Researchers find easy way to deposit metal nanoparticles on a surface using tape

February 13, 2015 by Bob Yirka, Phys.org report

Researchers find easy way to deposit metal nanoparticles on a surface using tape
(Phys.org)—A combined team of researchers from Northwestern University in the U.S. and Bilkent University in Turkey has found that ordinary Scotch tape can be used to create a metal nanoparticle surface. In their paper published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, the team describes how they used ordinary sticky tape to create the surfaces and why it worked so well.

Adding to a surface offers a way to confer properties onto it that would not be present otherwise—allowing rubbers to conduct electricity, for example. But, getting nanoparticles to adhere to desired products oftentimes involves a lot of time, effort or money (not to mention hazardous waste byproducts) which can detract from its usefulness. In this new effort, the researchers found that common, inexpensive sticky tape provides an opportunity for adding nanoparticles to a surface in a simple, clean way.

The researchers note that unspooling sticky tape from its roll causes bonds within the tape polymer to break which results in radicals forming on its surface—radicals that are attracted to metal nanoparticles. That meant, all they had to do was create a liquid solution with nanoparticles in it, drop a length of sticky tape into it and let it soak for awhile. The nanoparticles bonded with the radicals causing them to adhere, forming a layer on the tape material made of the nanoparticles, and that imbued the sticky tape with the attractive properties of the metal nanoparticles.

Using this method, the team created sticky tape strips with to increase electrical conductivity, copper to allow it to be used as a fungicide and silver to allow for use as an antibiotic. They noted that their process did not cause a reduction in stickiness, which meant the tape could still be applied to another surface, adding to its desirable attributes. Also they noted that the technique could be adapted to tapes not on a roll by using physical pressure to release the radicals. As one example, they placed a length of into a bath of silver nitrate for a few hours—it turned yellow-orange, indicating that the silver in the bath had indeed formed a layer on the tape.

Explore further: Coating noble metal nanoparticles with silica

More information: Mechanochemical Activation and Patterning of an Adhesive Surface toward Nanoparticle Deposition, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2015, 137 (5), pp 1726–1729. DOI: 10.1021/ja507983x

Abstract
Mechanical pulling of adhesive tape creates radicals on the tape's surface. These radicals are capable of reducing metal salts to the corresponding metal nanoparticles. In this way, the mechanically activated tape can be decorated with various types of nanoparticles, including Au, Ag, Pd, or Cu. While retaining their mechanical properties and remaining "sticky," the tapes can exhibit new properties derived from the presence of metal nanoparticles (e.g., bacteriostaticity, increased electrical conductivity). They can also be patterned with nanoparticles only at selective locations of mechanical activation.

Related Stories

Coating noble metal nanoparticles with silica

February 4, 2015

A straightforward and effective process for coating silver, gold and platinum nanoparticles with functionalized silica shells at room temperature has been developed by A*STAR . Crucially, unlike conventional methods for producing ...

Research team finds a way to produce black phosphorus in bulk

January 15, 2015

(Phys.org)—A team of researchers working at Trinity College in Ireland has found a way to produce black phosphorus in bulk, theoretically paving the way for its use in real applications. They have written a paper describing ...

Scientists discover fractal pattern in Scotch tape

December 9, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- Clear cellophane tape – which can be found in almost every home in the industrialized world – may seem quite ordinary, but recent research has shown otherwise. In 2008, scientists discovered that, ...

Recommended for you

Coffee-based colloids for direct solar absorption

March 22, 2019

Solar energy is one of the most promising resources to help reduce fossil fuel consumption and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions to power a sustainable future. Devices presently in use to convert solar energy into thermal ...

EPA adviser is promoting harmful ideas, scientists say

March 22, 2019

The Trump administration's reliance on industry-funded environmental specialists is again coming under fire, this time by researchers who say that Louis Anthony "Tony" Cox Jr., who leads a key Environmental Protection Agency ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.