Laponite Blue: Dissolving the Insoluble

Authors

  • Dr. Marina M. Lezhnina,

    1. Institute for Optical Technologies, Münster University of Applied Sciences, Stegerwaldstrasse 39, 48565 Steinfurt (Germany)
    2. Presently on leave from Mari Technical State University Yoshkar-Ola, Institute of Physics, Lenin-pl. 3, 424000 Yoshkar-Ola (Russia)
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  • Tobias Grewe,

    1. Institute for Optical Technologies, Münster University of Applied Sciences, Stegerwaldstrasse 39, 48565 Steinfurt (Germany)
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  • Dr. Hardo Stoehr,

    1. Institute for Optical Technologies, Münster University of Applied Sciences, Stegerwaldstrasse 39, 48565 Steinfurt (Germany)
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  • Prof. Dr. Ulrich Kynast

    Corresponding author
    1. Institute for Optical Technologies, Münster University of Applied Sciences, Stegerwaldstrasse 39, 48565 Steinfurt (Germany)
    • Institute for Optical Technologies, Münster University of Applied Sciences, Stegerwaldstrasse 39, 48565 Steinfurt (Germany)
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  • M.M.L. and U.K. are greatly indebted to BASF Coatings GmbH, Münster (Germany), for financial support.

Abstract

original image

The neutral organic dye indigo forms an inorganic–organic hybrid material with nanoclays (see picture; blue circles on disks symbolizing indigo, spheres indicating liberated cations) and can thus be transferred into aqueous solution. Solids recovered from these solutions resemble the ancient Maya Blue pigment. The method can also be applied to other hydrophobic species and may open the gate for novel solution chemistry, including photonic and catalytic applications.

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