Transition of Dielectrophoresis-Assembled 2D Crystals to Interlocking Structures under a Magnetic Field

Zhuoqiang Jia, Jae Hyun Kim, Gi Ra Yi, Stephanie S. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aspherical cubic hematite colloids with cylindrical arms protruding from each face, referred to as "hexapods", were assembled via negative dielectrophoresis and then manipulated using an applied magnetic field. Upon application of an ac electric field, the hexapods aligned in close-packed linear chains parallel to the field direction. The chains then aggregated to the center of the device, with adjacent chains separated by distances approximately equal to twice the arm length. The resulting open packing structure exhibited cmm plane group symmetry due to the obstruction of arms, with a high density of incorporated defects. Subsequent application of a magnetic field to the dielectrophoresis (DEP)-assembled structure was found to anneal the colloidal crystal by reorienting the hexapods to align their intrinsic magnetic dipoles with the magnetic field direction. During reorganization, the colloidal packing density was found to decrease by more than 10% at both the center and edges of the crystal, accompanied by a significant loss of ordering, prior to redensification of the 2D lattice with fewer defects. Reorganization at the edge was 1.5 times faster than at the center, consistent with the need for cooperative colloidal motion to remove defects at the centers of the crystals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12412-12418
Number of pages7
Issue number41
StatePublished - Oct 16 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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