Freestanding Nanoparticle Films

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Prof. Dickerson has been featured in a recent article, entitled BNL's James Dickerson: facilitating nanotechnology.  Check it out!

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Prof. Dickerson just recently Guest Edited the Journal of the Electrochemical Society’s Focus Issue on Electrophoretic Deposition (  This collection of articles on EPD features many of the cutting-edge trends in the field.

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Monolayer Ticker

A new article on nanoparticle monolayer formation, led by Alex Krejci, was published in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces.

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Shalom and Jyotishka have had their manuscript on electrochemical separation of carbon nanotube films published by the Journal of the Electrochemical Society. Congratulations Jyotishka and Shalom!

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Our article on iron oxide nanoparticle monolayer formation by electrophoretic deposition was published by ACS Materials and Interfaces.

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Hardcover versions of Electrophoretic Deposition of Nanomaterials can be accessed via the 'Read Article' link below.

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The Spring 2012 MRS Conference was a great success.  Prof. Dickerson presented an Invited Talk on our Rare Earth Nanoparticles.  He also will be the Editor of the YY:Rare-Earth-Materials Section of the MRS Conference Proceedings.

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Article on graphene oxide films published in ACS Nano.

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Weidong He has finished his PhD with us. Congratulations, Weidong, and best of luck at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory!

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Dr. Suseela Somarajan successfully defends her PhD dissertation. Congratulations Suseela!


Prof. Dickerson is awarded a National Science Foundation CAREER Award!

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Is it possible to collect an ensemble of nanoparticles and to engender strong enough particle-particle interactions among them to give rise to macroscopic adhesion among the particles?  In other words, can one make a macroscopic, centimeter-sized structure of nanoparticles without the presence of a glue, scaffold, or cross-linker to maintain adhesion among the nano-constituents?  My group addresses this question by fabricating freestanding, self-supporting films of nanoparticles that are comprised solely of colloidally synthesized nanoparticles.  Thus, no binding agents or mediators are present to maintain the integrity or strength of the film.

Major Achievements:

Freestanding, all-nanoparticle films without the use of glues, binding agents, or scaffolds.  This research is the subject of a patent application.


This research was featured in Small Times, Semiconductor International, Science Daily, Nanotechnology Now, The Science Blog, and Vanderbilt Explorations

Detailed Discussion:

One of the challenges to implement nanoparticles (NPs) and nanoparticle films into device applications is incorporating the films into systems (circuitry architectures, substrate configurations, etc.) that exploit their properties.  The term nanoparticle refers collectively to a variety of nanoscale objects, including nanocrystals (NCs) and anisotropic nanoscale objects (such as nanotubes). Our approach is to develop a versatile nanoparticulate casting system, which creates freestanding, macroscopic films comprised exclusively of nanoparticles that are free of an underlying substrate.  Nanoparticulate films can be produced in a rapid, repeatable format for applications like chemical sensors and flexible video displays.  This research may be the first step toward new low-cost processes for the on-demand fabrication of nanoparticle films due to the shorter cycle time of EPD relative to other methods.  We rely on strong particle-particle interactions, primarily from van der Waals, dipole-dipole, steric, and Coulomb forces, because of the small inter-nanoparticle separation engendered by EPD, to maintain the structural integrity of the films before, during, and after liberation from the underlying substrate.

Reference Articles:

a. Jyotishka Biswas, Jaron Rottman-Yang, Isabel Gonzalo-Juan, and James H. Dickerson, Freestanding Carbon Nanotube Films Fabricated By Post-Electrophoretic Deposition Electrochemical Separation,Journal of the Electrochemical Society 159, K103, 2012.

b. S.A. Hasan, D.W. Kavich, and J.H. Dickerson, Sacrificial layer electrophoretic deposition of free-standing multilayered nanoparticle filmsChemical Communications 25, 3723, 2009.

c. S.A. Hasan, S.V. Mahajan, D. W. Kavich, and J. H. DickersonElectrophoretic Deposition of CdSe Nanocrystal Films Onto Dielectric Polymer Thin FilmsThin Solid Films, 517, 2665-2669, 2009.

© Copyright 2023 by James H. Dickerson II.

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