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Molecular dynamics simulations of hydroxyapatite nanopores in contact with electrolyte solutions: the effect of nanoconfinement and solvated ions on the surface reactivity and the structural, dynamical, and vibrational properties of water

Di Tommaso, Devis, Prakash, Muthuramalingam, Lemaire, Thibault, Lewerenz, Marius, De Leeuw, Nora and Naili, Salah 2017. Molecular dynamics simulations of hydroxyapatite nanopores in contact with electrolyte solutions: the effect of nanoconfinement and solvated ions on the surface reactivity and the structural, dynamical, and vibrational properties of water. Crystals 7 (2) , 57. 10.3390/cryst7020057

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Abstract

Hydroxyapatite, the main mineral phase of mammalian tooth enamel and bone, grows within nanoconfined environments and in contact with aqueous solutions that are rich in ions. Hydroxyapatite nanopores of different pore sizes (20 Å ≤ H ≤ 110 Å, where H is the size of the nanopore) in contact with liquid water and aqueous electrolyte solutions (CaCl2 (aq) and CaF2 (aq)) were investigated using molecular dynamics simulations to quantify the effect of nanoconfinement and solvated ions on the surface reactivity and the structural and dynamical properties of water. The combined effect of solution composition and nanoconfinement significantly slows the self-diffusion coefficient of water molecules compared with bulk liquid. Analysis of the pair and angular distribution functions, distribution of hydrogen bonds, velocity autocorrelation functions, and power spectra of water shows that solution composition and nanoconfinement in particular enhance the rigidity of the water hydrogen bonding network. Calculation of the water exchange events in the coordination of calcium ions reveals that the dynamics of water molecules at the HAP–solution interface decreases substantially with the degree of confinement. Ions in solution also reduce the water dynamics at the surface calcium sites. Together, these changes in the properties of water impart an overall rigidifying effect on the solvent network and reduce the reactivity at the hydroxyapatite-solution interface. Since the process of surface-cation-dehydration governs the kinetics of the reactions occurring at mineral surfaces, such as adsorption and crystal growth, this work shows how nanoconfinement and solvation environment influence the molecular-level events surrounding the crystallization of hydroxyapatite.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Chemistry
Publisher: MDPI
ISSN: 2073-4352
Funders: EPSRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 15 March 2017
Date of Acceptance: 10 February 2017
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 09:45
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/99010

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