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Raw materials & technologies, Science today - coatings tomorrow

Simple fabricating of silica films on various surfaces

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Researchers of the Nottingham Trent University (UK) have developed a new method for the fabrication of silica films on a variety of substrates including gold, polystyrene and silicon wafers.

New method for the fabrication of silica films on a variety of substrates developed NN - Fotolia.com

New method for the fabrication of silica films on a variety of substrates developed NN - Fotolia.com

Researchers of the Nottingham Trent University (UK) have developed a new method for the fabrication of silica films on a variety of substrates including gold, polystyrene and silicon wafers. This simple and versatile biomimetic strategy using nanogram amounts per cm2 of silicatein is based on the properties of the mussel adhesive protein. The strategy exploits the adhesive property of 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) and a decapeptide, important components of mussel adhesive proteins to modify the surface of substrates. The polymer films act as "cushion” on coated surfaces to protect the active structure and maintain the activity of the largely chemically adsorbed silicatein. Uniform silica films of thickness 130–140 nm and roughness 12–14.5 nm were fabricated on coated gold surfaces. This method is also applicable for the fabrication of uniform silica films on polystyrene and silicon substrates over multiple length scales in an economical way. The complete study appeared in "Journal of Materials Chemistry”, issue 11, 2012, pp. 4790-4796.

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