Palladium nanoparticles encapsulated in magnetically separable polymeric nanoreactors

Ester Weiss, Bishnu Dutta, Yafit Schnell, Raed Abu-Reziq*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


A method for immobilization of palladium nanoparticles in magnetically separable polymeric nanocapsules is presented. The method is based on co-encapsulation of palladium nanoparticles stabilized by hyperbranched polyamidoamine (H-PAMAM-C15) modified with palmitoyl groups and hydrophobic magnetite nanoparticles within polyurea nanospheres. The synthesis of these polyurea nanospheres is based on nanoemulsification of chloroform, containing magnetic nanoparticles and palladium acetate, in water using suitable surfactants or dispersants. Then, the chloroform nano-droplets are confined in a polyurea shell formed by interfacial polycondensation between isocyanate and amine monomers. The palladium acetate was reduced with hydrogen to create palladium nanoparticles dispersed in the core of the polyurea nanocapsules. These catalytic polymeric nanoreactors were utilized in hydrogenation of alkenes and alkynes in water. The nanoreactors were easily separated from the reaction mixture via application of external magnetic field. The recyclability of these nanoreactors was examined in hydrogenation of styrene; no significant change was observed in their reactivity for up to four cycles.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)3971-3977
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry A
Issue number11
StatePublished - 21 Mar 2014


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