Size controlled Preparation of Nanoparticles and safe-to-handle Nanoparticle Dispersions by the use of Ionic Liquids
Ionic Liquids (ILs) are a new class of materials, consisting entirely of ions, which are liquid at unusual low temperatures1. Typical structural motifs combine organic cations with inorganic or, more rarely, organic anions. The lower symmetry of the cations or anions and the delocalisation of the charge over larger parts of the ions by resonance are mainly responsible for the low melting points of ionic liquids. The manifold combinations of cations and anions provide a large number of liquid materials with (tunable) unique properties such as high conductivity, high thermal stability, negligible vapor pressure, non-flammability, good solubility of many inorganic precursor salts as a consequence of the tunable polarity of ILs and their tenside like character. As a consequence, this unique combination of properties makes ILs - among many other different applications - the media of choice for synthesis and dispersing nanoparticles.