Molecular Self-Assembly – University of Copenhagen

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X-Ray and Neutron Science > Research > Molecular Self-Assembly

Molecular Self-Assembly

The X-Ray and Neutron Science Section works within a variety of projects related to molecular self-assembly.

Molecular self-assembly is a key concept in molecular materials, where assembly of molecules is directed through non-covalent interactions like hydrophobic forces, hydrogen bonding and van der Waals forces. Common examples include the formation of micelles, monolayers and bilayer membranes of surfactant molecules, vesicles and liquid crystals. Molecular self-assembly allows the construction of challenging molecular topologies, including bi- and tri-continuous cubic phases demonstrated in synthetic molecular systems, and more recently observed in biology. Molecular selfassembly also includes the formation of complex assemblies of lipids and proteins.

Projects include:

  • Experiments, Theory, Simulations
  • Low molar mass and polymeric surfactants
  • Polymer and surfactant dynamics
  • Micelles: Form, size,  interaction and ordering phenomena
  • Micellar gels and networks
  • Block copolymers and Mikto-arm melts and solutions
  • Phase behavior,
  • Response and stability versus strain and stress
  • Lipid Membranes and Nano-discs
  • Lipid-Protein Interaction

The concept of molecular selfassembly concern simple micelles, complex biomolecular assemblies (nanodisc), macromolecular association into mesoscale order, as shown in the molecular simulation and experimental phase diagram.

For further information, contact Kell Mortensen kell@nbi.dk