The effects of gold nanoparticles size and concentration on viscosity, flow activation energy, dielectric and optical properties
This study was carried out to investigate viscosity in relation with the temperature, flow activation energy and dielectric properties for 10, 20 and 50 nm gold nanoparticles size (GNPs) in addition to absorption and fluorescence spectra at different concentrations (0.2 × 10-3 to 1 × 10-2%) in an attempt to cover and understand the toxicity and potential role of their therapeutic and diagnostic use in medical applications. 10, 20 and 50 nm GNPs dissolved in aqueous solution were purchased (Product MKN-Au, Canada) and used in this study. Mechanical parameters were measured using Brookfield LVDV-III Programmable rheometer with temperature bath controlled by a computer. 0.5 ml of each GNP size in aqueous solution was poured in the sample chamber of the rheometer. The spindle was immersed and rotated in these gold nanofluids in the speed range from 50 to 250 rpm in steps of 20 min. Viscosity of GNPs was measured at temperature of 37°C and at a gradually increase of temperature to 42ºC. UV–Visible characterization of GNPs at different concentrations from 0.2 × 10-3 to 1 × 10-2 % was performed using UV-1601 PC, UV-Visible spectrophotometer. The absorbance measurements were made over the wavelength range of 250 to 700 nm using 1 cm path length quartz cuvettes. Fluorescence characterization of GNPs was performed over the wavelength range of 250 to 700 nm using FluoroMax-2 JOBIAN YVON-SPEX. The measured viscosities for all GNP sizes decreased with increasing the temperatures from 37 to 42°C. The GNPs with larger size (50 nm) exhibited higher viscosity values compared with 10 and 20 nm GNPs. The flow activation energies (kJ/mol) for 10, 20 and 50 nm GNPs were 332.55, 415.4 and 182.2 kJ/mol, respectively. The optical properties such as absorption maxima and the absorption intensity are particle size-dependent. The fluorescence emission band for GNPs with an excitation wavelength of 308 nm and photoluminescence (PL) band centre appeared at 408 nm. With the increase of GNPs concentration at a fixed GNP size of 20 nm, the intensity of emission band positioned increased, and the trend was consistent with the changes of the corresponding surface plasmon resonance (SPR) of GNPs. The presented dielectric data indicates that GNPs have strong dielectric dispersion corresponding to the alpha relaxation region in the frequency range of 20 Hz to 100 kHz which was identified as anomalous frequency dispersion. At a constant GNP size, the absorbance was found to be proportional to the concentration of gold. This is due to the increase in the number of GNPs as well as the increase in the SPR of GNPs. An intense absorption peak was observed at wavelength of 517 nm which is generally attributed to the surface plasmon excitation of the small spherical GNPs. The incident light at 308 nm will lead to excitation of the surface plasmon coherent electronic motion as well as the d electrons. This study suggests that the relaxation of these electronic motions followed by the recombination of the sp electrons with holes in the d band leads to the fluorescence emission. These results indicate that the intensity of fluorescence emission band of GNPs was dependent on the concentration of GNPs. A rapid decrease in the dielectric constant may be attributed to the tendency of dipoles in GNPs to orient themselves in the direction of the applied field in the low-frequency range. However, in the high-frequency range, the dipoles will hardly be able to orient themselves in the direction of the applied field and hence the value of the dielectric constant is nearly constant.
Key words: Gold nanoparticles, viscosity, size, temperature, dielectric, absorption, fluorescence.