Australian researchers at the University of Adelaide have developed a method for embedding light-emitting nanoparticles into glass without losing any of their unique properties – a major step towards ‘smart glass’ applications such as 3D display screens or remote radiation sensors.
This new “hybrid glass” successfully combines the properties of these special luminescent (or light-emitting) nanoparticles with the well-known aspects of glass, such as transparency and the ability to be processed into various shapes including very fine optical fibres.
The research, in collaboration with Macquarie University and University of Melbourne, has been published online in the journal Advanced Optical Materials.
“These novel luminescent nanoparticles, called upconversion nanoparticles, have become promising candidates for a whole variety of ultra-high tech applications such as biological sensing, biomedical imaging and 3D volumetric displays,” says lead author Dr Tim Zhao, from the University of Adelaide’s School of Physical Sciences and Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing (IPAS).
“Integrating these nanoparticles into glass, which is usually inert, opens up exciting possibilities for new hybrid materials and devices that can take advantage of the properties of nanoparticles in ways we haven’t been able to do before. For example, neuroscientists currently use dye injected into the brain and lasers to be able to guide a glass pipette to the site they are interested in. If fluorescent nanoparticles were embedded in the glass pipettes, the unique luminescence of the hybrid glass could act like a torch to guide the pipette directly to the individual neurons of interest.”
Although this method was developed with upconversion nanoparticles, the researchers believe their new ‘direct-doping’ approach can be generalised to other nanoparticles with interesting photonic, electronic and magnetic properties. There will be many applications – depending on the properties of the nanoparticle.
“If we infuse glass with a nanoparticle that is sensitive to radiation and then draw that hybrid glass into a fibre, we could have a remote sensor suitable for nuclear facilities,” says Dr Zhao.
To date, the method used to integrate upconversion nanoparticles into glass has relied on the in-situ growth of the nanoparticles within the glass.
“We’ve seen remarkable progress in this area but the control over the nanoparticles and the glass compositions has been limited, restricting the development of many proposed applications,” says project leader Professor Heike Ebendorff-Heideprem, Deputy Director of IPAS.
“With our new direct doping method, which involves synthesizing the nanoparticles and glass separately and then combining them using the right conditions, we’ve been able to keep the nanoparticles intact and well dispersed throughout the glass. The nanoparticles remain functional and the glass transparency is still very close to its original quality. We are heading towards a whole new world of hybrid glass and devices for light-based technologies.”
Learn more: Glass now has smart potential
The Latest on: Nanoparticles and glass
via Google News
The Latest on: Nanoparticles and glass
- Physicists do something very coolon February 2, 2020 at 5:06 am
Delić’s team applied these techniques to trap and suspend a solid-state 150-nanometre glass sphere containing 100 million atoms. Starting from room temperature, they laser-cooled the nanoparticle to ...
- A quantum of solid: A glass nanoparticle in the quantum regimeon January 31, 2020 at 4:16 am
Researchers in Austria have used lasers to levitate and cool a glass nanoparticle into the quantum regime. Although it is trapped in a room-temperature environment, the particle's motion is solely ...
- Sensitive Readout for Microfluidic High-Throughput Applications using Scanning SQUID Microscopyon January 31, 2020 at 2:47 am
Although magnetic nanoparticles cannot be completely avoided in ambient conditions ... Third, another modification that can be made is fabricating the microfluidic device on a thin flat non-magnetic ...
- A quantum of solidon January 30, 2020 at 12:44 pm
Researchers in Austria use lasers to levitate and cool a glass nanoparticle into the quantum regime. Although it is trapped in a room temperature environment, the particle's motion is solely governed ...
- Cooling a 'massive' solid-state nanoparticle into its quantum ground stateon January 30, 2020 at 11:07 am
In a study probing the boundary between the classical and quantum worlds, researchers laser-cooled a tiny glass nanoparticle with the density of a solid object to a quantum state. The particle they ...
- Bioinspired structural color patch with anisotropic surface adhesionon January 24, 2020 at 11:12 am
2A. To obtain these colloidal crystal templates, monodispersed silica nanoparticles were self-assembled on the surface of a glass slide and formed a closely packed array through solvent evaporation, ...
- A highly scalable dielectric metamaterial with superior capacitor performance over a broad temperatureon January 24, 2020 at 11:11 am
Alumina nanoparticles at 1 wt % were dispersed in DMF at room temperature using Elma “P” Series Ultrasonics (250 W) for 1 hour. Afterward, the PEI solution was poured into this suspension and ...
- Multifunctional polymer-free mineral plastic adhesives formed by multiple non-covalent bondson January 22, 2020 at 5:35 pm
The adhesive is formed by intermolecular coulomb forces between amorphous magnesium carbonate nanoparticles and the low-molecular ... including metals, glass, paper and plastics, and that is ...
- Subwavelength dielectric resonators for nonlinear nanophotonicson January 16, 2020 at 1:03 pm
The nanoparticles were subsequently transferred to a substrate made of a commercial film of 300-nm ITO on glass with an added SiO 2 spacer 350-nm thick [see materials and methods and part 7 of the ...
- Why are nanoparticles so useful? - OCR 21Con August 9, 2019 at 2:51 pm
Nanoparticles are so small that they can enter ... When light hits these coatings, they break down dirt on the glass.
via Bing News