Mixing nanoparticles creates customized materials
Scientists have discovered a way to combine nanoparticles into composites, using DNA as the paste between them.
Scientists at the Brookhaven National Laboratory have figured out a way to mix and match different nanoparticles to create interesting composites. By combining particles with different optical, magnetic or chemical properties, they can manufacture new multifunctional materials for a wide array of purposes.
The method discovered utilizes the attractive properties of complimentary pairs in DNA: The scientists coat the nanoparticles in a chemical “construction platform”, to which DNA strands can be attached. Strands of synthetic, lab-designed DNA molecules are attached to the construction platform, and the assemblies are then brought together. The DNA naturally links up with their complimentary pairs and the composite is finished.