems? This LDRD supported research to answer these questions. Our work included modeling and simulation of protein populations to help us understand, mimic, and categorize molecular decision-making mechanisms that nonequilibrium systems can exhibit. This work is an early step towards mimicking such nanoscale and microscale biomolecular decision-making processes in inorganic systems.

  1. Self Assembled Structures by Directional Solidification of Eutectics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dynys, Frederick W.; Sayir, Ali

    2004-01-01

    Interest in ordered porous structures has grown because of there unique properties such as photonic bandgaps, high backing packing density and high surface to volume ratio. Inspired by nature, biometric strategies using self assembled organic molecules dominate the development of hierarchical inorganic structures. Directional solidification of eutectics (DSE) also exhibit self assembly characteristics to form hierarchical metallic and inorganic structures. Crystallization of diphasic materials by DSE can produce two dimensional ordered structures consisting of rods or lamella. By selective removal of phases, DSE is capable to fabricate ordered pore arrays or ordered pin arrays. Criteria and limitations to fabricate hierarchical structures will be presented. Porous structures in silicon base alloys and ceramic systems will be reported.

  2. Self-assembly of hyperbranched polymers and its biomedical applications.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yongfeng; Huang, Wei; Liu, Jinyao; Zhu, Xinyuan; Yan, Deyue

    2010-11-02

    Hyperbranched polymers (HBPs) are highly branched macromolecules with a three-dimensional dendritic architecture. Due to their unique topological structure and interesting physical/chemical properties, HBPs have attracted wide attention from both academia and industry. In this paper, the recent developments in HBP self-assembly and their biomedical applications have been comprehensively reviewed. Many delicate supramolecular structures from zero-dimension (0D) to three-dimension (3D), such as micelles, fibers, tubes, vesicles, membranes, large compound vesicles and physical gels, have been prepared through the solution or interfacial self-assembly of amphiphilic HBPs. In addition, these supramolecular structures have shown promising applications in the biomedical areas including drug delivery, protein purification/detection/delivery, gene transfection, antibacterial/antifouling materials and cytomimetic chemistry. Such developments promote the interdiscipline researches among surpramolecular chemistry, biomedical chemistry, nano-technology and functional materials.

  3. Self-assembled Chiral Nanostructure as Scaffold for Asymmetric Reaction.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Jian; Ouyang, Guanghui; Zhang, Li; Liu, Minghua

    2017-03-25

    Asymmetric reaction is one of the most important reactions in organic synthesis. While large amount of efficient molecular catalysts have been developed and applied, supramolecular and nanostructured catalysts have been attracting recent interest. In this mini review, we focused on the self-assembled chiral nanostructures and reviewed their possibility and feasibility as the enantioselective catalyst. The design concept and the requirement of the chiral scaffold as the catalysts are discussed. Based on the chirality and catalytic performance of the building molecules and the supramolecular nanostructures, the nanocatalyst is divided into chiral nanostructure driven (CND) and chiral nanostructure enhanced (CNE) enantioselective catalysts. Then, several typical self-assembled chiral nanostructures such as nanocage, nanotube, nanorod, micelles and vesicles are selected as the chiral scaffold and their catalytic behaviors for the asymmetric reactions were demonstrated. Finally, the future development of the field is also outlooked.

  4. Self-assembling enzymes and the origins of the cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Barry, Rachael; Gitai, Zemer

    2011-01-01

    The bacterial cytoskeleton is composed of a complex and diverse group of proteins that self-assemble into linear filaments. These filaments support and organize cellular architecture and provide a dynamic network controlling transport and localization within the cell. Here, we review recent discoveries related to a newly appreciated class of self-assembling proteins that expand our view of the bacterial cytoskeleton and provide potential explanations for its evolutionary origins. Specifically, several types of metabolic enzymes can form structures similar to established cytoskeletal filaments and, in some cases, these structures have been repurposed for structural uses independent of their normal role. The behaviors of these enzymes suggest that some modern cytoskeletal proteins may have evolved from dual-role proteins with catalytic and structural functions. PMID:22014508

  5. DNA-Based Self-Assembly of Fluorescent Nanodiamonds.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Tao; Neumann, Andre; Lindlau, Jessica; Wu, Yuzhou; Pramanik, Goutam; Naydenov, Boris; Jelezko, Fedor; Schüder, Florian; Huber, Sebastian; Huber, Marinus; Stehr, Florian; Högele, Alexander; Weil, Tanja; Liedl, Tim

    2015-08-12

    As a step toward deterministic and scalable assembly of ordered spin arrays we here demonstrate a bottom-up approach to position fluorescent nanodiamonds (NDs) with nanometer precision on DNA origami structures. We have realized a reliable and broadly applicable surface modification strategy that results in DNA-functionalized and perfectly dispersed NDs that were then self-assembled in predefined geometries. With optical studies we show that the fluorescence properties of the nitrogen-vacancy color centers in NDs are preserved during surface modification and DNA assembly. As this method allows the nanoscale arrangement of fluorescent NDs together with other optically active components in complex geometries, applications based on self-assembled spin lattices or plasmon-enhanced spin sensors as well as improved fluorescent labeling for bioimaging could be envisioned.

  6. Self-assembly of nanomaterials at fluid interfaces.

    PubMed

    Toor, Anju; Feng, Tao; Russell, Thomas P

    2016-05-01

    Recent developments in the field of the self-assembly of nanoscale materials such as nanoparticles, nanorods and nanosheets at liquid/liquid interfaces are reviewed. Self-assembly behavior of both biological and synthetic particles is discussed. For biological nanoparticles, the nanoparticle assembly at fluid interfaces provides a simple route for directing nanoparticles into 2D or 3D constructs with hierarchical ordering. The interfacial assembly of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) at liquid interfaces would play a key role in applications such as nanotube fractionation, flexible electronic thin-film fabrication and synthesis of porous SWCNT/polymer composites foams. Liquids can be structured by the jamming of nanoparticle surfactants at fluid interfaces. By controlling the interfacial packing of nanoparticle surfactants using external triggers, a new class of materials can be generated that combines the desirable characteristics of fluids such as rapid transport of energy carriers with the structural stability of a solid.

  7. DNA Self-assembly and Computer System Fabrication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwyer, Chris

    2006-11-01

    The migration of circuit fabrication technology from the microscale to the nanoscale has generated a great deal of interest in how the fundamental physical limitations of materials will change the way computer systems are engineered. The changing relationships between performance, defects, and cost have motivated research into so-called disruptive or exotic technologies and draws inspiration from systems found in biology. Advances in DNA self-assembly have demonstrated versatile and programmable methods for the synthesis of complex nanostructures suitable for logic circuitry. Several recent advances in programmable DNA self-assembly and the theory and design of DNA nanostructures for computing will be presented. The advantages of this technology go beyond the simple scaling of device feature sizes (sub-20nm) to enable new modes of computation that are otherwise impractical with conventional technologies. A brief survey of several computer architectures that take advantage of this new technology will also be presented.

  8. Chemical optimization of self-assembled carbon nanotube transistors.

    PubMed

    Auvray, Stéphane; Derycke, Vincent; Goffman, Marcelo; Filoramo, Arianna; Jost, Oliver; Bourgoin, Jean-Philippe

    2005-03-01

    We present the improvement of carbon nanotube field effects transistors (CNTFETs) performances by chemical tuning of the nanotube/substrate and nanotube/electrode interfaces. Our work is based on a method of selective placement of individual single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) by patterned aminosilane monolayer and its use for the fabrication of self-assembled nanotube transistors. This method brings a relevant solution to the problem of systematic connection of self-organized nanotubes. The aminosilane monolayer reactivity can be used to improve carrier injection and doping level of the SWNT. We show that the Schottky barrier height at the nanotube/metal interface can be diminished in a continuous fashion down to an almost ohmic contact through these chemical treatments. Moreover, sensitivity to 20 ppb of triethylamine is demonstrated for self-assembled CNTFETs, thus opening new prospects for gas sensors taking advantages of the chemical functionality of the aminosilane used for assembling the CNTFETs.

  9. Electrostatically Directed Self-Assembly of Ultrathin Supramolecular Polymer Microcapsules

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Richard M; Zhang, Jing; Zheng, Yu; Coulston, Roger J; Smith, Clive A; Salmon, Andrew R; Yu, Ziyi; Scherman, Oren A; Abell, Chris

    2015-01-01

    Supramolecular self-assembly offers routes to challenging architectures on the molecular and macroscopic scale. Coupled with microfluidics it has been used to make microcapsules—where a 2D sheet is shaped in 3D, encapsulating the volume within. In this paper, a versatile methodology to direct the accumulation of capsule-forming components to the droplet interface using electrostatic interactions is described. In this approach, charged copolymers are selectively partitioned to the microdroplet interface by a complementary charged surfactant for subsequent supramolecular cross-linking via cucurbit[8]uril. This dynamic assembly process is employed to selectively form both hollow, ultrathin microcapsules and solid microparticles from a single solution. The ability to dictate the distribution of a mixture of charged copolymers within the microdroplet, as demonstrated by the single-step fabrication of distinct core–shell microcapsules, gives access to a new generation of innovative self-assembled constructs. PMID:26213532

  10. Ultrathin efficient perovskite solar cells employing a periodic structure of a composite hole conductor for elevated plasmonic light harvesting and hole collection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Long, Mingzhu; Chen, Zefeng; Zhang, Tiankai; Xiao, Yubin; Zeng, Xiaoliang; Chen, Jian; Yan, Keyou; Xu, Jianbin

    2016-03-01

    We developed a molecule/polymer composite hole transporting material (HTM) with a periodic microstructure for morphology replication of a corrugated Au electrode, which in combination plays a dual role in the optical and electronic enhancement of high performance perovskite solar cells (PSCs). The electro-optics revealed that perovskite couldn't readily extinct the red light even though the thickness increased to 370 nm, but we found that the quasi periodic microstructure composite (PMC) HTM in combination with the conformal Au electrode could promote the absorption through the enhanced cavity effects, leading to comparable absorption even using much thinner perovskite (240 nm). We identified that the cavity was the combination of Fabry-Pérot interferometer and surface plasmonic resonance, with light harvesting enhancement through surface plasmon polariton or waveguide modes that propagate in the plane of the perovskite layer. On the other hand, the PMC HTM increased hole conductivity by one order of magnitude with respect to standard spiro-OMeTAD HTM due to molecular packing and self-assembly, embodying traceable hole mobility and density elevation up to 3 times, and thus the hysteresis was greatly avoided. Owing to dual optical and electronic enhancement, the PMC PSC afforded high efficiency PSC using as thin as 240 nm perovskite layer, delivering a Voc of 1.05 V, Jsc of 22.9 mA cm-2, FF of 0.736, and efficiency amounting to 17.7% PCE, the highest efficiency with ultrathin perovskite layer.We developed a molecule/polymer composite hole transporting material (HTM) with a periodic microstructure for morphology replication of a corrugated Au electrode, which in combination plays a dual role in the optical and electronic enhancement of high performance perovskite solar cells (PSCs). The electro-optics revealed that perovskite couldn't readily extinct the red light even though the thickness increased to 370 nm, but we found that the quasi periodic microstructure

  11. Self-assembled containers based on extended tetrathiafulvalene.

    PubMed

    Bivaud, Sébastien; Goeb, Sébastien; Croué, Vincent; Dron, Paul I; Allain, Magali; Sallé, Marc

    2013-07-10

    Two original self-assembled containers constituted each by six electroactive subunits are described. They are synthesized from a concave tetratopic π-extended tetrathiafulvalene ligand bearing four pyridyl units and cis-M(dppf)(OTf)2 (M = Pd or Pt; dppf = 1,1'-bis(diphenylphosphino)ferrocene; OTf = trifluoromethane-sulfonate) complexes. Both fully characterized assemblies present an oblate spheroidal cavity that can incorporate one perylene molecule.

  12. Propagating waves of self-assembly in organosilane monolayers

    PubMed Central

    Douglas, Jack F.; Efimenko, Kirill; Fischer, Daniel A.; Phelan, Fredrick R.; Genzer, Jan

    2007-01-01

    Wavefronts associated with reaction–diffusion and self-assembly processes are ubiquitous in the natural world. For example, propagating fronts arise in crystallization and diverse other thermodynamic ordering processes, in polymerization fronts involved in cell movement and division, as well as in the competitive social interactions and population dynamics of animals at much larger scales. Although it is often claimed that self-sustaining or autocatalytic front propagation is well described by mean-field “reaction–diffusion” or “phase field” ordering models, it has recently become appreciated from simulations and theoretical arguments that fluctuation effects in lower spatial dimensions can lead to appreciable deviations from the classical mean-field theory (MFT) of this type of front propagation. The present work explores these fluctuation effects in a real physical system. In particular, we consider a high-resolution near-edge x-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy (NEXAFS) study of the spontaneous frontal self-assembly of organosilane (OS) molecules into self-assembled monolayer (SAM) surface-energy gradients on oxidized silicon wafers. We find that these layers organize from the wafer edge as propagating wavefronts having well defined velocities. In accordance with two-dimensional simulations of this type of front propagation that take fluctuation effects into account, we find that the interfacial widths w(t) of these SAM self-assembly fronts exhibit a power-law broadening in time, w(t) ≈ tβ, rather than the constant width predicted by MFT. Moreover, the observed exponent values accord rather well with previous simulation and theoretical estimates. These observations have significant implications for diverse types of ordering fronts that occur under confinement conditions in biological or materials-processing contexts. PMID:17566108

  13. Molecular Recognition Directed Self-Assembly of Supramolecular Polymers

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1994-06-30

    SUPRAMOLECULAR POLYMERS by V. Percec, J. Heck, G. Johansson, D. Tomazos, M. Kawasumi and G. Ungar Published in the J. Macromol. SOi: Part A: Pure...W.asetaqIom OC JOS0l 4 TITE AN SUBITLES. FUNDING NUMBERS Molecular Recognition Directed Self-Assembly of Suprainolecular Polymers N00014-89--J-1828 6. AUTHOR(S...comparison between various supramolecular (generated via H-bonding, iions) and molecular " polymer backbones" will be made. The present limitations

  14. Lighting up cells with lanthanide self-assembled helicates

    PubMed Central

    Bünzli, Jean-Claude G.

    2013-01-01

    Lanthanide bioprobes and bioconjugates are ideal luminescent stains in view of their low propensity to photobleaching, sharp emission lines and long excited state lifetimes permitting time-resolved detection for enhanced sensitivity. We show here how the interplay between physical, chemical and biochemical properties allied to microfluidics engineering leads to self-assembled dinuclear lanthanide luminescent probes illuminating live cells and selectively detecting biomarkers expressed by cancerous human breast cells. PMID:24511387

  15. A self-assembled cyclodextrin nanocarrier for photoreactive squaraine

    PubMed Central

    Kauscher, Ulrike

    2016-01-01

    Photoreactive squaraines produce cytotoxic oxygen species under irradiation and have significant potential for photodynamic therapy. Herein we report that squaraines can be immobilized on a self-assembled nanocarrier composed of amphiphilic cyclodextrins to enhance their photochemical activity. To this end, a squaraine was equipped with two adamantane moieties that act as anchors for the cyclodextrin vesicle surface. The supramolecular immobilization was monitored by using fluorescence spectroscopy and microscopy and the photochemistry of the squaraine was investigated by using absorption spectroscopy. PMID:28144322

  16. Hyperthermal Carbon Dioxide Interactions with Self-Assembled Monolayer Surfaces

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-09-08

    time as well as density measurements of the thermosphere. The sensor under current development is based on the charge conversion of hyperthermal...oxygen atoms (O) to their anionic form (O−) upon collision with an organosilane/silicon self-assembled monolayer (SAM). The measured current of O− can...efficiency at charge conversion. The original goals of this project were to (1) measure the lifetimes of AFRL-provided SAMs under hyperthermal O

  17. Colloids with magnetic patches: synthesis and self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sacanna, Stefano; Rossi, Laura; Irvine, William; Pine, David

    2011-03-01

    We developed a new class of colloidal particles that programmably and reversibly self-assemble into well-defined clusters by virtue of ``magnetic patches'' carrying a permanent magnetic dipole moment. The resulting clusters form spontaneously in a zero external field, and their geometry is entirely determined by the interplay between magnetic, steric, and electrostatic interactions. Imposing an external magnetic field enables the clusters to unbind or change their geometry allowing, in principle, to create materials with tunable structural arrangements.

  18. Sequential programmable self-assembly: Role of cooperative interactions

    DOE PAGES

    Jonathan D. Halverson; Tkachenko, Alexei V.

    2016-03-04

    Here, we propose a general strategy of “sequential programmable self-assembly” that enables a bottom-up design of arbitrary multi-particle architectures on nano- and microscales. We show that a naive realization of this scheme, based on the pairwise additive interactions between particles, has fundamental limitations that lead to a relatively high error rate. This can be overcome by using cooperative interparticle binding. The cooperativity is a well known feature of many biochemical processes, responsible, e.g., for signaling and regulations in living systems. Here we propose to utilize a similar strategy for high precision self-assembly, and show that DNA-mediated interactions provide a convenientmore » platform for its implementation. In particular, we outline a specific design of a DNA-based complex which we call “DNA spider,” that acts as a smart interparticle linker and provides a built-in cooperativity of binding. We demonstrate versatility of the sequential self-assembly based on spider-functionalized particles by designing several mesostructures of increasing complexity and simulating their assembly process. This includes a number of finite and repeating structures, in particular, the so-called tetrahelix and its several derivatives. Due to its generality, this approach allows one to design and successfully self-assemble virtually any structure made of a “GEOMAG” magnetic construction toy, out of nanoparticles. According to our results, once the binding cooperativity is strong enough, the sequential self-assembly becomes essentially error-free.« less

  19. Coherence dynamics in light-harvesting complexes with two-colour spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, Gethin H.; Curmi, Paul M. G.; Wilk, Krystyna E.; Quiney, Harry M.; Davis, Jeffrey A.

    2013-03-01

    We investigate coherent dynamics in the cryptophyte light-harvesting complex Phycocyanin-645 (PC-645). A two-colour four-wave mixing experiment allows us to isolate a coherence pathway and observe its evolution in the absence of other signals. We measured a decoherence time of 540fs for the coherence [1]. Additionally oscillations in the signal pathway give evidence for the coherent excitation of states outside the bandwidth of the laser pulse. This suggests strong coupling between the excited states and phonon modes [1].

  20. Toward understanding as photosynthetic biosignatures: light harvesting and energy transfer calculation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komatsu, Y.; Umemura, M.; Shoji, M.; Shiraishi, K.; Kayanuma, M.; Yabana, K.

    2014-03-01

    Among several proposed biosignatures, red edge is a direct evidence of photosynthetic life if it is detected (Kiang et al 2007). Red edge is a sharp change in reflectance spectra of vegetation in NIR region (about 700-750 nm). The sign of red edge is observed by Earthshine or remote sensing (Wolstencroft & Raven 2002, Woolf et al 2002). But, why around 700-750 nm? The photosynthetic organisms on Earth have evolved to optimize the sunlight condition. However, if we consider about photosynthetic organism on extrasolar planets, they should have developed to utilize the spectra of its principal star. Thus, it is not strange even if it shows different vegetation spectra. In this study, we focused on the light absorption mechanism of photosynthetic organisms on Earth and investigated the fundamental properties of the light harvesting mechanisms, which is the first stage for the light absorption. Light harvesting complexes contain photosynthetic pigments like chlorophylls. Effective light absorption and the energy transfer are accomplished by the electronic excitations of collective photosynthetic pigments. In order to investigate this mechanism, we constructed an energy transfer model by using a dipole-dipole approximation for the interactions between electronic excitations. Transition moments and transition energies of each pigment are calculated at the time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT) level (Marques & Gross 2004). Quantum dynamics simulation for the excitation energy transfer was calculated by the Liouvelle's equation. We adopted the model to purple bacteria, which has been studied experimentally and known to absorb lower energy. It is meaningful to focus on the mechanism of this bacteria, since in the future mission, M planets will become a important target. We calculated the oscillator strengths in one light harvesting complex and confirmed the validity by comparing to the experimental data. This complex is made of an inner and an outer ring. The

  1. Ab initio calculation of excitonic Hamiltonian of light-harvesting complex LH1 of Thermochromatium tepidum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozlov, Maxim I.; Poddubnyy, Vladimir V.; Glebov, Ilya O.; Belov, Aleksandr S.; Khokhlov, Daniil V.

    2016-02-01

    The electronic properties of light-harvesting complexes determine the efficiency of energy transfer in photosynthetic antennae. Ab initio calculations of the electronic properties of bacteriochlorophylls (composing the LH1 complex of the purple bacteria Thermochromatium tepidum) were performed. Based on these calculations, the excitonic Hamiltonian of a native cyclic complex and the Hamiltonians of open complexes with several removed bacteriochlorophylls were constructed. Absorption spectra calculated based on these Hamiltonians agree well with the experimental data. We found that the parameters of interaction between the neighboring bacteriochlorophylls are significantly larger than the empirical parameters suggested previously.

  2. Up-converted fluorescence from photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes linearly dependent on excitation intensity.

    PubMed

    Leiger, Kristjan; Freiberg, Arvi

    2016-01-01

    Weak up-converted fluorescence related to bacteriochlorophyll a was recorded from various detergent-isolated and membrane-embedded light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes as well as from the functional membranes of photosynthetic purple bacteria under continuous-wave infrared laser excitation at 1064 nm, far outside the optically allowed singlet absorption bands of the chromophore. The fluorescence increases linearly with the excitation power, distinguishing it from the previously observed two-photon excited fluorescence upon femtosecond pulse excitation. Possible mechanisms of this excitation are discussed.

  3. Fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 from purple bacteria coupled to spherical gold nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Bujak, Ł.; Czechowski, N.; Piatkowski, D.; Litvin, R.; Mackowski, S.; Brotosudarmo, T. H. P.; Pichler, S.; Cogdell, R. J.; Heiss, W.

    2011-10-24

    The influence of plasmon excitations in spherical gold nanoparticles on the optical properties of a light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) from the purple bacteria Rhodopseudomonas palustris has been studied. Systematic analysis is facilitated by controlling the thickness of a silica layer between Au nanoparticles and LH2 complexes. Fluorescence of LH2 complexes features substantial increase when these complexes are separated by 12 nm from the gold nanoparticles. At shorter distances, non-radiative quenching leads to a decrease of fluorescence emission. The enhancement of fluorescence originates predominantly from an increase of absorption of pigments comprising the LH2 complex.

  4. Sideways scattering in double resonant plasmonic nanostructures for light harvesting applications.

    PubMed

    Achermann, Marc

    2016-12-26

    Numerical simulations of light scattering by elongated metal nanoparticles in an asymmetric arrangement show resonant scattering in two near-infrared wavelength ranges associated with different surface plasmon modes. The main scattering directions of the two plasmon modes are in opposite diagonal directions and almost perpendicular to each other. At wavelengths in-between the two plasmon resonances our simulations showed for the first time strong scattering at approximately ± 90°, which is parallel to the incident electric field direction. Since enhanced sideways scattering exists over a significant wavelength range, the proposed nanoparticle assemblies could be beneficial for light harvesting applications such as solar windows.

  5. Equilibrium self-assembly of small RNA viruses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruinsma, R. F.; Comas-Garcia, M.; Garmann, R. F.; Grosberg, A. Y.

    2016-03-01

    We propose a description for the quasiequilibrium self-assembly of small, single-stranded (ss) RNA viruses whose capsid proteins (CPs) have flexible, positively charged, disordered tails that associate with the negatively charged RNA genome molecules. We describe the assembly of such viruses as the interplay between two coupled phase-transition-like events: the formation of the protein shell (the capsid) by CPs and the condensation of a large ss viral RNA molecule. Electrostatic repulsion between the CPs competes with attractive hydrophobic interactions and attractive interaction between neutralized RNA segments mediated by the tail groups. An assembly diagram is derived in terms of the strength of attractive interactions between CPs and between CPs and the RNA molecules. It is compared with the results of recent studies of viral assembly. We demonstrate that the conventional theory of self-assembly, which does describe the assembly of empty capsids, is in general not applicable to the self-assembly of RNA-encapsidating virions.

  6. Evolutionary dynamics in a simple model of self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnston, Iain G.; Ahnert, Sebastian E.; Doye, Jonathan P. K.; Louis, Ard A.

    2011-06-01

    We investigate the evolutionary dynamics of an idealized model for the robust self-assembly of two-dimensional structures called polyominoes. The model includes rules that encode interactions between sets of square tiles that drive the self-assembly process. The relationship between the model’s rule set and its resulting self-assembled structure can be viewed as a genotype-phenotype map and incorporated into a genetic algorithm. The rule sets evolve under selection for specified target structures. The corresponding complex fitness landscape generates rich evolutionary dynamics as a function of parameters such as the population size, search space size, mutation rate, and method of recombination. Furthermore, these systems are simple enough that in some cases the associated model genome space can be completely characterized, shedding light on how the evolutionary dynamics depends on the detailed structure of the fitness landscape. Finally, we apply the model to study the emergence of the preference for dihedral over cyclic symmetry observed for homomeric protein tetramers.

  7. Epitaxial photostriction-magnetostriction coupled self-assembled nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Liu, Heng-Jui; Chen, Long-Yi; He, Qing; Liang, Chen-Wei; Chen, Yu-Ze; Chien, Yung-Shun; Hsieh, Ying-Hui; Lin, Su-Jien; Arenholz, Elke; Luo, Chih-Wei; Chueh, Yu-Lun; Chen, Yi-Chun; Chu, Ying-Hao

    2012-08-28

    Self-assembled vertical nanostructures take advantage of high interface-to-volume ratio and can be used to design new functionalities by the choice of a proper combination of constituents. However, most of the studies to date have emphasized the functional controllability of the nanostructures using external electric or magnetic fields. In this study, to introduce light (or photons) as an external control parameter in a self-assembled nanostructure system, we have successfully synthesized oxide nanostructures with CoFe(2)O(4) nanopillars embedded in a SrRuO(3) matrix. The combination of photostrictive SrRuO(3) and magnetostrictive CoFe(2)O(4) in the intimately assembled nanostructures leads to a light-induced, ultrafast change in magnetization of the CoFe(2)O(4) nanopillars. Our work demonstrates a novel concept on oxide nanostructure design and opens an alternative pathway for the explorations of diverse functionalities in heteroepitaxial self-assembled oxide nanostructures.

  8. Self-assembly in sugar-oil complex glasses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dave, Hiteshkumar; Gao, Feng; Lee, Jing-Huei; Liberatore, Matthew; Ho, Chia-Chi; Co, Carlos C.

    2007-04-01

    In aqueous systems, the hydrophobic effect drives the self-assembly of amphiphiles into a broad range of micellar, rod-like, bicontinuous and liquid-crystalline complex fluids. Many of these are relevant to biological matter or technological applications. However, amphiphilic self-assembly is not limited to aqueous systems. Replacement of water with supercritical carbon dioxide, for example, results in complex fluids that combine the properties of gases and liquids. Along this vein, we explore the self-assembly of surfactants in anhydrous sugars. Our study reveals that anhydrous powders of sugars and surfactants suspended in oil spontaneously form molten glasses with nanometre-size domains of sugar and liquid oil without mixing. The low cost, water solubility, low toxicity and stabilizing properties of glassy sugars make them ideal water replacements for many pharmaceutical, food and materials synthesis applications. The optical clarity and solid appearance of these glasses at room temperature belie their inclusion of more than 50% (vol.) oil, which confers liquid-like diffusivity. The unique combination of solid- and liquid-like properties may lead to applications in sensors and optical devices.

  9. Self-assembly in sugar-oil complex glasses.

    PubMed

    Dave, Hiteshkumar; Gao, Feng; Lee, Jing-Huei; Liberatore, Matthew; Ho, Chia-Chi; Co, Carlos C

    2007-04-01

    In aqueous systems, the hydrophobic effect drives the self-assembly of amphiphiles into a broad range of micellar, rod-like, bicontinuous and liquid-crystalline complex fluids. Many of these are relevant to biological matter or technological applications. However, amphiphilic self-assembly is not limited to aqueous systems. Replacement of water with supercritical carbon dioxide, for example, results in complex fluids that combine the properties of gases and liquids. Along this vein, we explore the self-assembly of surfactants in anhydrous sugars. Our study reveals that anhydrous powders of sugars and surfactants suspended in oil spontaneously form molten glasses with nanometre-size domains of sugar and liquid oil without mixing. The low cost, water solubility, low toxicity and stabilizing properties of glassy sugars make them ideal water replacements for many pharmaceutical, food and materials synthesis applications. The optical clarity and solid appearance of these glasses at room temperature belie their inclusion of more than 50% (vol.) oil, which confers liquid-like diffusivity. The unique combination of solid- and liquid-like properties may lead to applications in sensors and optical devices.

  10. Molecular pathways for defect annihilation in directed self-assembly.

    DOE PAGES

    Hur, Su-Mi; Thapar, Vikram; Ramirez-Hernandez, Abelardo; ...

    2015-11-17

    Over the last few years, the directed self-assembly of block copolymers by surface patterns has transitioned from academic curiosity to viable contender for commercial fabrication of next-generation nanocircuits by lithography. Recently, it has become apparent that kinetics, and not only thermodynamics, plays a key role for the ability of a polymeric material to self-assemble into a perfect, defect-free ordered state. Perfection, in this context, implies not more than one defect, with characteristic dimensions on the order of 5 nm, over a sample area as large as 100 cm2. In this work, we identify the key pathways and the corresponding free-energymore » barriers for eliminating defects, and we demonstrate that an extraordinarily large thermodynamic driving force is not necessarily sufficient for their removal. By adopting a concerted computational and experimental approach, we explain the molecular origins of these barriers, how they depend on material characteristics, and we propose strategies designed to over-come them. The validity of our conclusions for industrially-relevant patterning processes is established by relying on instruments and assembly lines that are only available at state-of-the-art fabrication facilities and, through this confluence of fundamental and applied research, we are able to discern the evolution of morphology at the smallest relevant length scales - a handful of nanometers -, and present a view of defect annihilation in directed self-assembly at an unprecedented level of detail.« less

  11. Molecular pathways for defect annihilation in directed self-assembly.

    SciTech Connect

    Hur, Su-Mi; Thapar, Vikram; Ramirez-Hernandez, Abelardo; Khaira, Gurdaman S.; Segal-Peretz, Tamar; Rincon-Delgadillo, Paulina A.; Li, Weihua; Muller, Marcus; Nealey, Paul F.; de Pablo, Juan J.

    2015-11-17

    Over the last few years, the directed self-assembly of block copolymers by surface patterns has transitioned from academic curiosity to viable contender for commercial fabrication of next-generation nanocircuits by lithography. Recently, it has become apparent that kinetics, and not only thermodynamics, plays a key role for the ability of a polymeric material to self-assemble into a perfect, defect-free ordered state. Perfection, in this context, implies not more than one defect, with characteristic dimensions on the order of 5 nm, over a sample area as large as 100 cm2. In this work, we identify the key pathways and the corresponding free-energy barriers for eliminating defects, and we demonstrate that an extraordinarily large thermodynamic driving force is not necessarily sufficient for their removal. By adopting a concerted computational and experimental approach, we explain the molecular origins of these barriers, how they depend on material characteristics, and we propose strategies designed to over-come them. The validity of our conclusions for industrially-relevant patterning processes is established by relying on instruments and assembly lines that are only available at state-of-the-art fabrication facilities and, through this confluence of fundamental and applied research, we are able to discern the evolution of morphology at the smallest relevant length scales - a handful of nanometers -, and present a view of defect annihilation in directed self-assembly at an unprecedented level of detail.

  12. Capillary-based static self-assembly in higher organisms

    PubMed Central

    Voise, Jonathan; Schindler, Michael; Casas, Jérôme; Raphaël, Elie

    2011-01-01

    Organized structures produced by dynamic self-assembly are often observed in animal groups. Static self-assembly, however, has to date only been observed at the cellular and sub-cellular levels. The aim of this study was to analyse organized structures in immobile whirligig beetle groups on the water surface. We used theoretical and computational approaches to model the meniscus around whirligig beetles and to calculate the surface energy for configurations involving two beetles. Theoretical predictions were then tested using live insects and resin casts. Observations were also made for three and more casts. The meniscus of whirligig beetles had a bipolar shape with two concave parts. For two beetles, predicted configurations based on energy minima corresponded to beetles in contact by their extremities, forming lines and arrows, and agreed well with observations. Experimental results for three and more beetle casts revealed new geometrical arrangements similar to those obtained with colloids at interfaces. This study provides the first example of static self-assembly at the inter-organism level and shows the importance of capillary interactions in such formations. We identify the ecological context in which our findings are of relevance. PMID:21367777

  13. Model-driven optimization of multicomponent self-assembly processes.

    PubMed

    Korevaar, Peter A; Grenier, Christophe; Markvoort, Albert J; Schenning, Albertus P H J; de Greef, Tom F A; Meijer, E W

    2013-10-22

    Here, we report an engineering approach toward multicomponent self-assembly processes by developing a methodology to circumvent spurious, metastable assemblies. The formation of metastable aggregates often hampers self-assembly of molecular building blocks into the desired nanostructures. Strategies are explored to master the pathway complexity and avoid off-pathway aggregates by optimizing the rate of assembly along the correct pathway. We study as a model system the coassembly of two monomers, the R- and S-chiral enantiomers of a π-conjugated oligo(p-phenylene vinylene) derivative. Coassembly kinetics are analyzed by developing a kinetic model, which reveals the initial assembly of metastable structures buffering free monomers and thereby slows the formation of thermodynamically stable assemblies. These metastable assemblies exert greater influence on the thermodynamically favored self-assembly pathway if the ratio between both monomers approaches 1:1, in agreement with experimental results. Moreover, competition by metastable assemblies is highly temperature dependent and hampers the assembly of equilibrium nanostructures most effectively at intermediate temperatures. We demonstrate that the rate of the assembly process may be optimized by tuning the cooling rate. Finally, it is shown by simulation that increasing the driving force for assembly stepwise by changing the solvent composition may circumvent metastable pathways and thereby force the assembly process directly into the correct pathway.

  14. Simulation Methods for Self-Assembled Polymers and Rings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kindt, James T.

    2003-11-01

    New off-lattice grand canonical Monte Carlo simulation methods have been developed and used to model the equilibrium structure and phase diagrams of equilibrium polymers and rings. A scheme called Polydisperse Insertion, Removal, and Resizing (PDIRR) is used to accelerate the equilibration of the size distribution of self-assembled aggregates. This method allows the insertion or removal of aggregates (e.g., chains) containing an arbitrary number of monomers in a single Monte Carlo move, or the re-sizing of an existing aggregate. For the equilibrium polymer model under semi-dilute conditions, a several-fold increase in equilibration rate compared with single-monomer moves is observed, facilitating the study of the isotropic-nematic transition of semiflexible, self-assembled chains. Combined with the pivot-coupled GCMC method for ring simulation, the PDIRR approach also allows the phenomenological simulation of a polydisperse equilibrium phase of rings, 2-dimensional fluid domains, or flat self-assembled disks in three dimensions.

  15. Molecular Motions in Functional Self-Assembled Nanostructures

    PubMed Central

    Dhotel, Alexandre; Chen, Ziguang; Delbreilh, Laurent; Youssef, Boulos; Saiter, Jean-Marc; Tan, Li

    2013-01-01

    The construction of “smart” materials able to perform specific functions at the molecular scale through the application of various stimuli is highly attractive but still challenging. The most recent applications indicate that the outstanding flexibility of self-assembled architectures can be employed as a powerful tool for the development of innovative molecular devices, functional surfaces and smart nanomaterials. Structural flexibility of these materials is known to be conferred by weak intermolecular forces involved in self-assembly strategies. However, some fundamental mechanisms responsible for conformational lability remain unexplored. Furthermore, the role played by stronger bonds, such as coordination, ionic and covalent bonding, is sometimes neglected while they can be employed readily to produce mechanically robust but also chemically reversible structures. In this review, recent applications of structural flexibility and molecular motions in self-assembled nanostructures are discussed. Special focus is given to advanced materials exhibiting significant performance changes after an external stimulus is applied, such as light exposure, pH variation, heat treatment or electromagnetic field. The crucial role played by strong intra- and weak intermolecular interactions on structural lability and responsiveness is highlighted. PMID:23348927

  16. Three dimensional self-assembly at the nanoscale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gracias, D. H.

    2013-05-01

    At the nanoscale, three dimensional manipulation and assembly becomes extremely challenging and also cost prohibitive. Self-assembly provides an attractive and possibly the only highly parallel methodology to structure truly three dimensional patterned materials and devices at this size scale for applications in electronics, optics, robotics and medicine. This is a concise review along with a perspective of an important and exciting field in nanotechnology and is related to a Nanoengineering Pioneer Award that I received at this SPIE symposium for my contributions to the 3D selfassembly of nanostructures. I detail a historical account of 3D self-assembly and outline important developments in this area which is put into context with the larger research areas of 3D nanofabrication, assembly and nanomanufacturing. A focus in this review is on our work as it relates to the self-assembly with lithographically patterned units; this approach provides a means for heterogeneous integration of periodic, curved and angled nanostructures with precisely defined three dimensional patterns.

  17. Multilayer block copolymer meshes by orthogonal self-assembly

    PubMed Central

    Tavakkoli K. G., Amir; Nicaise, Samuel M.; Gadelrab, Karim R.; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo; Ross, Caroline A.; Berggren, Karl K.

    2016-01-01

    Continued scaling-down of lithographic-pattern feature sizes has brought templated self-assembly of block copolymers (BCPs) into the forefront of nanofabrication research. Technologies now exist that facilitate significant control over otherwise unorganized assembly of BCP microdomains to form both long-range and locally complex monolayer patterns. In contrast, the extension of this control into multilayers or 3D structures of BCP microdomains remains limited, despite the possible technological applications in next-generation devices. Here, we develop and analyse an orthogonal self-assembly method in which multiple layers of distinct-molecular-weight BCPs naturally produce nanomesh structures of cylindrical microdomains without requiring layer-by-layer alignment or high-resolution lithographic templating. The mechanisms for orthogonal self-assembly are investigated with both experiment and simulation, and we determine that the control over height and chemical preference of templates are critical process parameters. The method is employed to produce nanomeshes with the shapes of circles and Y-intersections, and is extended to produce three layers of orthogonally oriented cylinders. PMID:26796218

  18. Algorithmic Self-Assembly of DNA Sierpinski Triangles

    PubMed Central

    Rothemund, Paul W. K; Papadakis, Nick

    2004-01-01

    Algorithms and information, fundamental to technological and biological organization, are also an essential aspect of many elementary physical phenomena, such as molecular self-assembly. Here we report the molecular realization, using two-dimensional self-assembly of DNA tiles, of a cellular automaton whose update rule computes the binary function XOR and thus fabricates a fractal pattern—a Sierpinski triangle—as it grows. To achieve this, abstract tiles were translated into DNA tiles based on double-crossover motifs. Serving as input for the computation, long single-stranded DNA molecules were used to nucleate growth of tiles into algorithmic crystals. For both of two independent molecular realizations, atomic force microscopy revealed recognizable Sierpinski triangles containing 100–200 correct tiles. Error rates during assembly appear to range from 1% to 10%. Although imperfect, the growth of Sierpinski triangles demonstrates all the necessary mechanisms for the molecular implementation of arbitrary cellular automata. This shows that engineered DNA self-assembly can be treated as a Turing-universal biomolecular system, capable of implementing any desired algorithm for computation or construction tasks. PMID:15583715

  19. Spectroscopic critical dimension technology (SCD) for directed self assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishibe, Senichi; Dziura, Thaddeus; Nagaswami, Venkat; Gronheid, Roel

    2014-04-01

    Directed self-assembly (DSA) is being actively investigated as a potential patterning solution for future generation devices. While SEM based CD measurement is currently used in research and development, scatterometry-based techniques like spectroscopic CD (SCD) are preferred for high volume manufacturing. SCD can offer information about sub-surface features that are not available from CD-SEM measurement. Besides, SCD is a non-destructive, high throughput technique already adopted in HVM in several advanced nodes. The directed self assembly CD measurement can be challenging because of small dimensions and extremely thin layers in the DSA stack. In this study, the SCD technology was investigated for a 14 nm resolution PS-b-PMMA chemical epitaxy UW process optimized by imec. The DSA stack involves new materials such as cross-linkable polysterene (XPS) of thickness approximately 5 nm, ArF immersion resist (subsequently removed), -OH terminated neutral brush layer, and BCP material (Polystyrene-blockmethyl methacrylate of thickness roughly 20 to 30 nm). The mask contains a large CD and pitch matrix, for studying the quality of self-assembly as a function of the guide pattern dimensions. We report on the ability of SCD to characterize the dimensional variation in these targets and hence provide a viable process control solution.

  20. Nanostructures formed by cyclodextrin covered aminobenzophenones through supramolecular self assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rajendiran, N.; Sankaranarayanan, R. K.; Saravanan, J.

    2014-06-01

    Cyclodextrin (α and β) based nanostructures formed with 2-aminobenzophenone, 3-aminobenzophenone through the supramolecular self assembly are studied by absorption, fluorescence, time-resolved fluorescence, SEM, TEM, FT-IR, DSC, PXRD and 1H NMR. The unequal layer by layer nanosheets and nanoribbons are formed through self assembly of 3ABP/CD inclusion complexes. 2ABP/α-CD complex nanostructures show the self assembly hierarchical thread structure and β-CD complexes displays a nanobrick structure. The formation of nanostructures are prearranged to Hsbnd O⋯H, NH2⋯O and H2N⋯H intermolecular hydrogen bond between individual complexes. The absorption and fluorescence spectral changes explicit formation of 1:1 inclusion complexes and solvent study demonstrate the ESIPT and TICT present in both molecules. The thermodynamic parameters (ΔH, ΔG and ΔS) of 2ABP and 3ABP molecule and the inclusion complexes were determined from semiempirical PM3 calculations.

  1. Controlling RNA self-assembly to form filaments.

    PubMed

    Nasalean, Lorena; Baudrey, Stéphanie; Leontis, Neocles B; Jaeger, Luc

    2006-01-01

    Fundamental control over supra-molecular self-assembly for organization of matter on the nano-scale is a major objective of nanoscience and nanotechnology. 'RNA tectonics' is the design of modular RNA units, called tectoRNAs, that can be programmed to self-assemble into novel nano- and meso-scopic architectures of desired size and shape. We report the three-dimensional design of tectoRNAs incorporating modular 4-way junction (4WJ) motifs, hairpin loops and their cognate loop-receptors to create extended, programmable interaction interfaces. Specific and directional RNA-RNA interactions at these interfaces enable conformational, topological and orientational control of tectoRNA self-assembly. The interacting motifs are precisely positioned within the helical arms of the 4WJ to program assembly from only one helical stacking conformation of the 4WJ. TectoRNAs programmed to assemble with orientational compensation produce micrometer-scale RNA filaments through supra-molecular equilibrium polymerization. As visualized by transmission electron microscopy, these RNA filaments resemble actin filaments from the protein world. This work emphasizes the potential of RNA as a scaffold for designing and engineering new controllable biomaterials mimicking modern cytoskeletal proteins.

  2. Highly conductive self-assembled nanoribbons of coordination polymers.

    PubMed

    Welte, Lorena; Calzolari, Arrigo; Di Felice, Rosa; Zamora, Felix; Gómez-Herrero, Julio

    2010-02-01

    Organic molecules can self-assemble into well-ordered structures, but the conductance of these structures is limited, which is a disadvantage for applications in molecular electronics. Conductivity can be improved by using coordination polymers-in which metal centres are incorporated into a molecular backbone-and such structures have been used as molecular wires by self-assembling them into ordered films on metal surfaces. Here, we report electrically conductive nanoribbons of the coordination polymer [Pt(2)I(S(2)CCH(3))(4)](n) self-assembled on an insulating substrate by direct sublimation of polymer crystals. Conductance atomic force microscopy is used to probe the electrical characteristics of a few polymer chains ( approximately 10) within the nanoribbons. The observed currents exceed those previously sustained in organic and metal-organic molecules assembled on surfaces by several orders of magnitude and over much longer distances. These results, and the results of theoretical calculations based on density functional theory, confirm coordination polymers as candidate materials for applications in molecular electronics.

  3. Molecular pathways for defect annihilation in directed self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Hur, Su-Mi; Thapar, Vikram; Ramírez-Hernández, Abelardo; Khaira, Gurdaman; Segal-Peretz, Tamar; Rincon-Delgadillo, Paulina A; Li, Weihua; Müller, Marcus; Nealey, Paul F; de Pablo, Juan J

    2015-11-17

    Over the last few years, the directed self-assembly of block copolymers by surface patterns has transitioned from academic curiosity to viable contender for commercial fabrication of next-generation nanocircuits by lithography. Recently, it has become apparent that kinetics, and not only thermodynamics, plays a key role for the ability of a polymeric material to self-assemble into a perfect, defect-free ordered state. Perfection, in this context, implies not more than one defect, with characteristic dimensions on the order of 5 nm, over a sample area as large as 100 cm(2). In this work, we identify the key pathways and the corresponding free energy barriers for eliminating defects, and we demonstrate that an extraordinarily large thermodynamic driving force is not necessarily sufficient for their removal. By adopting a concerted computational and experimental approach, we explain the molecular origins of these barriers and how they depend on material characteristics, and we propose strategies designed to overcome them. The validity of our conclusions for industrially relevant patterning processes is established by relying on instruments and assembly lines that are only available at state-of-the-art fabrication facilities, and, through this confluence of fundamental and applied research, we are able to discern the evolution of morphology at the smallest relevant length scales-a handful of nanometers-and present a view of defect annihilation in directed self-assembly at an unprecedented level of detail.

  4. Foams stabilized by multilamellar polyglycerol ester self-assemblies.

    PubMed

    Curschellas, Corina; Kohlbrecher, Joachim; Geue, Thomas; Fischer, Peter; Schmitt, Bertrand; Rouvet, Martine; Windhab, Erich J; Limbach, Hans Jörg

    2013-01-08

    The importance of surfactant self-assemblies in foam stabilization is well-known. The aim of the current study was to investigate the self-assemblies of the nonionic surfactant polyglycerol ester (PGE) in bulk solutions, at the interface and within foams, using a combined approach of small-angle neutron scattering, neutron reflectivity, and electron microscopy. PGE bulk solutions contain vesicles as well as open lamellar structures. Upon heating of the solutions the lamellar spacing increases, with significant differences in the presence of NaCl or CaCl(2) as compared to the standard solution. The adsorption of the multilamellar structures present in the bulk solutions lead to a multilayered film at the air-water interface. The ordering within this film was increased as a result of a 20% area compression mimicking a coalescence event. Finally, PGE foams were shown to be stabilized not only by strong interfacial films but also by agglomerated self-assemblies within the interstitial areas of the foams.

  5. Engineering hierarchical nanostructures by elastocapillary self-assembly.

    PubMed

    De Volder, Michaël; Hart, A John

    2013-02-25

    Surfaces coated with nanoscale filaments such as silicon nanowires and carbon nanotubes are potentially compelling for high-performance battery and capacitor electrodes, photovoltaics, electrical interconnects, substrates for engineered cell growth, dry adhesives, and other smart materials. However, many of these applications require a wet environment or involve wet processing during their synthesis. The capillary forces introduced by these wet environments can lead to undesirable aggregation of nanoscale filaments, but control of capillary forces can enable manipulation of the filaments into discrete aggregates and novel hierarchical structures. Recent studies suggest that the elastocapillary self-assembly of nanofilaments can be a versatile and scalable means to build complex and robust surface architectures. To enable a wider understanding and use of elastocapillary self-assembly as a fabrication technology, we give an overview of the underlying fundamentals and classify typical implementations and surface designs for nanowires, nanotubes, and nanopillars made from a wide variety of materials. Finally, we discuss exemplary applications and future opportunities to realize new engineered surfaces by the elastocapillary self-assembly of nanofilaments.

  6. Polymer adsorption-driven self-assembly of nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, A K; Golumbfskie, A J

    2001-01-01

    Driven by prospective applications, there is much interest in developing materials that can perform specific functions in response to external conditions. One way to design such materials is to create systems which, in response to external inputs, can self-assemble to form structures that are functionally useful. This review focuses on the principles that can be employed to design macromolecules that when presented with an appropriate two-dimensional surface, will self-assemble to form nanostructures that may be functionally useful. We discuss three specific examples: (a) biomimetic recognition between polymers and patterned surfaces. (b) control and manipulation of nanomechanical motion generated by biopolymer adsorption and binding, and (c) creation of patterned nanostructuctures by exposing molten diblock copolymers to patterned surfaces. The discussion serves to illustrate how polymer sequence can be manipulated to affect self-assembly characteristics near adsorbing surfaces. The focus of this review is on theoretical and computational work aimed toward elucidating the principles underlying the phenomena pertinent to the three topics noted above. However, synergistic experiments are also described in the appropriate context.

  7. Towards biologically active self-assemblies: model nucleotide chimeras.

    PubMed

    Vebert-Nardin, Corinne

    2011-01-01

    With this article, we wish to give an overview of our main research activities assessing the potential of a suitable polymer modification of DNA fragments to self-assemble biologically active nanostructures. Specifically, the grafting of a hydrophobic polymer segment on DNA fragments results in amphiphilic nucleotide-based macromolecules, which, owing to both chemical and physical incompatibility, organize in self-assembled structures either on surfaces or in aqueous solution. Through the combination of the existing know-how in polymer chemistry with modern analytical techniques, we are currently focusing on establishing the mechanism of self-assembly of the polymer-modified nucleotide sequences in solution and on surfaces prior to the assessment of their hybridization capacity once involved in the ensemble. With the evaluation of the potential of the functional nanostructures to undergo biological-like adhesion through hybridization one can eventually foresee that the optimal functionality of these bio-inspired systems could be fine-tuned for biological applications such as drug delivery, gene therapy, tissue engineering and the design of either biomedical devices or biosensors.

  8. Dynamic self-assembly and control of microfluidic particle crystals

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Wonhee; Amini, Hamed; Stone, Howard A.; Di Carlo, Dino

    2010-01-01

    Engineered two-phase microfluidic systems have recently shown promise for computation, encryption, and biological processing. For many of these systems, complex control of dispersed-phase frequency and switching is enabled by nonlinearities associated with interfacial stresses. Introducing nonlinearity associated with fluid inertia has recently been identified as an easy to implement strategy to control two-phase (solid-liquid) microscale flows. By taking advantage of inertial effects we demonstrate controllable self-assembling particle systems, uncover dynamics suggesting a unique mechanism of dynamic self-assembly, and establish a framework for engineering microfluidic structures with the possibility of spatial frequency filtering. Focusing on the dynamics of the particle–particle interactions reveals a mechanism for the dynamic self-assembly process; inertial lift forces and a parabolic flow field act together to stabilize interparticle spacings that otherwise would diverge to infinity due to viscous disturbance flows. The interplay of the repulsive viscous interaction and inertial lift also allow us to design and implement microfluidic structures that irreversibly change interparticle spacing, similar to a low-pass filter. Although often not considered at the microscale, nonlinearity due to inertia can provide a platform for high-throughput passive control of particle positions in all directions, which will be useful for applications in flow cytometry, tissue engineering, and metamaterial synthesis. PMID:21149674

  9. Nanoparticle-directed self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers.

    PubMed

    Kamps, Amanda C; Sanchez-Gaytan, Brenda L; Hickey, Robert J; Clarke, Nigel; Fryd, Michael; Park, So-Jung

    2010-09-07

    Nanoparticles can form unique cavity-like structures in core-shell type assemblies of block copolymers through the cooperative self-assembly of nanoparticles and block copolymers. We show that the self-assembly behavior is general for common as-synthesized alkyl-terminated nanoparticles for a range of nanoparticle sizes. We examined various self-assembly conditions such as solvent compositions, nanoparticle coordinating ligands, volume fraction of nanoparticles, and nanoparticle sizes in order to elucidate the mechanism of the radial assembly formation. These experiments along with strong segregation theory calculations indicated that both the enthalpic interaction and the polymer stretching energy are important factors in the coassembly formation. The slightly unfavorable interaction between the hydrophobic segment of polymers and alkyl-terminated nanoparticles causes the accumulation of nanoparticles at the interface between the polymer core and the shell, forming the unique cavity-like structure. The coassemblies were stabilized for a limited range of nanoparticle volume fractions within which the inclusion of nanoparticle layers reduces the polymer stretching. The volume fraction range yielding the well-defined radial coassembly structure was mapped out with varying nanoparticle sizes. The experimental and theoretical phase map provides the guideline for the coassembly formation of as-synthesized alkyl-terminated nanoparticles and amphiphilic block copolymers.

  10. Self-assembled amyloid fibrils with controllable conformational heterogeneity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Gyudo; Lee, Wonseok; Lee, Hyungbeen; Lee, Chang Young; Eom, Kilho; Kwon, Taeyun

    2015-11-01

    Amyloid fibrils are a hallmark of neurodegenerative diseases and exhibit a conformational diversity that governs their pathological functions. Despite recent findings concerning the pathological role of their conformational diversity, the way in which the heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils can be formed has remained elusive. Here, we show that microwave-assisted chemistry affects the self-assembly process of amyloid fibril formation, which results in their conformational heterogeneity. In particular, microwave-assisted chemistry allows for delicate control of the thermodynamics of the self-assembly process, which enabled us to tune the molecular structure of β-lactoglobulin amyloid fibrils. The heterogeneous conformations of amyloid fibrils, which can be tuned with microwave-assisted chemistry, are attributed to the microwave-driven thermal energy affecting the electrostatic interaction during the self-assembly process. Our study demonstrates how microwave-assisted chemistry can be used to gain insight into the origin of conformational heterogeneity of amyloid fibrils as well as the design principles showing how the molecular structures of amyloid fibrils can be controlled.

  11. Supramolecular Chemistry And Self-assembly Special Feature: Virus-assisted loading of polymer nanocontainer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graff, Alexandra; Sauer, Marc; van Gelder, Patrick; Meier, Wolfgang

    2002-04-01

    We present a DNA-containing polymeric nanocontainer using the self-assembled superstructure of amphiphilic block copolymers in aqueous solutions. To demonstrate that DNA translocation is possible across a completely synthetic block copolymer membrane, we have used a phage transfection strategy as a DNA-transfer model system. For this purpose the bacterial channel forming protein LamB was reconstituted in ABA-triblock copolymer vesicles. The outer membrane protein LamB is a specific transporter for maltodextrins but also serves as a receptor for phage to trigger the ejection of phage DNA. We demonstrate that the functionality of the LamB protein is fully preserved despite the artificial surrounding. This leads to a type of polymeric vehicle for DNA that could be useful for gene therapy.

  12. Mechanical Self-Assembly of a Strain-Engineered Flexible Layer: Wrinkling, Rolling, and Twisting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zi; Huang, Gaoshan; Trase, Ian; Han, Xiaomin; Mei, Yongfeng

    2016-01-01

    Self-shaping of curved structures, especially those involving flexible thin layers, is attracting increasing attention because of their broad potential applications in, e.g., nanoelectromechanical andmicroelectromechanical systems, sensors, artificial skins, stretchable electronics, robotics, and drug delivery. Here, we provide an overview of recent experimental, theoretical, and computational studies on the mechanical self-assembly of strain-engineered thin layers, with an emphasis on systems in which the competition between bending and stretching energy gives rise to a variety of deformations, such as wrinkling, rolling, and twisting. We address the principle of mechanical instabilities, which is often manifested in wrinkling or multistability of strain-engineered thin layers. The principles of shape selection and transition in helical ribbons are also systematically examined. We hope that a more comprehensive understanding of the mechanical principles underlying these rich phenomena can foster the development of techniques for manufacturing functional three-dimensional structures on demand for a broad spectrum of engineering applications.

  13. Optical properties of a fabricated self-assembled bottom-up bulk metamaterial.

    PubMed

    Mühlig, S; Rockstuhl, C; Yannopapas, V; Bürgi, T; Shalkevich, N; Lederer, F

    2011-05-09

    We investigate the optical properties of a true three-dimensional metamaterial that was fabricated using a self-assembly bottom-up technology. The metamaterial consists of closely packed spherical clusters being formed by a large number of non-touching gold nanoparticles. After presenting experimental results, we apply a generalized Mie theory to analyze its spectral response revealing that it is dominated by a magnetic dipole contribution. By using an effective medium theory we show that the fabricated metamaterial exhibits a dispersive effective permeability, i.e. artificial magnetism. Although this metamaterial is not yet left-handed it might serve as a starting point for achieving bulk metamaterials by using bottom-up approaches.

  14. Towards in vivo mutation analysis: knock-out of specific chlorophylls bound to the light-harvesting complexes of Arabidopsis thaliana - the case of CP24 (Lhcb6).

    PubMed

    Passarini, Francesca; Xu, Pengqi; Caffarri, Stefano; Hille, Jacques; Croce, Roberta

    2014-09-01

    In the last ten years, a large series of studies have targeted antenna complexes of plants (Lhc) with the aim of understanding the mechanisms of light harvesting and photoprotection. Combining spectroscopy, modeling and mutation analyses, the role of individual pigments in these processes has been highlighted in vitro. In plants, however, these proteins are associated with multiple complexes of the photosystems and function within this framework. In this work, we have envisaged a way to bridge the gap between in vitro and in vivo studies by knocking out in vivo pigments that have been proposed to play an important role in excitation energy transfer between the complexes or in photoprotection. We have complemented a CP24 knock-out mutant of Arabidopsis thaliana with the CP24 (Lhcb6) gene carrying a His-tag and with a mutated version lacking the ligand for chlorophyll 612, a specific pigment that in vitro experiments have indicated as the lowest energy site of the complex. Both complexes efficiently integrated into the thylakoid membrane and assembled into the PSII supercomplexes, indicating that the His-tag does not impair the organization in vivo. The presence of the His-tag allowed the purification of CP24-WT and of CP24-612 mutant in their native states. It is shown that CP24-WT coordinates 10 chlorophylls and 2 carotenoid molecules and has properties identical to those of the reconstituted complex, demonstrating that the complex self-assembled in vitro assumes the same folding as in the plant. The absence of the ligand for chlorophyll 612 leads to the loss of one Chl a and of lutein, again as in vitro, indicating the feasibility of the method. This article is part of a special issue entitled: photosynthesis research for sustainability: keys to produce clean energy.

  15. Intramolecular energy transfer within butadiyne-linked chlorophyll and porphyrin dimer-faced, self-assembled prisms.

    PubMed

    Kelley, Richard F; Lee, Suk Joong; Wilson, Thea M; Nakamura, Yasuyuki; Tiede, David M; Osuka, Atsuhiro; Hupp, Joseph T; Wasielewski, Michael R

    2008-04-02

    The synthesis and photophysical properties of butadiyne-linked chlorophyll and porphyrin dimers in toluene solution and in several self-assembled prismatic structures are described. The butadiyne linkage between the 20-positions of the macrocycles results in new electronic transitions polarized along the long axes of the dimers. These transitions greatly increase the ability of these dimers to absorb the solar spectrum over a broad wavelength range. Femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy reveals the relative rate of rotation of the macrocycles around the butadiyne bond joining them. Following addition of 3-fold symmetric, metal-coordinating ligands, both macrocyclic dimers self-assemble into prismatic structures in which the dimers comprise the faces of the prisms. These structures were confirmed by small-angle X-ray scattering experiments in solution using a synchrotron source. Photoexcitation of the prismatic assemblies reveals that efficient, through-space energy transfer occurs between the macrocyclic dimers within the prisms. The distance dependence of energy transfer between the faces of the prisms was observed by varying the size of the prismatic assemblies through the use of 3-fold symmetric ligands having arms with different lengths. These results show that self-assembly of discrete macrocyclic prisms provides a useful new strategy for controlling singlet exciton flow in antenna systems for artificial photosynthesis and solar cell applications.

  16. Intramolecular energy transfer with butadiyne-linked chlorophyll and porphyrin dimer-faced, self-assembled prisms.

    SciTech Connect

    Kelley, R. F.; Lee, S. J.; Wilson, T. M.; Nakamura, Y.; Tiede, D. M.; Osuka, A.; Hupp, J. T.; Wasielewski, M. R.; SUF-USR; Chemical Sciences and Engineering Division; Northwestern Univ.; Kyoto Univ.

    2008-01-01

    The synthesis and photophysical properties of butadiyne-linked chlorophyll and porphyrin dimers in toluene solution and in several self-assembled prismatic structures are described. The butadiyne linkage between the 20-positions of the macrocycles results in new electronic transitions polarized along the long axes of the dimers. These transitions greatly increase the ability of these dimers to absorb the solar spectrum over a broad wavelength range. Femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy reveals the relative rate of rotation of the macrocycles around the butadiyne bond joining them. Following addition of 3-fold symmetric, metal-coordinating ligands, both macrocyclic dimers self-assemble into prismatic structures in which the dimers comprise the faces of the prisms. These structures were confirmed by small-angle X-ray scattering experiments in solution using a synchrotron source. Photoexcitation of the prismatic assemblies reveals that efficient, through-space energy transfer occurs between the macrocyclic dimers within the prisms. The distance dependence of energy transfer between the faces of the prisms was observed by varying the size of the prismatic assemblies through the use of 3-fold symmetric ligands having arms with different lengths. These results show that self-assembly of discrete macrocyclic prisms provides a useful new strategy for controlling singlet exciton flow in antenna systems for artificial photosynthesis and solar cell applications.

  17. Self-Assembly of Plasmonic Nanoclusters for Optical Metauids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schade, Nicholas Benjamin

    I discuss experimental progress towards developing a material with an isotropic, negative index of refraction at optical frequencies. The simplest way to make such a material is to create a metafluid, or a disordered collection of subwavelength, isotropic electromagnetic resonators. Small clusters of metal particles, such as tetrahedra, serve as these constituents. What is needed are methods for manufacturing these structures with high precision and in sufficient yield that their resonances are identical. Jonathan Fan et al. [Science, 328 (5982), 1135-1138, 2010] demonstrated that colloidal self-assembly is a means of preparing electromagnetic resonators from metal nanoparticles. However, the resonances are sensitive to the separation gaps between particles. Standard synthesis routes for metal nanoparticles yield crystals or nanoshells that are inadequate for metafluids due to polydispersity, faceting, and thermal instabilities. To ensure that the separation gaps and resonances are uniform, more monodisperse spherical particles are needed. An additional challenge is the self-assembly of tetrahedral clusters in high yield from these particles. In self-assembly approaches that others have examined previously, the yield of any particular type of cluster is low. In this dissertation I present solutions to several of these problems, developed in collaboration with my research group and others. We demonstrate that slow chemical etching can transform octahedral gold crystals into ultrasmooth, monodisperse nanospheres. The particles can serve as seeds for the growth of larger octahedra which can in turn be etched. The size of the gold nanospheres can therefore be adjusted as desired. We further show that in colloidal mixtures of two sphere species that strongly bind to one another, the sphere size ratio determines the size distribution of self-assembled clusters. At a critical size ratio, tetrahedral clusters assemble in high yield. We explain the experimentally observed

  18. Cellular membrane enrichment of self-assembling D-peptides for cell surface engineering.

    PubMed

    Wang, Huaimin; Wang, Youzhi; Han, Aitian; Cai, Yanbin; Xiao, Nannan; Wang, Ling; Ding, Dan; Yang, Zhimou

    2014-06-25

    We occasionally found that several self-assembling peptides containing D-amino acids would be preferentially enriched in cellular membranes at self-assembled stages while distributed evenly in the cytoplasma of cells at unassembled stages. Self-assembling peptides containing only Lamino acids distributed evenly in cytoplasma of cells at both self-assembled and unassembled stages. The self-assembling peptides containing D-amino acids could therefore be applied for engineering cell surface with peptides. More importantly, by integrating a protein binding peptide (a PDZ domain binding hexapeptide of WRESAI) with the self-assembling peptide containing D-amino acids, protein could also be introduced to the cell surface. This study not only provided a novel approach to engineer cell surface, but also highlighted the unusual properties and potential applications of self-assembling peptides containing D-amino acids in regenerative medicine, drug delivery, and tissue engineering.

  19. A Bloch equation approach to intensity dependent optical spectra of light harvesting complex II: excitation dependence of light harvesting complex II pump-probe spectra.

    PubMed

    Richter, Marten; Renger, Thomas; Knorr, Andreas

    2008-01-01

    On the basis of the recent progress in the resolution of the structure of the antenna light harvesting complex II (LHC II) of the photosystem II, we propose a microscopically motivated theory to predict excitation intensity-dependent spectra. We show that optical Bloch equations provide the means to include all 2( N ) excited states of an oligomer complex of N coupled two-level systems and analyze the effects of Pauli Blocking and exciton-exciton annihilation on pump-probe spectra. We use LHC Bloch equations for 14 Coulomb coupled two-level systems, which describe the S (0) and S (1) level of every chlorophyll molecule. All parameter introduced into the Hamiltonian are based on microscopic structure and a quantum chemical model. The derived Bloch equations describe not only linear absorption but also the intensity dependence of optical spectra in a regime where the interplay of Pauli Blocking effects as well as exciton-exciton annihilation effects are important. As an example, pump-probe spectra are discussed. The observed saturation of the spectra for high intensities can be viewed as a relaxation channel blockade on short time scales due to Pauli blocking. The theoretical investigation is useful for the interpretation of the experimental data, if the experimental conditions exceed the low intensity pump limit and effects like strong Pauli Blocking and exciton-exciton annihilation need to be considered. These effects become important when multiple excitations are generated by the pump pulse in the complex.

  20. Polaron effects on the performance of light-harvesting systems: a quantum heat engine perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Dazhi; Wang, Chen; Zhao, Yang; Cao, Jianshu

    2016-02-01

    We explore energy transfer in a generic three-level system, which is coupled to three non-equilibrium baths. Built on the concept of quantum heat engine, our three-level model describes non-equilibrium quantum processes including light-harvesting energy transfer, nano-scale heat transfer, photo-induced isomerization, and photovoltaics in double quantum-dots. In the context of light-harvesting, the excitation energy is first pumped up by sunlight, then is transferred via two excited states which are coupled to a phonon bath, and finally decays to the reaction center. The efficiency of this process is evaluated by steady state analysis via a polaron-transformed master equation; thus the entire range of the system-phonon coupling strength can be covered. We show that the coupling with the phonon bath not only modifies the steady state, resulting in population inversion, but also introduces a finite steady state coherence which optimizes the energy transfer flux and efficiency. In the strong coupling limit, the steady state coherence disappears and the efficiency recovers the heat engine limit given by Scovil and Schultz-Dubois (1959 Phys. Rev. Lett. 2 262).

  1. Enhanced Photocurrent of Transparent CuFeO2 Photocathodes by Self-Light-Harvesting Architecture.

    PubMed

    Oh, Yunjung; Yang, Wooseok; Kim, Jimin; Jeong, Sunho; Moon, Jooho

    2017-04-13

    Efficient sunlight-driven water-splitting devices can be achieved by using an optically and energetically well-matched pair of photoelectrodes in a tandem configuration. The key for maximizing the photoelectrochemical efficiency is the use of a highly transparent front photoelectrode with a band gap below 2.0 eV. Herein, we propose two-dimensional (2D) photonic crystal (PC) structures consisting of a CuFeO2-decorated microsphere monolayer, which serve as self-light-harvesting architectures allowing for amplified light absorption and high transparency. The photocurrent densities are evaluated for three CuFeO2 2D PC-based photoelectrodes with microspheres of different sizes. The optical analysis confirmed the presence of a photonic stop band that generates slow light and at the same time amplifies the absorption of light. The 410 nm sized CuFeO2-decorated microsphere 2D PC photocathode shows an exceptionally high visible light transmittance of 76.4% and a relatively high photocurrent of 0.2 mA cm(-2) at 0.6 V vs a reversible hydrogen electrode. The effect of the microsphere size on the carrier collection efficiency was analyzed by in situ conductive atomic force microscopy observation under illumination. Our novel synthetic method to produce self-light-harvesting nanostructures provides a promising approach for the effective use of solar energy by highly transparent photocathodes.

  2. Multireference Excitation Energies for Bacteriochlorophylls A within Light Harvesting System 2.

    PubMed

    Anda, André; Hansen, Thorsten; De Vico, Luca

    2016-03-08

    Light-harvesting system 2 (LH2) of purple bacteria is one of the most popular antenna complexes used to study Nature's way of collecting and channeling solar energy. The dynamics of the absorbed energy is probed by ultrafast spectroscopy. Simulation of these experiments relies on fitting a range of parameters to reproduce the spectra. Here, we present a method that can determine key parameters to chemical accuracy. These will eliminate free variables in the modeling, thus reducing the problem. Using MS-RASPT2/RASSCF calculations, we compute excitation energies and transition dipole moments of all bacteriochlorophylls in LH2. We find that the excitation energies vary among the bacteriochlorophyll monomers and that they are regulated by the curvature of the macrocycle ring and the dihedral angle of an acetyl moiety. Increasing the curvature lifts the ground state energy, which causes a red shift of the excitation energy. Increasing the torsion of the acetyl moiety raises the excited state energy, resulting in a blue shift of the excitation energy. The obtained results mark a giant leap for multiconfigurational multireference quantum chemical methods in the photochemistry of biological systems, which can prove instrumental in exposing the underlying physics of photosynthetic light-harvesting.

  3. Excited state dynamics in photosynthetic reaction center and light harvesting complex 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strümpfer, Johan; Schulten, Klaus

    2012-08-01

    Key to efficient harvesting of sunlight in photosynthesis is the first energy conversion process in which electronic excitation establishes a trans-membrane charge gradient. This conversion is accomplished by the photosynthetic reaction center (RC) that is, in case of the purple photosynthetic bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides studied here, surrounded by light harvesting complex 1 (LH1). The RC employs six pigment molecules to initiate the conversion: four bacteriochlorophylls and two bacteriopheophytins. The excited states of these pigments interact very strongly and are simultaneously influenced by the surrounding thermal protein environment. Likewise, LH1 employs 32 bacteriochlorophylls influenced in their excited state dynamics by strong interaction between the pigments and by interaction with the protein environment. Modeling the excited state dynamics in the RC as well as in LH1 requires theoretical methods, which account for both pigment-pigment interaction and pigment-environment interaction. In the present study we describe the excitation dynamics within a RC and excitation transfer between light harvesting complex 1 (LH1) and RC, employing the hierarchical equation of motion method. For this purpose a set of model parameters that reproduce RC as well as LH1 spectra and observed oscillatory excitation dynamics in the RC is suggested. We find that the environment has a significant effect on LH1-RC excitation transfer and that excitation transfers incoherently between LH1 and RC.

  4. Light Harvesting and Photocurrent Generation in a Conjugated Polymer Nanoparticle-Reduced Graphene Oxide Composite.

    PubMed

    Patra, Amitava; Ghosh, Arnab; Jana, Bikash; Maiti, Sourav; Bera, Rajesh; Ghosh, Hiren

    2017-03-14

    Polymer - graphene nanocomposites are promising candidates towards light harvesting systems such as photocatalysis, photovoltaics; where significant charge separation occurs due to photoinduced electron transfer. Much attention has been paid to use reduced graphene oxide (r-GO) as template for anchoring various nanomaterials due to its efficient electron accepting and transport property. Here, we have prepared Poly[2-methoxy-5-(2-ethylhexyloxy)-1,4-phenylenevinylene] (MEH-PPV) nanoparticles from MEH-PPV polymer and investigate the change in photophysical properties due to formation of polymer nanoparticles from molecular state by using steady state and time resolved spectroscopy. Nanocomposites were designed by adding hexadecylamine (HDA) functionalized positively charged MEH-PPV PNP with negatively charged r-GO solution. Ultrafast femtosecond up-conversion and Transient absorption spectroscopy unequivocally confirms the electron transfer process from excited state of MEH-PPV PNP to r-GO at the interface of nanocomposite. Analysis reveals that the charge separation time is found to be pulse width limited (<100fs). Due to charge separation in these nanocomposites, an increment (2.6 fold) of photocurrent under visible light illumination is obtained. The fundamental understanding of the charge transfer dynamics open up new possibilities to design efficient light harvesting system based on inorganic-organic hybrid system.

  5. Quantum chemical insights in energy dissipation and carotenoid radical cation formation in light harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Wormit, Michael; Dreuw, Andreas

    2007-06-21

    Light harvesting complexes (LHCs) have been identified in all photosynthetic organisms. To understand their function in light harvesting and energy dissipation, detailed knowledge about possible excitation energy transfer (EET) and electron transfer (ET) processes in these pigment proteins is of prime importance. This again requires the study of electronically excited states of the involved pigment molecules, in LHCs of chlorophylls and carotenoids. This paper represents a critical review of recent quantum chemical calculations on EET and ET processes between pigment pairs relevant for the major LHCs of green plants (LHC-II) and of purple bacteria (LH2). The theoretical methodology for a meaningful investigation of such processes is described in detail, and benefits and limitations of standard methods are discussed. The current status of excited state calculations on chlorophylls and carotenoids is outlined. It is focused on the possibility of EET and ET in the context of chlorophyll fluorescence quenching in LHC-II and carotenoid radical cation formation in LH2. In the context of non-photochemical quenching of green plants, it is shown that replacement of the carotenoid violaxanthin by zeaxanthin in its binding pocket of LHC-II can not result in efficient quenching. In LH2, our computational results give strong evidence that the S(1) states of the carotenoids are involved in carotenoid cation formation. By comparison of theoretical findings with recent experimental data, a general mechanism for carotenoid radical cation formation is suggested.

  6. Pigment structure in the FCP-like light-harvesting complex from Chromera velia.

    PubMed

    Llansola-Portoles, Manuel J; Uragami, Chiasa; Pascal, Andrew A; Bina, David; Litvin, Radek; Robert, Bruno

    2016-11-01

    Resonance Raman spectroscopy was used to evaluate pigment structure in the FCP-like light-harvesting complex of Chromera velia (Chromera light-harvesting complex or CLH). This antenna protein contains chlorophyll a, violaxanthin and a new isofucoxanthin-like carotenoid (called Ifx-l). We show that Ifx-l is present in two non-equivalent binding pockets with different conformations, having their (0,0) absorption maxima at 515 and 548nm respectively. In this complex, only one violaxanthin population absorbing at 486nm is observed. All the CLH-bound carotenoid molecules are in all-trans configuration, and among the two Ifx-l carotenoid molecules, the red one is twisted, as is the red-absorbing lutein in LHCII trimers. Analysis of the carbonyl stretching region for Chl a excitations indicates CLH binds up to seven Chl a molecules in five non-equivalent binding sites, in reasonable agreement with sequence analyses which have identified eight potential coordinating residues. The binding modes and conformations of CLH-bound pigments are discussed with respect to the known structures of LHCII and FCP.

  7. Integral Light-Harvesting Complex Expression In Symbiodinium Within The Coral Acropora aspera Under Thermal Stress

    PubMed Central

    Gierz, Sarah L.; Gordon, Benjamin R.; Leggat, William

    2016-01-01

    Coral reef success is largely dependent on the symbiosis between coral hosts and dinoflagellate symbionts belonging to the genus Symbiodinium. Elevated temperatures can result in the expulsion of Symbiodinium or loss of their photosynthetic pigments and is known as coral bleaching. It has been postulated that the expression of light-harvesting protein complexes (LHCs), which bind chlorophylls (chl) and carotenoids, are important in photobleaching. This study explored the effect a sixteen-day thermal stress (increasing daily from 25–34 °C) on integral LHC (chlorophyll a-chlorophyll c2-peridinin protein complex (acpPC)) gene expression in Symbiodinium within the coral Acropora aspera. Thermal stress leads to a decrease in Symbiodinium photosynthetic efficiency by day eight, while symbiont density was significantly lower on day sixteen. Over this time period, the gene expression of five Symbiodinium acpPC genes was quantified. Three acpPC genes exhibited up-regulated expression when corals were exposed to temperatures above 31.5 °C (acpPCSym_1:1, day sixteen; acpPCSym_15, day twelve; and acpPCSym_18, day ten and day sixteen). In contrast, the expression of acpPCSym_5:1 and acpPCSym_10:1 was unchanged throughout the experiment. Interestingly, the three acpPC genes with increased expression cluster together in a phylogenetic analysis of light-harvesting complexes. PMID:27117333

  8. Chlorophyll and carotenoid binding in a simple red algal light-harvesting complex crosses phylogenetic lines

    PubMed Central

    Grabowski, Beatrice; Cunningham, Francis X.; Gantt, Elisabeth

    2001-01-01

    The membrane proteins of peripheral light-harvesting complexes (LHCs) bind chlorophylls and carotenoids and transfer energy to the reaction centers for photosynthesis. LHCs of chlorophytes, chromophytes, dinophytes, and rhodophytes are similar in that they have three transmembrane regions and several highly conserved Chl-binding residues. All LHCs bind Chl a, but in specific taxa certain characteristic pigments accompany Chl a: Chl b and lutein in chlorophytes, Chl c and fucoxanthin in chromophytes, Chl c and peridinin in dinophytes, and zeaxanthin in rhodophytes. The specificity of pigment binding was examined by in vitro reconstitution of various pigments with a simple light-harvesting protein (LHCaR1), from a red alga (Porphyridium cruentum), that normally has eight Chl a and four zeaxanthin molecules. The pigments typical of a chlorophyte (Spinacea oleracea), a chromophyte (Thallasiosira fluviatilis), and a dinophyte (Prorocentrum micans) were found to functionally bind to this protein as evidenced by their participation in energy transfer to Chl a, the terminal pigment. This is a demonstration of a functional relatedness of rhodophyte and higher plant LHCs. The results suggest that eight Chl-binding sites per polypeptide are an ancestral trait, and that the flexibility to bind various Chl and carotenoid pigments may have been retained throughout the evolution of LHCs. PMID:11226340

  9. Synthesis, characterization and light harvesting properties of nickel(II) diimine dithiolate complexes.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Abhinav; Auvinen, Sami; Trivedi, Manoj; Chauhan, Ratna; Alatalo, Matti

    2013-11-01

    Four Ni(II) diimine dithiolato complexes viz. [Ni{(S2C2Ph2)(1,10-Phenanthroline)}] (2), [Ni{(S2C2Ph2)(3,3'-dicarboxy-2,2'-bipyridyl)}] (3), [Ni{(S2C2Ph2)(4,4'-dicarboxy-2,2'-bipyridyl)}] (4) [Ni{(S2C2Ph2)(2,2'-bipyridyl)}] (5) have been prepared from [Ni(S2C2Ph2)2] (1) and characterized by microanalyses, UV-Vis, IR, (1)H and (13)C NMR. Attempts have been made to explain the nature of charge transfer in these molecules through quantum chemical calculations. The light harvesting properties of all the compounds have been studied using these compounds as photosensitizers in TiO2-based DSSC. The change in position of anchoring group on diimine derivative leads to different structural, electronic and light harvesting properties about the Ni(II) diimine dithiolate dyes.

  10. Chlorophyll a and carotenoid triplet states in light-harvesting complex II of higher plants.

    PubMed Central

    Peterman, E J; Dukker, F M; van Grondelle, R; van Amerongen, H

    1995-01-01

    Laser-flash-induced transient absorption measurements were performed on trimeric light-harvesting complex II to study carotenoid (Car) and chlorophyll (Chl) triplet states as a function of temperature. In these complexes efficient transfer of triplets from Chl to Car occurs as a protection mechanism against singlet oxygen formation. It appears that at room temperature all triplets are being transferred from Chl to Car; at lower temperatures (77 K and below) the transfer is less efficient and chlorophyll triplets can be observed. In the presence of oxygen at room temperature the Car triplets are partly quenched by oxygen and two different Car triplet spectral species can be distinguished because of a difference in quenching rate. One of these spectral species is replaced by another one upon cooling to 4 Ki demonstrating that at least three carotenoids are in close contact with chlorophylls. The triplet minus singlet absorption (T-S) spectra show maxima at 504-506 nm and 517-523 nm, respectively. In the Chl Qy region absorption changes can be observed that are caused by Car triplets. The T-S spectra in the Chl region show an interesting temperature dependence which indicates that various Car's are in contact with different Chl a molecules. The results are discussed in terms of the crystal structure of light-harvesting complex II. PMID:8599673

  11. Lutein epoxide cycle, light harvesting and photoprotection in species of the tropical tree genus Inga.

    PubMed

    Matsubara, Shizue; Krause, G Heinrich; Seltmann, Martin; Virgo, Aurelio; Kursar, Thomas A; Jahns, Peter; Winter, Klaus

    2008-04-01

    Dynamics and possible function of the lutein epoxide (Lx) cycle, that is, the reversible conversion of Lx to lutein (L) in the light-harvesting antennae, were investigated in leaves of tropical tree species. Photosynthetic pigments were quantified in nine Inga species and species from three other genera. In Inga, Lx levels were high in shade leaves (mostly above 20 mmol mol(-1) chlorophyll) and low in sun leaves. In Virola surinamensis, both sun and shade leaves exhibited very high Lx contents (about 60 mmol mol(-1) chlorophyll). In Inga marginata grown under high irradiance, Lx slowly accumulated within several days upon transfer to deep shade. When shade leaves of I. marginata were briefly exposed to the sunlight, both violaxanthin and Lx were quickly de-epoxidized. Subsequently, overnight recovery occurred only for violaxanthin, not for Lx. In such leaves, containing reduced levels of Lx and increased levels of L, chlorophyll fluorescence induction showed significantly slower reduction of the photosystem II electron acceptor, Q(A), and faster formation as well as a higher level of non-photochemical quenching. The results indicate that slow Lx accumulation in Inga leaves may improve light harvesting under limiting light, while quick de-epoxidation of Lx to L in response to excess light may enhance photoprotection.

  12. Integral Light-Harvesting Complex Expression In Symbiodinium Within The Coral Acropora aspera Under Thermal Stress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gierz, Sarah L.; Gordon, Benjamin R.; Leggat, William

    2016-04-01

    Coral reef success is largely dependent on the symbiosis between coral hosts and dinoflagellate symbionts belonging to the genus Symbiodinium. Elevated temperatures can result in the expulsion of Symbiodinium or loss of their photosynthetic pigments and is known as coral bleaching. It has been postulated that the expression of light-harvesting protein complexes (LHCs), which bind chlorophylls (chl) and carotenoids, are important in photobleaching. This study explored the effect a sixteen-day thermal stress (increasing daily from 25–34 °C) on integral LHC (chlorophyll a-chlorophyll c2-peridinin protein complex (acpPC)) gene expression in Symbiodinium within the coral Acropora aspera. Thermal stress leads to a decrease in Symbiodinium photosynthetic efficiency by day eight, while symbiont density was significantly lower on day sixteen. Over this time period, the gene expression of five Symbiodinium acpPC genes was quantified. Three acpPC genes exhibited up-regulated expression when corals were exposed to temperatures above 31.5 °C (acpPCSym_1:1, day sixteen; acpPCSym_15, day twelve; and acpPCSym_18, day ten and day sixteen). In contrast, the expression of acpPCSym_5:1 and acpPCSym_10:1 was unchanged throughout the experiment. Interestingly, the three acpPC genes with increased expression cluster together in a phylogenetic analysis of light-harvesting complexes.

  13. Light-harvesting and ultrafast energy migration in porphyrin-based metal-organic frameworks.

    PubMed

    Son, Ho-Jin; Jin, Shengye; Patwardhan, Sameer; Wezenberg, Sander J; Jeong, Nak Cheon; So, Monica; Wilmer, Christopher E; Sarjeant, Amy A; Schatz, George C; Snurr, Randall Q; Farha, Omar K; Wiederrecht, Gary P; Hupp, Joseph T

    2013-01-16

    Given that energy (exciton) migration in natural photosynthesis primarily occurs in highly ordered porphyrin-like pigments (chlorophylls), equally highly ordered porphyrin-based metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) might be expected to exhibit similar behavior, thereby facilitating antenna-like light-harvesting and positioning such materials for use in solar energy conversion schemes. Herein, we report the first example of directional, long-distance energy migration within a MOF. Two MOFs, namely F-MOF and DA-MOF that are composed of two Zn(II) porphyrin struts [5,15-dipyridyl-10,20-bis(pentafluorophenyl)porphinato]zinc(II) and [5,15-bis[4-(pyridyl)ethynyl]-10,20-diphenylporphinato]zinc(II), respectively, were investigated. From fluorescence quenching experiments and theoretical calculations, we find that the photogenerated exciton migrates over a net distance of up to ~45 porphyrin struts within its lifetime in DA-MOF (but only ~3 in F-MOF), with a high anisotropy along a specific direction. The remarkably efficient exciton migration in DA-MOF is attributed to enhanced π-conjugation through the addition of two acetylene moieties in the porphyrin molecule, which leads to greater Q-band absorption intensity and much faster exciton-hopping (energy transfer between adjacent porphyrin struts). The long distance and directional energy migration in DA-MOF suggests promising applications of this compound or related compounds in solar energy conversion schemes as an efficient light-harvesting and energy-transport component.

  14. Crystal structure of spinach major light-harvesting complex at 2.72Å resolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Zhenfeng; Yan, Hanchi; Wang, Kebin; Kuang, Tingyun; Zhang, Jiping; Gui, Lulu; An, Xiaomin; Chang, Wenrui

    2004-03-01

    The major light-harvesting complex of photosystem II (LHC-II) serves as the principal solar energy collector in the photosynthesis of green plants and presumably also functions in photoprotection under high-light conditions. Here we report the first X-ray structure of LHC-II in icosahedral proteoliposome assembly at atomic detail. One asymmetric unit of a large R32 unit cell contains ten LHC-II monomers. The 14 chlorophylls (Chl) in each monomer can be unambiguously distinguished as eight Chla and six Chlb molecules. Assignment of the orientation of the transition dipole moment of each chlorophyll has been achieved. All Chlb are located around the interface between adjacent monomers, and together with Chla they are the basis for efficient light harvesting. Four carotenoid-binding sites per monomer have been observed. The xanthophyll-cycle carotenoid at the monomer-monomer interface may be involved in the non-radiative dissipation of excessive energy, one of the photoprotective strategies that have evolved in plants.

  15. Structural insights into energy regulation of light-harvesting complex CP29 from spinach.

    PubMed

    Pan, Xiaowei; Li, Mei; Wan, Tao; Wang, Longfei; Jia, Chenjun; Hou, Zhiqiang; Zhao, Xuelin; Zhang, Jiping; Chang, Wenrui

    2011-03-01

    CP29, one of the minor light-harvesting complexes of higher-plant photosystem II, absorbs and transfers solar energy for photosynthesis and also has important roles in photoprotection. We have solved the crystal structure of spinach CP29 at 2.80-Å resolution. Each CP29 monomer contains 13 chlorophyll and 3 carotenoid molecules, which differs considerably from the major light-harvesting complex LHCII and the previously proposed CP29 model. The 13 chlorophyll-binding sites are assigned as eight chlorophyll a sites, four chlorophyll b and one putative mixed site occupied by both chlorophylls a and b. Based on the present X-ray structure, an integrated pigment network in CP29 is constructed. Two special clusters of pigment molecules, namely a615-a611-a612-Lut and Vio(Zea)-a603-a609, have been identified and might function as potential energy-quenching centers and as the exit or entrance in energy-transfer pathways.

  16. Zeaxanthin Radical Cation Formation in Minor Light-Harvesting Complexes of Higher Plant Antenna

    SciTech Connect

    Avenson, Thomas H.; Ahn, Tae Kyu; Zigmantas, Donatas; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Li, Zhirong; Ballottari, Matteo; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R.

    2008-01-31

    Previous work on intact thylakoid membranes showed that transient formation of a zeaxanthin radical cation was correlated with regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting via energy-dependent quenching. A molecular mechanism for such quenching was proposed to involve charge transfer within a chlorophyll-zeaxanthin heterodimer. Using near infrared (880-1100 nm) transient absorption spectroscopy, we demonstrate that carotenoid (mainly zeaxanthin) radical cation generation occurs solely in isolated minor light-harvesting complexes that bind zeaxanthin, consistent with the engagement of charge transfer quenching therein. We estimated that less than 0.5percent of the isolated minor complexes undergo charge transfer quenching in vitro, whereas the fraction of minor complexes estimated to be engaged in charge transfer quenching in isolated thylakoids was more than 80 times higher. We conclude that minor complexes which bind zeaxanthin are sites of charge transfer quenching in vivo and that they can assume Non-quenching and Quenching conformations, the equilibrium LHC(N)<--> LHC(Q) of which is modulated by the transthylakoid pH gradient, the PsbS protein, and protein-protein interactions.

  17. Protein kinase that phosphorylates light-harvesting complex is autophosphorylated and is associated with photosystem II

    SciTech Connect

    Coughlan, S.J.; Hind, G.

    1987-10-06

    Thylakoid membranes were phosphorylated with (..gamma..-/sup 32/P)ATP and extracted with octyl glucoside and cholate. Among the radiolabeled phosphoproteins in the extract was a previously characterized protein kinase of 64-kDa apparent mass. The ability of this enzyme to undergo autophosphorylation in situ was used to monitor its distribution in the membrane. Fractionation studies showed that the kinase is confined to granal regions of the thylakoid, where it appears to be associated with the light-harvesting chlorophyll-protein complex of photosystem II. The kinetics of kinase autophosphorylation were investigated both in situ and in extracted, purified enzyme. In the membrane, autophosphorylation saturated within 20-30 min and was reversed with a half-time of 7-8 min upon removal of ATP or oxidative inactivation of the kinase; the accompanying dephosphorylation of light-harvesting complex was slower and kinetically complex. Fluoride (10 mM) inhibited these dephosphorylations. Autophosphorylation of the isolated kinase was independent of enzyme concentration, indicative of an intramolecular mechanism. A maximum of one serine residue per mole of kinase was esterified. Autophosphorylation was more rapid in the presence of histone IIIs, an exogenous substrate. Dephosphorylation of the isolated enzyme was not observed.

  18. Functionalized self-assembling peptide nanofiber hydrogels mimic stem cell niche to control human adipose stem cell behavior in vitro.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xi; Wang, Xiumei; Wang, Xiujuan; Ren, Hui; He, Jin; Qiao, Lin; Cui, Fu-Zhai

    2013-06-01

    A class of designer functionalized self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffolds developed from self-assembling peptide RADA16-I (AcN-RADARADARADARADA-CONH2) has become increasingly attractive not only for studying spatial behaviors of cells, but also for developing approaches for a wide range of medical applications including regenerative medicine, rapid hemostasis and cell therapy. In this study, we report three functionalized self-assembling peptide hydrogels that serve as a three-dimensional (3-D) artificial microenvironment to control human adipose stem cell (hASC) behavior in vitro. Short peptide motifs SKPPGTSS (bone marrow homing motif), FHRRIKA (heparin-binding motif) and PRGDSGYRGDS (two-unit RGD cell adhesion motif) were used to extend the C-terminus of RADA16-I to obtain functionalized peptides. Atomic force microscopy confirmed the formation of self-assembling nanofibers in the mixture of RADA16-I peptide and functionalized peptides. The behaviors of hASCs cultured in 3-D peptide hydrogels, including migration, proliferation and growth factor-secretion ability, were studied. Our results showed that the functionalized peptide hydrogels were suitable 3-D scaffolds for hASC growth with higher cell proliferation, migration and the secretion of angiogenic growth factors compared with tissue culture plates and pure RADA16-I scaffolds. The present study suggests that these functionalized designer peptide hydrogels not only have promising applications for diverse tissue engineering and regenerative medicine applications as stem cell delivery vehicles, but also could be a biomimetic 3-D system to study nanobiomaterial-stem cell interactions and to direct stem cell behaviors.

  19. Combustion and self-assembly of nanoenergetic materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malchi, Jonathan Yaniv

    The recent worldwide interest in nanotechnology spans a wide variety of scientific fields such as electronics, biology, materials science and medicine. Because of their extremely small dimensions, nanoparticles demonstrate properties different from matter at larger scales. Understanding these unusual properties and utilizing them for macroscale devices is an overall goal for nanotechnology. Moreover, manipulating these small particles into organized structures is crucial for taking full advantage of what nanotechnology has to offer, however it has proven to be a difficult task. Recent work utilizing electrostatic forces shows great potential for the self-assembly of nanoparticles into organized two-dimensional and three-dimensional structures. Overall, this work examines how nanotechnology and self-assembly can benefit the field of energetic materials. Because of aluminum's high energy density and low cost, it has been used in the field of energetic materials for several decades. In order to achieve sufficient energy release rates, aluminum is typically manufactured as a powder having spherical particles with diameters on the micron scale. It is well-known that decreasing the original particle diameter of a fuel particle will increase the burning time and, thus, energy release rate. Therefore, aluminum particles have recently been made to have diameters on the nanoscale, and shown to be advantageous for several applications. The combustion of nanoaluminum (nAl) in various systems is the primary focus of this study. A progression of experiments is used to analyze the combustion of nAl: (1) a fully heterogeneous flame spread system, (2) a semi-homogeneous sonicated thermite system and (3) a quasi-homogeneous self-assembled thermite system. The flame spread experiment physically separates the nAl from the gaseous oxidizer allowing for a well-understood convective, diffusive, reactive system to be analyzed. Because of the simplicity of the experimental setup, variables

  20. Self-assembly of amphiphilic molecules in organic liquids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tung, Shih-Huang

    2007-12-01

    Amphiphilic molecules are well-known for their ability to self-assemble in water to form structures such as micelles and vesicles. In comparison, much less is known about amphiphilic self-assembly in nonpolar organic liquids. Such "reverse" self assembly can produce many of the counterparts to structures found in water. In this dissertation, we focus on the formation and dynamics of such reverse structures. We seek to obtain fundamental insight into the driving forces for reverse self-assembly processes. Three specific types of reverse structures are studied: (a) reverse wormlike micelles, i.e., long, flexible micellar chains; (b) reverse vesicles, i.e., hollow containers enclosed by reverse bilayers; and (c) organogel networks. While our focus is on the fundamentals, we note that reverse structures can be useful in a variety of applications ranging from drug delivery, controlled release, hosts for enzymatic reactions, and templates for nanomaterials synthesis. In the first part of this study, we describe a new route for forming reverse wormlike micelles in nonpolar organic liquids. This route involves the addition of trace amounts of a bile salt to solutions of the phospholipid, lecithin. We show that bile salts, due to their unique "facially amphiphilic" structure, can promote the aggregation of lecithin molecules into these reverse micellar chains. The resulting samples are viscoelastic and show interesting rheological properties. Unusual trends are seen in the temperature dependence of their rheology, which indicates the importance of hydrogen-bonding interactions in the formation of these micelles. Another remarkable feature of their rheology is the presence of strain-stiffening, where the material becomes stiffer at high deformations. Strain-stiffening has been seen before for elastic gels of biopolymers; here, we demonstrate the same properties for viscoelastic micellar solutions. The second reverse aggregate we deal with is the reverse vesicle. We present a