, Volume 7, Issue 2-3, pp 209-217

On the formation of protected gold nanoparticles from AuCl 4 by the reduction using aromatic amines

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Abstract

Amines are used extensively as reductants and subsequent capping agents in the synthesis of metal nanoparticles, especially gold, due to its affinity to nitrogen. Taking 2-methyl aniline as an example, we show that metal reduction is followed by polymerization of the amine, while part of it covers the nanoparticle surface another fraction deposits in the solution. It is found that the oxidative polymerization of the amine goes in step with the formation of gold nanoparticles. The gold nanoparticles thus formed have a mean diameter of 20 nm. The polymerized amine encapsulates the gold nanoparticle forming a robust shell of about 5 nm thickness, making the gold core inert towards mineralizing agents such as chloroform, bromoform, sodium cyanide, benzylchloride, etc. which react with the naked gold nanoparticles. The deposited polymer is largely protonated, taking up protons from the medium during its formation. Similar results have been observed in the case of aniline also. The materials have been fully characterized by spectroscopy and microscopy.

This revised version was published online in August 2005 with a corrected issue number.