Layer-by-layer assembly of patchy particles as a route to nontrivial structures
AbstractWe propose a strategy for robust high-quality self-assembly of nontrivial periodic structures out of patchy particles and investigate it with Brownian dynamics simulations. Its first element is the use of specific patch-patch and shell-shell interactions between the particles, which can be implemented through differential functionalization of patched and shell regions with specific DNA strands. The other key element of our approach is the use of a layer-by-layer protocol that allows one to avoid the formation of undesired random aggregates. As an example, we design and self-assemble in silico a version of a double diamond lattice in which four particle types are arranged into bcc crystal made of four fcc sublattices. The lattice can be further converted to cubic diamond by selective removal of the particles of certain types. Our results demonstrate that by combining the directionality, selectivity of interactions, and the layer-by-layer protocol, a high-quality robust self-assembly can be achieved.