Authors: L. Qi, A. Sehgal, J.-C. Castaing, J. Fresnais, J.-F. Berret, J.-P. Chapel
Affilation: Rhodia/CNRS joint Institution, United States
Pages: 685 - 688
Keywords: nanoparticle, nanopowder, cerium oxide, PEG, phosphonate, adsorption, non stoichiometric, redispersible
Rare earth cerium oxide (ceria) nanoparticles are stabilized using end-functional phosphonated-PEG oligomers. The complexation process and structure of the resulting hybrid core-shell singlet nanocolloids are described, characterized and modeled using light and neutron scattering data. The adsorption mechanism is non-stoichiometric, yielding the number of adsorbed chains per particle Nads = 270 at saturation. Adsorption isotherms show a high affinity of the phosphonate head for the ceria surface (adsorption energy ~ -16 kT) suggesting an electrostatic driving force for the complexation. The ease, efficiency and integrity of thecomplexation is highlighted by the formation of nanometric sized cerium oxide particles covered with a well anchored PEG layer, maintaining the characteristics of the original sol This solvating brush-like layer is sufficient to solubilize the particles and greatly expand the stability range of the original sol (< pH 3) up to pH = 9. We underscore three key attributes of the tailored sol: i) strong UV absorption capability after functionalization and ii) ability to redisperse after freeze-drying as powder in aqueous or organic solvents in varying concentrations as singlet nanocolloids iii) interfacial activity of the functionalized particles. This robust platform enables translation of intrinsic properties of mineral oxide nanoparticles to critical end use.