A Caltech Library Service

Conforming nanoparticle sheets to surfaces with Gaussian curvature

Mitchell, Noah P. and Carey, Remington L. and Hannah, Jelani and Wang, Yifan and Cortes Ruiz, Maria and McBride, Sean P. and Lin, Xiao-Min and Jaeger, Heinrich M. (2018) Conforming nanoparticle sheets to surfaces with Gaussian curvature. Soft Matter, 14 (45). pp. 9107-9117. ISSN 1744-683X. doi:10.1039/c8sm01640b.

[img] PDF - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.

[img] Video (MPEG) (Supplementary movie) - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.

[img] Video (MPEG) (Supplementary movie) - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.

[img] Video (MPEG) (Supplementary movie) - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Nanoparticle monolayer sheets are ultrathin inorganic–organic hybrid materials that combine highly controllable optical and electrical properties with mechanical flexibility and remarkable strength. Like other thin sheets, their low bending rigidity allows them to easily roll into or conform to cylindrical geometries. Nanoparticle monolayers not only can bend, but also cope with strain through local particle rearrangement and plastic deformation. This means that, unlike thin sheets such as paper or graphene, nanoparticle sheets can much more easily conform to surfaces with complex topography characterized by non-zero Gaussian curvature, like spherical caps or saddles. Here, we investigate the limits of nanoparticle monolayers’ ability to conform to substrates with Gaussian curvature by stamping nanoparticle sheets onto lattices of larger polystyrene spheres. Tuning the local Gaussian curvature by increasing the size of the substrate spheres, we find that the stamped sheet morphology evolves through three characteristic stages: from full substrate coverage, where the sheet extends over the interstices in the lattice, to coverage in the form of caps that conform tightly to the top portion of each sphere and fracture at larger polar angles, to caps that exhibit radial folds. Through analysis of the nanoparticle positions, obtained from scanning electron micrographs, we extract the local strain tensor and track the onset of strain-induced dislocations in the particle arrangement. By considering the interplay of energies for elastic and plastic deformations and adhesion, we construct arguments that capture the observed changes in sheet morphology as Gaussian curvature is tuned over two orders of magnitude.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Mitchell, Noah P.0000-0003-1922-8470
Carey, Remington L.0000-0003-2727-2770
Wang, Yifan0000-0001-9965-9777
Lin, Xiao-Min0000-0002-2879-3474
Additional Information:© 2018 The Royal Society of Chemistry. Received 10th August 2018, Accepted 10th October 2018, First published on 11th October 2018. We thank Anton Souslov, Vincenzo Vitelli, and William Irvine for useful discussions. This work was supported by the Office of Naval Research under award ONR-N00014-17-1-2342 and by the National Science Foundation under award DMR-1508110. Additional support was provided by the University of Chicago Materials Research Science and Engineering Center, which is funded by National Science Foundation under award number DMR-1420709. Use of the Center for Nanoscale Materials was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, under Contract No. DE-AC02-06CH11357. There are no conflicts of interest to declare.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Office of Naval Research (ONR)N00014-17-1-2342
Department of Energy (DOE)DE-AC02-06CH11357
Issue or Number:45
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20181212-142936491
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:91738
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:12 Dec 2018 22:38
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 03:43

Repository Staff Only: item control page