Formation of One-Dimensional Capped ZnO Nanoparticle Assemblies at the Air/Water Interface

The self-assembling behavior and microscopic structure of zinc oxide nanoparticle Langmuir−Blodgett monolayer films were investigated for the case of zinc oxide nanoparticles coated with a hydrophobic layer of dodecanethiol. Evolution of nanoparticle film structure as a function of surface pressure (π) at the air−water interface was monitored in situ using Brewster’s angle microscopy, where it was determined that π = 16 mN/m produced near-defect-free monolayer films. Transmission electron micrographs of drop-cast and Langmuir−Schaefer deposited films of the dodecanethiol-coated zinc oxide nanoparticles revealed that the nanoparticle preparation method yielded a microscopic structure that consisted of one-dimensional rodlike assemblies of nanoparticles with typical dimensions of 25 × 400 nm, encased in the organic dodecanethiol layer. These nanoparticle-containing rodlike micelles were aligned into ordered arrangements of parallel rods using the Langmuir−Blodgett technique.