Rich complex behaviour of self-assembled nanoparticles far from equilibrium

Date
2017
Editor(s)
Advisor
Supervisor
Co-Advisor
Co-Supervisor
Instructor
Source Title
Nature Communications
Print ISSN
Electronic ISSN
2041-1723
Publisher
Nature Publishing Group
Volume
8
Issue
Pages
1-10
Language
English
Type
Article
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Series
Abstract

A profoundly fundamental question at the interface between physics and biology remains open: what are the minimum requirements for emergence of complex behaviour from nonliving systems? Here, we address this question and report complex behaviour of tens to thousands of colloidal nanoparticles in a system designed to be as plain as possible: the system is driven far from equilibrium by ultrafast laser pulses that create spatiotemporal temperature gradients, inducing Marangoni flow that drags particles towards aggregation; strong Brownian motion, used as source of fluctuations, opposes aggregation. Nonlinear feedback mechanisms naturally arise between flow, aggregate and Brownian motion, allowing fast external control with minimal intervention. Consequently, complex behaviour, analogous to those seen in living organisms, emerges, whereby aggregates can self-sustain, self-regulate, self-replicate, self-heal and can be transferred from one location to another, all within seconds. Aggregates can comprise only one pattern or bifurcated patterns can coexist, compete, endure or perish.

Course
Other identifiers
Book Title
Citation
Published Version (Please cite this version)