Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Designer Gradients Speed Surface Science Experiments

Date:
June 9, 2006
Source:
National Institute of Standards and Technology
Summary:
Researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have demonstrated an elegantly simple technique for synthesizing a wide variety of complex "gradient compostion surfaces" that it can be applied to surface science experiments ranging from developing better paints to exploring the bonding of proteins to cell membranes.

Illustration of NIST's new gradient surface for materials research: a graded co-polymer.
Credit: NIST

Researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have demonstrated an elegantly simple technique for synthesizing a wide variety of complex surfaces that vary in a controlled fashion across a test strip. The new technique is so flexible that it can be applied to surface science experiments ranging from developing better paints to exploring the bonding of proteins to cell membranes.

So-called "gradient composition surfaces"--their chemical composition changes gradually across the surface--have been shown to be powerful research tools for rapid, high-throughput testing of complicated surface properties, but they can be tricky to build. The new NIST technique described in a recent paper in Advanced Materials* coats a silicon wafer with a brush-like copolymer surface, varying the relative concentration of two components, or monomers, of the polymer along the length of the substrate. The dense polymer brush provides a controlled interaction surface at the top while effectively masking the underlying substrate.

The heart of the NIST technique is a combined microfluidic mixer and reaction chamber. The two components are injected into the mixer with gradually changing flow rates and mix thoroughly before filling a thin reaction chamber holding the silicon wafer substrate. Once the solution leaves the mixing region, the narrow dimensions of the reaction chamber inhibit further mixing, so the varying composition ratios through the chamber remain stable while the solution polymerizes on the substrate.

Because it keeps the fluid mixture concentrations stable for long periods, the new technique is unique in its ability to accommodate a wide variety of materials, potentially producing test surfaces for studying surface phenomena ranging from nanoscale interactions of biomolecules--critical for improving the performance of tissue-engineered medical products or for identifying the fundamental mechanisms key to cell/surface adhesion--to the performance of new products like paints or adhesives. The specific polymer used in these proof-of-concept experiments, for example, is typical of a temperature- or acidity-sensitive polymer that might be used in a drug delivery system.

For further information, see the paper cited below or visit the NIST Combinatorial Methods Center Web site at www.nist.gov/combi.

*C. Xu, S.E. Barnes, T. Wu, D.A. Fischer, D.M. DeLongchamp, J.D. Batteas, and K.L. Beers. Solution and surface composition gradients via microfluidics confinement: fabrication of a statistical-copolymer-brush composition gradient. Adv. Mater. 2006, 18, 1427-1430.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Institute of Standards and Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

National Institute of Standards and Technology. "Designer Gradients Speed Surface Science Experiments." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 June 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/06/060609093105.htm>.
National Institute of Standards and Technology. (2006, June 9). Designer Gradients Speed Surface Science Experiments. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/06/060609093105.htm
National Institute of Standards and Technology. "Designer Gradients Speed Surface Science Experiments." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/06/060609093105.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

UN Joint Mission Starts Removing Landmines in Cyprus

UN Joint Mission Starts Removing Landmines in Cyprus

AFP (Apr. 23, 2014) The UN mission in Cyprus (UNFICYP) led a mine clearance demonstration on Wednesday in the UN-controlled buffer zone where demining operations are being conducted near the Cypriot village of Mammari. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Air Force: $4.2B Saved from Grounding A-10s

Air Force: $4.2B Saved from Grounding A-10s

AP (Apr. 23, 2014) Speaking about the future of the United States Air Force, Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh says the choice to divest the A-10 fleet was logical and least impactful. (April 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jets Fuel Jump in Boeing's Revenue

Jets Fuel Jump in Boeing's Revenue

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 23, 2014) A sharp rise in revenue for commercial jets offset a decline in Boeing's defense business. And a big increase in deliveries lifted profitability. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is North Korea Planning Nuclear Test #4?

Is North Korea Planning Nuclear Test #4?

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) South Korean officials say North Korea is preparing to conduct another nuclear test, but is Pyongyang just bluffing this time? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins