We report a solution-phase annealing of spherical Co nanocrystals synthesized in reverse micelles and coated with dodecanoic acid. The deposition of a drop of solution on a transmission electron microscope grid shows that a progressive increase in the temperature to 316 ! C results in the progressive crystallographic transition from a polycrystalline and probably face-centered cubic Co phase to the single-crystalline hexagonal close-packed (hcp) Co phase. These nanocrystals are highly stable against oxidation and coalescence. We stress that, to our knowledge, this constitutes the firrst example in the literature of pure hcp-Co spherical single crystals dispersed in solution. These nanocrystals can be freely manipulated and, due to their, low size dispersion, can self-organize on various substrates.
Source : How Can the nanocrystallinity of 7 nm Spherical Co nanoparticles dispersed in solution be improved? M. Cavalier, M. Wall, I. Lisiecki, and M.P. Pileni. Langmuir, 2011, 27, 5014–5020.