Nucleation on surfaces and in confinement

Michael L. Whittaker, Patricia M. Dove, Derk Joester

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


A review of recent literature supports the notion that organisms may achieve nanoscale control over the hierarchical assembly of organic-inorganic materials by compartmentalizing reactions into small volumes containing specifically functionalized macromolecules. Such confinement may introduce a degree of determinism to the stochastic process of nucleation by greatly reducing the number of nucleation events, allowing an organism to control nucleation using soft organic substrates. In this way, the polymorph, orientation, shape, and size of a crystalline building block can be selected, and its assembly into a larger structure orchestrated by the organic matrix.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)388-392
Number of pages5
JournalMRS Bulletin
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2016


  • biological synthesis (assembly)
  • nucleation & growth
  • organic
  • phase transformation
  • surface chemistry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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