Colloidal core-satellite supraparticles via preprogramed burst of nanostructured micro-raspberry particles
Colloidal molecules, or more general supraparticles, i.e., particles which are themselves assembled of smaller nanoparticles in a defined way, are known to be synthesizable via bottom‐up assembly techniques in colloidal dispersion. The amount of synthesizable particles is mostly limited to milligrams. Herein, a bottom‐up‐programed, triggerable top‐down process is reported to obtain core-satellite supraparticles, i.e., particles composed of a larger core particle surrounded by smaller satellite particles. The key is to prepare a nanostructured, microparticulate powder into which defined burst behavior is preprogramed. Once the system is mechanically triggered, it bursts into well‐defined nanosized core-satellite supraparticles. Scale‐up is easily feasible and several hundred grams per batch can be demonstrated. The product is a ready‐to‐use and flexibly processible powder. Upon simple mixing with a polymer, it disintegrates into the preprogramed core-satellite supraparticles, thus forming a highly sophisticated nanocomposite with the polymer matrix. A pure silica nanoparticle system and a silica-iron oxide nanoparticle hybrid system are presented to demonstrate the versatility of the approach. Enhanced mechanical and unexpected magneto‐optical properties with the particle system are found. The disintegration of the microparticles into individual core-satellite colloidal supraparticles is confirmed via in situ liquid cell transmission electron microscopy.