Hidden geometries in networks arising from cooperative self-assembly
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Multilevel self-assembly involving small structured groups of nano-particles provides new routes to development of functional materials with a sophisticated architecture. Apart from the inter-particle forces, the geometrical shapes and compatibility of the building blocks are decisive factors. Therefore, a comprehensive understanding of these processes is essential for the design of assemblies of desired properties. Here, we introduce a computational model for cooperative self-assembly with the simultaneous attachment of structured groups of particles, which can be described by simplexes (connected pairs, triangles, tetrahedrons and higher order cliques) to a growing network. The model incorporates geometric rules that provide suitable nesting spaces for the new group and the chemical affinity of the system to accept excess particles. For varying chemical affinity, we grow different classes of assemblies by binding the cliques of distributed sizes. Furthermore, we characterize the emer...gent structures by metrics of graph theory and algebraic topology of graphs, and 4-point test for the intrinsic hyperbolicity of the networks. Our results show that higher Q-connectedness of the appearing simplicial complexes can arise due to only geometric factors and that it can be efficiently modulated by changing the chemical potential and the polydispersity of the binding simplexes.
Source:Scientific Reports, 2018, 8
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- Slovenian Research Agency [P1-0044]