Mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) are widely studied and are an interesting material due to its application in wide range of areas, for example, in drug delivery, catalysis, in sensors, and in adsorption and separation. Specifically, MSNs contain high surface area and large pore volume, providing high drug loading capacity, tunable pore size, surface chemistry for accommodation of a variety of guest molecules, and versatile functionalization on the external and internal surface for a broad spectrum of applications. Many new strategies have been developed for the synthesis and functionalization of mesoporous silica-based materials. The functionalization of MSNs is highly important as it leads to the development of new chemical and physical properties. Thus, preparation of these organic/inorganic hybrid structures requires facile and controlled techniques to generate enhanced properties. The grafting of polymers using controlled radical polymerization (CRP) techniques has turned out to be the best suited method to synthesize these well-defined organic-inorganic hybrid MSNs. Most common polymerization techniques are atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP), reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization, and nitroxide mediated polymerization (NMP). This chapter will be highlighting the state-of-the-art techniques for the synthesis of variety of MSNs, its functionalization using CRP techniques, and application of polymer functionalized MSNs.
Part of the book: Advances in Microporous and Mesoporous Materials