Home / Knowledge / News / Textiles / Thin films of silk produce & combine with metallic particles
Thin films of silk produce & combine with metallic particles
25
Aug '09
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 and mechanical properties. This bio-enabled, surface-mediated 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.

Less than 100 nanometers thick, silk-silver nanoparticle composite films formed in this process can be used as flexible mirrors. The technique could also be used to create films that reflect light in specific wavelengths, anti-microbial coatings, thin film sensors, self-cleaning coatings, catalytic materials and potentially even flexible photovoltaic cells.

“We are taking advantage of biological molecules that have the ability to bind metallic ions of silver or gold from solution,” said Vladimir Tsukruk, a professor in the Georgia Tech School of Materials Science and Engineering. “These molecules can create mono-dispersed metallic nanoparticles of consistent sizes under ambient conditions—at room temperature and in a water-based environment without high vacuum or high temperatures.”

Sponsored by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research and the Air Force Research Laboratory, the research was described August 19 at the Fall 2009 National Meeting of the American Chemical Society.

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. The optical properties of the resulting film depend on the nanoparticle material and size.

“This system provides very precise control over nanoparticle sizes,” said Eugenia Kharlampieva, a postdoctoral researcher in Tsukruk's laboratory. “We produce well-defined materials without the problem of precipitation, aggregation or formation of large crystals. Since the silk fibroin is mono-dispersed, we can create uniform domains within the template.”

Atomic force microscope image shows a silk film on which gold nanoparticles were grown.

Fabrication of the nanocomposites begins by dissolving silk cocoons and making the resulting fibroin water soluble. The silk is then placed onto a silicon substrate using a spin-coating technique that produces multiple layers of thin film that is then patterned into a template using a nanolithography technique.

“Because silk is a protein, we can control the properties of the surface and design different kinds of surfaces,” explained Kharlampieva. “This surface-mediated approach is flexible at producing different shapes. We can apply the method to coat any surface we want, including objects of complex shapes.”

Next, the silk template is placed in a solution containing ions of gold, silver, or other metal. Over a period of time ranging from hours to days, nanoparticles form within the template. The relatively long growth process, which operates at room temperature and neutral pH in a water-based environment, allows precise control of the particle size and spacing, Tsukruk notes.


Must ReadView All

Apparel/Garments | On 22nd Sep 2017

Govt announces new duty drawback rates for garments

The Government of India has today announced the new duty drawback...

Courtesy: ITMA

Textiles | On 22nd Sep 2017

ITMA 2019 to focus on smart garment technologies

ITMA 2019, the world's largest textile and garment technology...

Apparel/Garments | On 22nd Sep 2017

New US FTC rule for RN used on textile product labels

The US Federal Trade Commission recently streamlined requirements...

Interviews View All

Veronique Lee
Modavanti

‘Sustainable fashion is trending upwards, slowly but surely, as people...

Siddharth Biyani
Mangalam Industries Pvt Ltd

‘The manufacturing sector is improving day-by-day, becoming better in...

Vidhyaa Shankar. S
A Ganapathi Chettiar

'The usage of knits is getting into the boundaries of woven fabrics'

Giorgio Mantovani
Corman S.p.A

Giorgio Mantovani, MD of Corman, with a presence in both Milano and New...

Marcel Alberts
Eurofibers

Coating at a fibre level is a practice not usually seen in the...

Iago Castro Asensio
RCfil Distribuciones S.L.

Iago Castro Asensio, International Business Manager of RCfil...

Nisha Chanda
Whistling Woods International School of Fashion

<div>A lack of upgraded courses in costume designing and fashion as per...

Bani Batra

Bani Batra’s couture wedding collection is inspired by traditional Indian...

Divvya and Nidhhi Gambhir
Walnut

<b>Divvya and Nidhhi Gambhir</b> started their career with the launch of...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

September 2017

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

news category


Related Categories:

Planning to Take the Leap towards
Sustainability?

Do you see sustainability as a route to business growth?

Yes No

Do you think the sustainability space has the needed tools and resources available for a business to lead change?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you see sustainability as a route to business growth?

Yes
74.5%
No
12.8%
Skip
12.8%

Total Votes: 47

Do you think adopting a sustainable approach will be a profitable move for your business?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you think the sustainability space has the needed tools and resources available for a business to lead change?

Yes
61.7%
No
25.5%
Skip
12.8%

Total Votes: 47

Do you want the world to know about your sustainability journey and your business’ environmental footprint?

Yes No

Active Poll

Do you think adopting a sustainable approach will be a profitable move for your business?

Yes
87.2%
No
6.4%
Skip
6.4%

Total Votes: 47

Thanks for your valuable feedback. Claim your free latest sustainability e-book.

Active Poll

Do you want the world to know about your sustainability journey and your business’ environmental footprint?

Yes
70.2%
No
10.6%
Skip
19.1%

Total Votes: 47


E-News Insight
Subscribe Today and Get the
Latest News Update in Your Mail Box.
Advanced Search