Skip to main content Accessibility help

The True Liquid Crystal Approach to Mesoporous Silica

  • George S. Attard (a1), Mark Edgar (a2), James W. Emsley (a1) and Christine G. Göltner (a3)


Liquid crystalline phases, consisting of nonionic surfactant and water, are exploited as templates for the synthesis of inorganic nanostructures In this approach the aqueous domains of a lyotropic liquid crystal phase function as a confining medium, in which the polymerisation of a watersoluble precursor takes place without destroying the nanostructure. Conducting the prepration of mesoporous silica in a lyotropic liquid crystal phase has considerable advantages over previous routes towards mesoporous ceramic oxides. (i) The nanostructure of the solid can be predicted a priori by knowing the phase structure of the liquid crystal before solidification, (ii) this approach allows the use of nonionic surfactants as templates, (iii) the progress of the reaction can be observed by a variety of methods, such as polarised light optical microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and deuterium NMR spectroscopy, all of which are noninvasive. The synthesis and a new way of monitoring the temporal evolution of the inorganic nanostructure using deuterium NMR spectroscopy are described. The results show unambiguously that the lyotropic liquid crystal phase acts as a template for the nanostructure.



Hide All
[1] a) Kresge, C. T., Leonowicz, M. E., Roth, W. J., Vartuli, J. C., Beck, J. S:, Nature 359, 710712 (1992); b) J. S. Beck, J. C. Vartuli, W. J. Roth, M. E. Leonowicz, C. T. Kresge, K. D. Schmitt, C. T.-W. Chu, E. W. Sheppard, S. B. McCullen, J. B. Higgins, J. L. Schlenker, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 114, 10834–10843 (1992).
[2] Monnier, A., Schüth, F., Huo, Q., Kumar, D., Margolese, D., Maxwell, R. S., Stucky, G. D., Krishnamurty, M., Petroff, P., Firouzi, A., Janicke, M., Chmelka, B. F., Science 261, 12991303 (1993).
[3] Cheng, C-F., Luan, Z., Klinowski, J., Langmuir 11 (1995).
[4] Steel, A., Carr, S. W., Anderson, M. W., J Chem. Soc., Chem. Commun. (1994).
[5] Bagshaw, S. A., Prouzet, E., Pinnavaia, T. J., Science, 269, 242244 (1995).
[6] Attard, G. S., Glyde, J. C., Göltner, C. G., Nature 378, 366368 (1995).
[7] Mitchell, D. J., Tiddy, G. J. T., Waring, L., Bostock, T., McDonald, M. P., J. Chem. Soc. Faraday Trans. 79 9751000 (1983).
[8] a) Chen, K. C., Tsuchiya, T., Mackenzie, J. D., J non-cryst. Solids 81, 227237 (1986); b) J. D. Mackenzie, J. non-cryst. Solids 100, 162–168 (1988).


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed