Direct visualization of compartementalization in adaptive microgels using liquid-cell TEM

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Researchers at RWTH Aachen University, DWI − Leibniz-Institute for Interactive Materials and theHelmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie have used Hummingbird Scientific’s liquid TEM platform to visualize  compartementalization in adaptive microgels.  They recently presented their findings in Nano-letters.

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Copyright © 2016 American Chemical Society

Compartmentalization in soft materials is important for segregating and coordinating chemical reactions as well as  sequestering (re)active components. The authors show the direct visualization of different compartments within adaptive microgels using a combination of in-situ electron and fluorescence microscopy.  By acquiring an unprecedented levels of structural details they address the challenge of reconstructing 3D information from 2D projections for nonuniform soft matter as opposed to monodisperse proteins. They also show the thermally induced shrinkage of responsive core–shell microgels in water. Applying the methods used in this work more broadly open doors for in-situ studies of soft matter systems and their application as smart materials.

3D Structures of Responsive Nanocompartmentalized Microgels

Arjan P. H. Gelissen, Alex Oppermann, Tobias Caumanns, Pascal Hebbeker, Sarah K. Turnhoff, Rahul Tiwari§, Sabine Eisold, Ulrich Simon, Yan Lu, Joachim Mayer, Walter Richtering, Andreas Walther§, and Dominik Wöll*
Institute of Physical Chemistry, RWTH Aachen University, Landoltweg 2, D-52056 Aachen, Germany
GFE Central Facility for Electron Microscopy, RWTH Aachen University, Mies-van-der-Rohe-Straße 59, D-52074 Aachen, Germany
§ DWI − Leibniz-Institute for Interactive Materials, Forckenbeckstraße 50, D-52074 Aachen, Germany
Institute of Inorganic Chemistry, RWTH Aachen University, Landoltweg 1, D-52056 Aachen, Germany
Soft Matter and Functional Materials, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie, Hahn-Meitner-Platz 1, D-14109 Berlin, Germany
Nano Lett., 2016, 16 (11), pp 7295–7301
DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.6b03940
Copyright © 2016 American Chemical Society

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