We investigate the self-assembly of crystals from reconfigurable colloidal building blocks. The building blocks possess the unique ability, inspired by recent experiments, to continuously alter their shape before, during, and after assembly. Using molecular simulations, we report the assembly of a reconfigurable degenerate crystal containing a fractionally filled kagome sublattice. We show that this degenerate crystal differs from, and assembles more easily than, its counterpart known for rigid dimers. We further report that the reconfigurable crystal has unique mechanical properties under shear strain compared to a crystal comprised of rigid building blocks. We find that even a small amount of reconfigurability in an assembly of otherwise rigid building blocks can greatly affect mechanical properties.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Physical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics|
|State||Published - Mar 13 2013|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
- Statistics and Probability
- Condensed Matter Physics