Nanoparticles with very small diameters (<100 nm) can be produced from a variety of compositions, such as metals, metal oxides, metal non-oxides, and polymers. The physical, chemical, and electronic properties of nanoparticles differ from those of bulk materials and molecules, which makes them desirable for preparing macroscopic, functional materials and devices. Directed nanoparticle assembly requires highly specific interactions between nanoparticles and organic molecules to achieve controlled construction of the multidimensional nanostructures. Due to their encapsulation properties, hollow spheres provide an attractive structure for many applications. However, current preparation methods are labor-intensive and require multiple, sequential steps.
Scientists at the University of California have developed a novel approach in which nanoparticles can arrange to form hollow sphere and other complex microstructures using particular block copolypeptides as the structure-directing agent. This improved method eliminates hydrolysis and condensation reactions that occur when producing hollow spheres from tetraethylorthosilicate (TEOS) while focusing on the directed assembly properties of these block copolypeptides.
This new UC invention has several applications in "nanocapsule" technology, such as:
The new UC technology provides the following benefits:
Nanoparticle Self-Assembly of Hierarchically Ordered Microcapsule Structures " R. K. Rana, V. S. Murthy, J. Yu, M. S. Wong, Advanced Materials 2005
|United States Of America||Issued Patent||7,563,457||07/21/2009||2002-069|