Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science




Dr. Mark S. Workentin


In recent decades, gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) have been pushed to the forefront of nanomaterial research because of unique size-dependent physical, chemical and biological properties. As a result, proper surface functionalization would enable control over these desirable properties for potential applications in biomedicine, electronics or catalysis. Over the past few years, the Workentin research group has developed a toolbox of sophisticated methods for the functionalization of small (1-5 nm) AuNP systems by designing functional AuNP templates. These templates are easy to synthesize and can be used to effectively incorporate functionality on the AuNP surface using click and bioorthogonal interfacial chemistry. In this thesis I present the development of a novel ortho-naphthoquinone methide (oNQM) modified AuNP template that will allow for unprecedented photochemical spatial and temporal control of reactivity. I also present the first steps towards the development of an innovative large AuNP (> 10 nm) template to expand the scope of interfacial functionalization and exploit their interesting optical properties.