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Open AccessArticle

Assembly of 1D Granular Structures from Sulfonated Polystyrene Microparticles

1
Institute of Acoustics, Faculty of Physics, Adam Mickiewicz University, Umultowska 85, 61-614 Poznań, Poland
2
Faculty of Chemistry, Gdańsk University of Technology, Narutowicza 11/12, 80-233 Gdańsk, Poland
3
NanoBioMedical Centre, Adam Mickiewicz University, Umultowska 85, 61-614 Poznań, Poland
4
Institute of Experimental Physics SAS, Watsonova 47, 040-01 Kosice, Slovakia
5
Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Informatics, Technical University of Košice, Letná 9, 04200 Košice, Slovakia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Materials 2017, 10(10), 1212; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma10101212
Received: 9 October 2017 / Revised: 9 October 2017 / Accepted: 17 October 2017 / Published: 21 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Designed Colloidal Self-Assembly)
Being able to systematically modify the electric properties of nano- and microparticles opens up new possibilities for the bottom-up fabrication of advanced materials such as the fabrication of one-dimensional (1D) colloidal and granular materials. Fabricating 1D structures from individual particles offers plenty of applications ranging from electronic sensors and photovoltaics to artificial flagella for hydrodynamic propulsion. In this work, we demonstrate the assembly of 1D structures composed of individual microparticles with modified electric properties, pulled out of a liquid environment into air. Polystyrene particles were modified by sulfonation for different reaction times and characterized by dielectric spectroscopy and dipolar force measurements. We found that by increasing the sulfonation time, the values of both electrical conductivity and dielectric constant of the particles increase, and that the relaxation frequency of particle electric polarization changes, causing the measured dielectric loss of the particles to shift towards higher frequencies. We attributed these results to water adsorbed at the surface of the particles. With sulfonated polystyrene particles exhibiting a range of electric properties, we showed how the electric properties of individual particles influence the formation of 1D structures. By tuning applied voltage and frequency, we were able to control the formation and dynamics of 1D structures, including chain bending and oscillation. View Full-Text
Keywords: spherical polystyrene particles; microparticles; sulfonation; electric conductivity; dielectric constant; electric fields; field-driven assembly; 1D structures spherical polystyrene particles; microparticles; sulfonation; electric conductivity; dielectric constant; electric fields; field-driven assembly; 1D structures
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mikkelsen, A.; Kertmen, A.; Khobaib, K.; Rajňák, M.; Kurimský, J.; Rozynek, Z. Assembly of 1D Granular Structures from Sulfonated Polystyrene Microparticles. Materials 2017, 10, 1212.

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