Synthesis of spherical polymer and titania photonic crystallites

Sascha M. Klein, Vinothan N. Manoharan, David J. Pine, Fred F. Lange

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The fabrication of small structured spherical particles that are essentially small photonic crystals is described. The particles are 1-50 μm in diameter and are porous with nearly close-packed monodisperse pores whose size is comparable to the wavelength of light. The solid matrix of the particles is titania, which provides a large refractive index contrast between the particle matrix and pores. The particles are made by encapsulating polymer colloidal particles in emulsion droplets of hexanes in which a titanium alkoxide precursor is dissolved. Subsequent osmotic removal of the hexanes from the droplets and condensation of the alkoxide precursor leads to spherical aggregates of polymer spheres with titania filling the spaces between the polymer spheres. The polymer particles are then burned out leaving behind the desired porous titania particles. The size and structure of the pores and high refractive index of the titania matrix are expected to produce particles that are very efficient scatterers of light, making them useful as pigments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6669-6674
Number of pages6
Issue number15
StatePublished - Jul 19 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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