Nano-scale process may speed accelerate arrival of cheaper hi-tech products

An inexpensive way to make products incorporating nanoparticles.

Nanoparticles are visible on the surface of a fuel cell produced by a technology known as electrospinning, which could speed the commercial development of devices, materials and technologies that exploit the physical properties of nanoparticles. CREDIT Dr Norbert Radacsi
Nanoparticles are visible on the surface of a fuel cell produced by a technology known as electrospinning, which could speed the commercial development of devices, materials and technologies that exploit the physical properties of nanoparticles. CREDIT Dr Norbert Radacsi

Recently, scientists have come up with an inexpensive way to make products incorporating nanoparticles – such as high-performance energy devices or sophisticated diagnostic tests. The method could accelerate the commercial development of devices, materials, and technologies that exploit the physical properties of nanoparticles.

Engineers demonstrated their assembling procedure, known as electrospinning, by building a fuel cell – a gadget that changes overfills into electrical power without burning.

Their gadget was delivered including strands of nanoscale fibers fusing nanoparticles at first glance. It offers a high contact territory between the energy cell segments and the oxygen noticeable all around, making it more effective.

Scientists primarily built up the fuel cell using a nozzle-free electrospinning device. They then created nanofibers from the liquid on the surface of the drum, which is spun onto an adjacent hot surface. As the fibers cool to form a fuel cell component, nanocrystals emerge on their surface, creating a large surface area.

During experiments, scientists found that the nanofibre fuel cell performed better than conventional components. Such devices are very difficult to manufacture by other techniques.

Dr Norbert Radacsi, of the University of Edinburgh‘s School of Engineering, who led the study, said: “Our approach of electrospinning offers a quick and inexpensive way to form nanomaterials with a high surface area. This could lead to products with improved performance, such as fuel cells, on an industrial scale.”

The study, published in Nature Communications, was funded by the US Department of Energy.