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Friday, 20 September 2019
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Raw materials & technologies, Technologies, Nanotechnology

Nanoparticle composites for anti-microbial films

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Using thin films of silk as templates, researchers have incorporated inorganic nanoparticles that join with the silk to form strong and flexible composite structures that have unusual optical andmechanical properties.

Georgia Tech researcher Eugenia Kharlampieva studies the properties of composite materials containing silk and metallic nanoparticles. Source: Georgia Tech Photo: Gary Meek
Georgia Tech researcher Eugenia Kharlampieva studies the properties of composite materials containing silk and metallic nanoparticles. Source: Geor...

Less than 100 nanometers thick, silk-silver nanoparticle composite films formed in a bio-enabled, surface-mediated approach can be used to create anti-microbial films as used for biocidal properties in coatings, as well as for self-cleaning coatings. The technique could also be used for films that reflect light in specific wavelengths as it is interesting for effect pigments. This approach mimics the growth and assembly processes of natural materials, taking advantage of the ability of biomolecules to chemically reduce metal ions to produce nanoparticles without harsh processing conditions. The nanoparticles produced range in size from four to six nanometers in diameter, surrounded by a biological shell of between one and two nanometers. The silk template permits good control of the nanoparticle placement, creating a composite with equally dispersed particles that remain separate. This project is sponsored by the Air Force Office for Scientific Research and the Air Force Research Laboratory in USA.

related links:

http://www.gatech.edu

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