Annealing cycles and the self-organization of functionalized colloids

  title={Annealing cycles and the self-organization of functionalized colloids},
  author={Crist{\'o}v{\~a}o S Dias and Nuno A. M. Ara{\'u}jo and Margarida Maria Telo da Gama},
  journal={Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter},
The self-assembly of functionalized (patchy) particles with directional interactions into target structures is still a challenge, despite the significant experimental advances in their synthesis. Self-assembly pathways are typically characterized by high energy barriers that hinder access to stable (equilibrium) structures. A possible strategy to tackle this challenge is to perform annealing cycles. By periodically switching on and off the inter-particle bonds, one expects to smooth-out the… 
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The first observation of empty liquids and equilibrium gels in a complex colloidal clay is reported, and numerical simulations support the experimental findings with numerical simulations.

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