Liquid crystal nanoscience & soft self-assembly

Soft matter and liquid crystals

Giesselmann group

Carbon nanotube in a lyotropic nematic liquid crystal formed by oblate micelles
Simultaneous dispersion and alignment of a carbon nanotube (black) in a lyotropic nematic liquid crystal formed by oblate micelles (red) of amphiphilic molecules. [J. Lagerwall, Advanced Materials 19, 359 (2007).]

Liquid crystal nanoscience & soft self-assembly

The emerging field of liquid crystal nanoscience crosses the borders between classic liquid crystal research and nanotechnology. Examples are the liquid-crystalline phase behavior of nanoparticle dispersions, the self-assembly and alignment of nanomaterials in liquid-crystalline media, and the synthesis of nanomaterials by using liquid crystals as ‘templates’ or ‘precursors’ [H. K. Bisoyi, S. Kumar, Chem. Soc. Rev. 40, 306 (2011)].

During the last years our group together with Siegmar Roth’s group at the Max Planck Institute of Solid State Research pioneered the simultaneous dispersion and alignment of single-wall carbon nanotubes in water-based lyotropic liquid crystals. In close collaboration with Rudolf Zentel (Mainz) and Jan P. F. Lagerwall (now Seoul National University) we recently contributed to studies on the microfluidic synthesis of liquid crystal elastomer particles.

Selected Publications

One-piece micropumps from liquid crystalline core-shell particles
E. K. Fleischmann, H. L. Liang, N. Kapernaum, F. Giesselmann, J. Lagerwall, R. Zentel, Nature Communications 3, 1178 (2012).
DOI: 10.1038/ncomms2193

Microfluidic Synthesis of Highly Shape-Anisotropic Particles from Liquid Crystalline Elastomers with Defined Director Field Configurations
C. Ohm, N. Kapernaum, D. Nonnenmacher, F. Giesselmann, C. Serra, R. Zentel,
Journal of the American Chemical Society 133, 5305-5311 (2011). DOI: 10.1021/ja1095254

Nanotube alignment using lyotropic liquid crystals
J. Lagerwall, G. Scalia, M. Haluska, U. Dettlaff-Weglikowska, S. Roth, and F. Giesselmann, Advanced Materials 19, 359-364 (2007). DOI: 10.1002/adma.200600889


This image shows Frank Gießelmann

Frank Gießelmann

Prof. Dr.


This image shows Nadia Kapernaum

Nadia Kapernaum


Senior Scientist

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