Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Sieve holds nanoparticles and acts as solar absorber

Date:
November 26, 2012
Source:
Christian-Albrechts-Universitaet zu Kiel
Summary:
A membrane consisting of polymer fibers and proteins makes a novel filter for tiny, nano-scaled particles in aqueous solutions.

The nanofluid with particles of gold (left) and the solution filtered (right). All metal particles are filtered out.
Credit: Copyright: CAU, Photo: Claudia Eulitz

A membrane consisting of polymer fibres and proteins makes a novel filter for tiny, nano-scaled particles in aqueous solutions. The result of this research, which was done by Professor Mady Elbahri and his team from the Institute of Material Science at Kiel University (KU) and the Institute of Polymer Research at Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht (HZG), has recently been published as the cover article in the current issue of Advanced Functional Materials.

A nanofluid, which means a colloidal suspension of e.g. metal nanoparticles in water, passes easily through commonly used macroporous polymeric membranes. The particles are too small to be held using hole diameters between three and four micrometers. In addition, the particles would block smaller sieve openings rapidly. Hence, pressure would be necessary to filter out the fluid.

In order to solve these problems, Elbahri and his team biofunctionalized their membrane and added a commercially available protein to the fibres. "We found out that the protein undergoes a conformational change under water, and its ability to capture all the metal nanoparticles during the filtration process is activated," explains Elbahri. "This is a breakthrough," adds Co-author Dr. Shahin Homaeigohar. "The same principle will hopefully enable us, to filter biomolecules and organisms out of waste water."

From Filtration to solar thermal energy

When the nano sieve captures metal particles such as gold, another application is at hand, because, no other method has succeeded in dispersing the particles that well. "This result was unexpected," says Elbahri. "Under dry conditions, the membrane shows the color of the metal, in this case the red of the gold nanoparticles." When the membrane gets wet, it becomes black. "Then, it acts as an omnidirectional perfect black absorber, which can be used as a solar absorber." Elbahri adds: "Indeed we bridge the gaps between several disciplines, chemistry, physics, bioscience and materials science that is, and the Nanochemistry and Nanoengineering group has now initiated the first step toward intradisciplinarity of Nanoscience."

Application as a virus and bio-filter

The nano sieve will allow filtering very small particles or biomolecules and organisms such as viruses out of water. The scientists involved have already patented their innovation, a bio-nano-composite, in Europe. Another patent for the USA is . Besides its application in water filtration, the nano sieve shows great potentials as solar absorber and as a catalyser. "All in all, the result is a breakthrough towards the design of an operative filtration process, as a new route for the fabrication of functional materials, and offers commercially attractive efficiencies at a low cost," says Elbahri.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Christian-Albrechts-Universitaet zu Kiel. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Mady Elbahri, Shahin Homaeigohar, Ramzy Abdelaziz, Tianhe Dai, Rania Khalil, Ahnaf Usman Zillohu. Smart Metal-Polymer Bionanocomposites as Omnidirectional Plasmonic Black Absorber Formed by Nanofluid Filtration. Advanced Functional Materials, 2012; 22 (22): 4771 DOI: 10.1002/adfm.201200768

Cite This Page:

Christian-Albrechts-Universitaet zu Kiel. "Sieve holds nanoparticles and acts as solar absorber." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121126110526.htm>.
Christian-Albrechts-Universitaet zu Kiel. (2012, November 26). Sieve holds nanoparticles and acts as solar absorber. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121126110526.htm
Christian-Albrechts-Universitaet zu Kiel. "Sieve holds nanoparticles and acts as solar absorber." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121126110526.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Argentina's Tax Evaders Detected, Hunted Down by Drones

Argentina's Tax Evaders Detected, Hunted Down by Drones

AFP (Sep. 30, 2014) Argentina doesn't only have Lionel Messi the footballer, it has now also acquired "Mesi" the drone system which monitors undeclared mansions, swimming pools and soy fields to curb tax evasion in the country. Duration: 01:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) More and more studies are showing positive benefits to playing video games, but the jury is still out on brain training programs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 29, 2014) CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, celebrates 60 years of bringing nations together through science. As Joanna Partridge reports from inside the famous science centre it's also planning to turn the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator back on after an upgrade. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
This 'Invisibility Cloak' Is Simpler Than Most

This 'Invisibility Cloak' Is Simpler Than Most

Newsy (Sep. 28, 2014) Researchers from the University of Rochester have created a type of invisibility cloak with simple focal lenses. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

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