A novel anionic surfactant templating route for synthesizing mesoporous silica with unique structure

Shunai Che*, Alfonso E. Garcia-Bennett, Toshiyuki Yokoi, Kazutami Sakamoto, Hironobu Kunieda, Osamu Terasaki, Takashi Tatsumi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

524 Citations (Scopus)


Anionic surfactants are used in greater volume than any other surfactants because of their highly potent detergency and low cost of manufacture. However, they have not been used as templates for synthesizing mesoporous silica. Here we show a templating route for preparing mesoporous silicas based on self-assembly of anionic surfactants and inorganic precursors. We use aminosilane or quaternized aminosilane as co-structure-directing agent (CSDA), which is different from previous pathways1-10. The alkoxysilane site of CSDA is co-condensed with inorganic precursors; the ammonium site of CSDA, attached to silicon atoms incorporated into the wall, electrostatically interacts with the anionic surfactants to produce well-ordered anionic-surfactant-templated mesoporous silicas (AMS). These have new structures with periodic modulations as well as two-dimensional hexagonal and lamellar phases. The periodic modulations may be caused by the coexistence of micelles that differ in size or curvature, possibly owing to local chirality. These mesoporous silicas provide a new family of mesoporous materials as well as shedding light on the structural behaviour of anionic surfactants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)801-805
Number of pages5
JournalNature Materials
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2003
Externally publishedYes


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