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Synthesis and Chiroptical Study of d/l-Penicillamine-Capped Silver Nanoclusters

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journal contribution
posted on 29.05.2007, 00:00 by Naoki Nishida, Hiroshi Yao, Tomoyasu Ueda, Akito Sasaki, Keisaku Kimura
We report the synthesis and chiroptical properties of silver nanocluster enantiomers. The surface of the silver nanoclusters is covered with l/d-penicillamine or their racemate. The clusters are separated by gel electrophoresis according to their charge and size into well-defined compounds. The mean core diameter of each fractioned component varies from 1 to 3 nm. The separated compounds of silver nanoclusters covered with l- or d-form thiol show strong optical activity or circular dichroism with opposite sign (mirror image relationship) in the metal-based electronic transitions (obtained anisotropy factor is on the order of 1 × 10-3 to 1 × 10-5), suggesting that the nanoclusters have well-defined stereostructures as common chiral molecules do. With a decrease in the mean cluster diameter, the anisotropy factor gradually increases at first, but a steep rise is observed when the diameter becomes smaller than ∼1.5 nm. The chiroptical response of the silver nanoclusters is consequently several-fold larger than that of the gold nanoclusters having the same ligand. The possibilities of a dissymmetric field model as well as an inherently chiral core model are discussed as the origin of the intense optical activity.