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Gold Nanoparticles with Perfluorothiolate Ligands

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journal contribution
posted on 01.01.2008, 00:00 by Amala Dass, Rui Guo, Joseph B. Tracy, Ramjee Balasubramanian, Alicia D. Douglas, Royce W. Murray
Two syntheses of gold nanoparticles with fluorinated alkyl and aryl thiolate ligands are reported. The fluorous Au nanoparticles are smaller than previous gold fluor-capped examples, and are in the 44−75 Au atom size range. Fluoroalkyl thiolate-protected (1H,1H,2H,2H-perfluorodecanethiolate) nanoparticles synthesized by a Brust reaction are a mixture of (mainly) ∼8.5 kDa (ca. 44 core atoms) and ∼14 kDa (ca. 75 core atoms) species, by MALDI-mass spectrometry. This composition is consistent with thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) results of the ligand shell composition. 19F NMR spectra display a progressive line broadening of resonances for fluorine sites closer to the Au core. A second synthetic route used a (ligand replacement) reaction of pentafluorobenzenethiol with Au55(PPh3)12Cl6. The exchange is (as previously observed for nonfluorinated thiols) accompanied by nanoparticle core size changes to produce a polydisperse mixture within which a Au75 core species could be electrochemically discerned by its characteristic 0.74 V electrochemical energy gap. Further characterization of the polydisperse nanoparticle product was done by HPLC, TEM, TGA, optical spectroscopy, and NMR data. Both varieties of fluorous nanoparticles exhibit solubilities typical of perfluorinated materials, as opposed to proteo versions.