Janus particles

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Artists impression of a Janus particle

Janus particles are particles consisting of (at least) two parts with different interactions. For example, the typical Janus particle is a sphere which has a short-range attraction on one half of the particle, but is purely repulsive on the other side. However, the term has also been used for non-spherical particles. The name derives from the two-faced Roman god Janus. Janus particles can be considered as a one-patch patchy particle.

Experimentally, the different interactions can be achieved by (for example) making the two parts of the surface hydrophobic and hydrophilic, positively and negatively charged, or smooth and rough (leading to different interactions in the presence of depletants). In simulations, these particles are often modeled using the Kern-Frenkel interaction potential.

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[1] [2]

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