Gold nanotriangles decorated with superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles: a compositional and microstructural study
The combination of iron oxide and gold in a single nanoparticle results in both magnetic and plasmonic properties that can stimulate novel applications in bio-sensing, medical imaging, or therapeutics. Microwave assisted heating allows the fabrication of multi-component, multi-functional nanostructures by promoting selective heating at desired sites. Recently, we reported a microwave-assisted polyol route yielding gold nanotriangles decorated with iron oxide nanoparticles. Here, we present an in-depth microstructural and compositional characterization of the system using scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) and electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS). A method to remove the iron oxide nanoparticles from the gold nanocrystals and some insights on crystal nucleation and growth mechanisms are also provided.