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Metal Nanoparticles, Organization & Applications of

  1. Günter Schmid

Published Online: 15 MAR 2006

DOI: 10.1002/0470862106.ia305

Encyclopedia of Inorganic Chemistry

Encyclopedia of Inorganic Chemistry

How to Cite

Schmid, G. 2006. Metal Nanoparticles, Organization & Applications of. Encyclopedia of Inorganic Chemistry. .

Author Information

  1. University of Duisburg-Essen, Essen, Germany

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 MAR 2006


The need to organize metal nanoparticles in three, two, or one dimension(s) is linked with their properties, the use of which is only possible if they are organized. The most important properties of nonmagnetic and magnetic metal nanoparticles are therefore briefly discussed. Organization in three dimensions (3D) may happen by naturally happening crystallization processes or by linking the particles with the help of spacer molecules of various length and composition. 3D organized metal particles are quite well investigated and electron transport between the building blocks is satisfyingly understood. 2D arrangements result either by spontaneous self-assembly from solution on appropriate supports, by guided self-assembly, supporting the organization process, for instance, by means of pressure (Langmuir–Blodgett) or pre-prepared surfaces, or the most attractive kind of organization, the aimed one, since it results in artificial structures that would be necessary if nanoparticles should find application in future nanodevices. Two routes to aimed structures have become known up to now: the dip-pen nanolithography and the nanoelectrical modification of surfaces. Dip-pen nanolithography uses the transport of special molecules from a moving AFM tip to suited surfaces. Chemical modifications of as-prepared structures end up with formation of aimed patterns of metal nanoparticles. Nanoelectrical modification of CH3-terminated surfaces, also using an AFM tip, give COOH functions that can further be modified to bind metal nanoparticles. Architectures performed by one of these methods simply depend on the software the AFM is moving on the surfaces.


  • single electron tunnelling;
  • magnetism;
  • 3D;
  • 2D;
  • 1D organization;
  • dip-pen nanolithography;
  • nanoelectrical oxidation