Twin Pathways: Discerning the Origins of Multiply Twinned Colloidal Nanoparticles

Jingshan S. Du, Wenjie Zhou, Sara M. Rupich, Chad A. Mirkin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The structure of multiply twinned particles (MTPs) provides an example of how specific crystallographic features dictate the geometric shape of finite-sized crystals. The formation of MTPs during colloidal synthesis can occur through at least two different pathways: 1) growth from multiply twinned seeds or 2) the stepwise formation of new twin boundaries on single-crystalline seeds (either by particle overgrowth or multiparticle attachment). By utilizing in situ transmission electron microscopy, recent studies have provided real-time evidence for both pathways. Looking forward, the knowledge of specific evolution pathways that occur under a given synthetic condition will aid in the design of robust MTP syntheses. More importantly, further studies pertaining to the structural evolution and energetics of nanoparticles are needed to provide a complete understanding of MTP formation pathways.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6858-6863
Number of pages6
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number13
StatePublished - Mar 22 2021


  • crystal growth
  • electron microscopy
  • multiply twinned particles
  • nanoparticles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)

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