Seminar: Prof Wenlong Cheng - Organically-Capped Metal Nanoparticles for Soft Plasmonics, Soft Sensors, Soft Energy Devices and Targeted Theranostics

Thursday, 15 February 2018 - 12:00pm – Thursday, 15 February 2018 - 1:00pm  |  CHEMSCI M11

Speaker: Prof. Wenlong Cheng

In this talk, I will briefly discuss our recent research activities in rational design and applications of organically-capped metal nanoparticles. Monodispersed metal nanoparticles are synthesized with controlled sizes and shapes, which are then modified by soft ligands including DNA, polymer and alkyl molecules. We have successfully applied such soft ‘meta-atoms’ to three major directions: (1) assembling soft plasmonic nanoparticle superlattice sheets (soft plasmene sheets) 1-3; (2) fabricating soft elastic conductors (electronic skins) for wearable sensors4-5; (3) DNA aptamer-targeted and light-controlled drug delivery.

Firstly, I will describe synthesis of soft ‘meta-atoms’ using nanospheres, nanorods, nanocages, nanocubes, and nanowires)1. Secondly, I will discuss how we manipulate the notoriously-difficult-to-manipulate ‘meta-atoms’ to form free-standing thinnest possible superlattice nanosheets2-3, which could be used as a new-class SERS substrate which is soft, elastic and surface-attachable. This enabled the direct chemical identification on topologically complex surfaces such as banknotes and coins, and application as new-generation of anti-counterfeit security labels. Then I will discuss how we apply ultrathin gold nanowires to the design of electronic skin materials for soft wearable sensors enabling the monitoring of biological signals in real-time in-situ in a wireless fashion as well as for soft energy devices (e.g. supercapacitors). Time permitting, I will also briefly mention our recent research on DNA aptamer-targetted plasmonic imaging and therapy. References: 1) Kae Jye Si, Yi Chen and Wenlong Cheng*. Plasmene Origami. Materials Today 2016, 10.1016/j.mattod.2016.05.014. 2) Shawn, J. Tan, Michael J. Campolongo, Dan Luo and Wenlong Cheng*, Building Plasmonic Nanostructures with DNA. Nature Nanotechnology 2011, 6, 268-276. 3) Kae Jye Si, Debabrata Sikdar, Yi Chen, Zaiquan Xu, Yue Tang, Wei Xiong, Pengzhen Guo, Shuang Zhang, Yuerui Lu, Qiaoliang Bao, Weiren Zhu, Malin Premaratne, and Wenlong Cheng*, Giant Plasmene Nanosheets, Nanoribbons, and Origami. ACS Nano, 2014, 8, 11086–11093. 4) Yi Chen, Zi Ouyang, Min Gu and Wenlong Cheng*, Mechanically Strong, Optically Transparent, Giant Metal Superlattice Nanomembranes From Ultrathin Gold Nanowires. Advanced Materials 2013, 25, 80-85. 5) Shu Gong, Willem Schwalb, Yongwei Wang, Yi Chen, Yue Tang, Jye Si, Bijan Shirinzadeh and Wenlong Cheng*, A wearable and highly sensitive pressure sensor with ultrathin gold nanowires. Nature Communications, 2014, 5, 3132.


Biography: Wenlong Cheng is a professor and director of research in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Monash University, Australia. He is also an Ambassador Tech Fellow in Melbourne Centre for Nanofabrication. He earned his PhD from Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2005 and his BS from Jilin University, China in 1999. He held positions in the Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics and the Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering of Cornell University before joining the Monash University in 2010. His research interest lies at the Nano-Bio Interface, particularly plasmonic nanomaterials, DNA nanotechnology, nanoparticle anticancer theranostics and electronic skins. He has published >100 papers including 3 in Nature Nanotech, 1 in Nature Mater and 1 in Nature Comm. He is currently the editor for the Elsevier journal – Inorganic Chemistry Communications, and the editorial board members for a few journals including Cell press journal – iScience.