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Stable Pre‐nucleation Calcium Carbonate Clusters Define Liquid‐Liquid Phase Separation
Angewandte Chemie International Edition ( IF 12.257 ) Pub Date : 2020-01-13 , DOI: 10.1002/anie.201915350
Jonathan T. Avaro; Stefan L. P. Wolf; Karin Hauser; Denis Gebauer

Liquid‐liquid phase separation (LLPS) is an intermediate step during the precipitation of calcium carbonate, and is assumed to play a key role in biomineralization processes. Here, we developed a model where homogeneous phase ion association thermodynamics determines the liquid‐liquid miscibility gap of the aqueous calcium carbonate system, verified experimentally using potentiometric titrations, and kinetic studies based on stopped‐flow ATR‐FTIR spectroscopy. The proposed mechanism explains varying solubilities of solid amorphous calcium carbonates, reconciling previously inconsistent literature values. Accounting for liquid‐liquid amorphous polymorphism, the model also provides clues to the mechanism of polymorph selection. It is general and should be tested for other systems than calcium carbonate, providing a new perspective on the physical chemistry of LLPS mechanisms—based on stable pre‐nucleation clusters rather than un‐/metastable fluctuations—in biomineralization, and beyond.
更新日期:2020-01-14

 

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