Self-Assembly of Precision Noble Metal Nanoclusters: Hierarchical Structural Complexity, Colloidal Superstructures, and Applications

Jose V. Rival, Paloli Mymoona, Kavalloor Murali Lakshmi, Nonappa Nonappa, Thalappil Pradeep, Edakkattuparambil Sidharth Shibu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleScientificpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Ligand protected noble metal nanoparticles are excellent building blocks for colloidal self-assembly. Metal nanoparticle self-assembly offers routes for a wide range of multifunctional nanomaterials with enhanced optoelectronic properties. The emergence of atomically precise monolayer thiol-protected noble metal nanoclusters has overcome numerous challenges such as uncontrolled aggregation, polydispersity, and directionalities faced in plasmonic nanoparticle self-assemblies. Because of their well-defined molecular compositions, enhanced stability, and diverse surface functionalities, nanoclusters offer an excellent platform for developing colloidal superstructures via the self-assembly driven by surface ligands and metal cores. More importantly, recent reports have also revealed the hierarchical structural complexity of several nanoclusters. In this review, the formulation and periodic self-assembly of different noble metal nanoclusters are focused upon. Further, self-assembly induced amplification of physicochemical properties, and their potential applications in molecular recognition, sensing, gas storage, device fabrication, bioimaging, therapeutics, and catalysis are discussed. The topics covered in this review are extensively associated with state-of-the-art achievements in the field of precision noble metal nanoclusters.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2005718
Number of pages33
Issue number27
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Publication typeA2 Review article in a scientific journal


  • colloidal superstructures
  • enhanced optical properties
  • hierarchical structural complexity
  • nanoscale driving forces
  • precision nanoclusters
  • self-assembly

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 2

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biomaterials
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)


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