(728b) Open Crystals from Triblock Janus Colloids

Reinhart, W. F., Princeton University
Panagiotopoulos, A. Z., Princeton University
Triblock Janus colloids, which are colloidal spheres decorated with attractive patches at each pole, have recently generated significant interest as potential building blocks for self-assembled colloidal crystals. Specifically, their inherent anisotropy is known to induce self-assembly into open structures at moderate temperatures and pressures, where they are stabilized over close-packed crystals by entropic effects, and over the fluid phase by enthalpic ones. We use molecular simulations and free energy calculations to study the self-assembly of the triblock Janus particles in three dimensions. We discuss the complex interplay between competing forces which drive the system to form open crystals and elucidate some fundamental design rules for open colloidal crystals.