The amphiphilic star-like copolymer polyethylenimine-block-poly(ϵ-caprolactone) (PEI-b-PCL) was utilized to transfer the pre-synthesized citrate-capped noble metal nanoparticles (NMNPs) from an aqueous layer to an organic layer without any additional reagents. Dynamic light scattering (DLS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) were utilized to study the assembly of the polymers coated on the surface of the citrate-capped NMNPs. After removing the organic solvent, the polymer-coated NMNPs in powder form (PCP-NMNPs) were obtained. The excellent solubility of the PEI-b-PCL allows the PCP-NMNPs to be easily dispersed in most of the organic solvents without any significant aggregation. Moreover, the good thermal stability and long-term stability make PCP-NMNPs an excellent NMNP-containing hybrid system for different specific applications, such as surface coating, catalysis and thermoplastic processing of nanocomposite materials.
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