Tailored porous silicon microparticles: Fabrication and properties

Ciro Chiappini, Ennio Tasciotti, Jean R. Fakhoury, Daniel Fine, Lee Pullan, Young Chung Wang, Lianfeng Fu, Xuewu Liu, Mauro Ferrari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

146 Scopus citations


The use of mesoporous silicon particles for drug delivery has been widely explored thanks to their biodegradability and biocompatibility. The ability to tailor the physicochemical properties of porous silicon at the micro- and nanoscale confers versatility to this material. A method for the fabrication of highly reproducible, monodisperse, mesoporous silicon particles with controlled physical characteristics through electrochemical etching of patterned silicon trenches is presented. The particle size is tailored in the micrometer range and pore size in the nanometer range, the shape from tubular to discoidal to hemispherical, and the porosity from 46 to over 80 %. In addition, the properties of the porous matrix are correlated with the loading of model nanoparticles (quantum dots) and their three-dimensional arrangement within the matrix is observed by transmission electron microscopy tomography. The methods developed in this study provide effective means to fabricate mesoporous silicon particles according to the principles of rational design for therapeutic vectors and to characterize the distribution of nanoparticles within the porous matrix.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1029-1035
Number of pages7
Issue number5
StatePublished - Apr 6 2010


  • Drug delivery
  • Electron microscopy
  • Mesoporous materials
  • Nanoparticles
  • Silicon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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