The mixed-electrode concept for understanding growth and aggregation behavior of metal nanoparticles in colloidal solution
The growth and aggregation behavior of metal nanoparticles can be modulated by surfactants and different other additives. Here the concept of how open-circuit mixed electrodes helps to understand the electrical aspects of nanoparticle growth and the consequences for the particle geometries is discussed. A key issue is the self-polarization effect of non-spherical metal nanoparticles, which causes a local decoupling of anodic and partial processes and asymmetry in the local rates of metal deposition. These asymmetries can contribute to deciding to the growth of particles with high aspect ratios. The interpretation of electrochemical reasons for particle growth and behavior is supported by experimental results of nanoparticle syntheses supported by microfluidics which can supply high yields of non-spherical nanoparticles and colloidal product solutions of high homogeneity.