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Bimetallic (Ag)Au nanoparticles prepared by the seed growth method: two-dimensional assembling, characterization by energy dispersive X-ray analysis, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and surface enhanced raman spectroscopy, and proposed mechanism of growth.


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      Layered core-shell bimetallic silver-gold nanoparticles were prepared by overdeposition of Au over Ag seeds by the seed-growth method using tetrachloroauric acid, with hydroxylamine hydrochloride as the reductant. The effects of pH, reduction rate, and seeding conditions on the morphology and surface plasmon extinction of the bimetallic nanoparticles were investigated. Nanoparticles prepared by a rapid reduction in the neutral ambient and assembled into two-dimensional nanoparticulate films by adsorption of 2,2'-bipyridine were characterized by energy-dispersive X-ray analysis, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, surface-enhanced Raman scattering spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy. The results are consistent with Ag core and Ag/Au-alloyed shell composition of the nanoparticles. Evidence of the presence of Ag on the surface of the nanoparticles, of enrichment of the Ag/Au alloy shell by Ag toward or at the nanoparticle surface, and of modification of the nanoparticle surface by adsorbed chlorides is also provided. Reduction of the size of the Ag seeds, alloying of Ag and Au in the shell of the nanoparticles, and modification of their surfaces by adsorbed chlorides are tentatively attributed to positive charging of the nanoparticles during the electrocatalytic overdeposition of Au over Ag seeds.

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