Navigation Links
U of T researchers build an antenna for light
Date:7/10/2011

TORONTO, ON University of Toronto researchers have derived inspiration from the photosynthetic apparatus in plants to engineer a new generation of nanomaterials that control and direct the energy absorbed from light.

Their findings are reported in a forthcoming issue of Nature Nanotechnology, which will be released on July 10, 2011.

The U of T researchers, led by Professors Shana Kelley and Ted Sargent, report the construction of what they term "artificial molecules."

"Nanotechnologists have for many years been captivated by quantum dots particles of semiconductor that can absorb and emit light efficiently, and at custom-chosen wavelengths," explained co-author Kelley, a Professor at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, the Department of Biochemistry in the Faculty of Medicine, and the Department of Chemistry in the Faculty of Arts & Science. "What the community has lacked until now is a strategy to build higher-order structures, or complexes, out of multiple different types of quantum dots. This discovery fills that gap."

The team combined its expertise in DNA and in semiconductors to invent a generalized strategy to bind certain classes of nanoparticles to one another.

"The credit for this remarkable result actually goes to DNA: its high degree of specificity its willingness to bind only to a complementary sequence enabled us to build rationally-engineered, designer structures out of nanomaterials," said Sargent, a Professor in The Edward S. Rogers Sr. Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto, who is also the Canada Research Chair in Nanotechnology. "The amazing thing is that our antennas built themselves we coated different classes of nanoparticles with selected sequences of DNA, combined the different families in one beaker, and nature took its course. The result is a beautiful new set of self-assembled materials with exciting properties."

Traditional antennas increase the amount of an electromagnetic wave such as a radio frequency that is absorbed, and then funnel that energy to a circuit. The U of T nanoantennas instead increased the amount of light that is absorbed and funneled it to a single site within their molecule-like complexes. This concept is already used in nature in light harvesting antennas, constituents of leaves that make photosynthesis efficient. "Like the antennas in radios and mobile phones, our complexes captured dispersed energy and concentrated it to a desired location. Like the light harvesting antennas in the leaves of a tree, our complexes do so using wavelengths found in sunlight," explained Sargent.

"Professors Kelley and Sargent have invented a novel class of materials with entirely new properties. Their insight and innovative research demonstrates why the University of Toronto leads in the field of nanotechnology," said Professor Henry Mann, Dean of the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy.

"This is a terrific piece of work that demonstrates our growing ability to assemble precise structures, to tailor their properties, and to build in the capability to control these properties using external stimuli," noted Paul S. Weiss, Fred Kavli Chair in NanoSystems Sciences at UCLA and Director of the California NanoSystems Institute.

Kelley explained that the concept published in today's Nature Nanotechnology paper is a broad one that goes beyond light antennas alone.

"What this work shows is that our capacity to manipulate materials at the nanoscale is limited only by human imagination. If semiconductor quantum dots are artificial atoms, then we have rationally synthesized artificial molecules from these versatile building blocks."


'/>"/>

Contact: Jef Ekins
j.ekins@utoronto.ca
416-946-7036
University of Toronto Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. NC State researchers get to root of parasite genome
2. Researchers find animal with ability to survive climate change
3. Researchers find an essential gene for forming ears of corn
4. Researchers note differences between people and animals on calorie restriction
5. Researchers study acoustic communication in deep-sea fish
6. Researchers discover that growing up too fast may mean dying young in honey bees
7. Researchers study how pistachios may improve heart health
8. UI researchers find potentially toxic substance present in Chicago air
9. Researchers develop new self-training gene prediction program for fungi
10. Case Western Reserve University researchers track Chernobyl fallout
11. Childrens National researchers develop novel anti-tumor vaccine
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/7/2017)... , Feb. 7, 2017 Zimmer Biomet Holdings, ... musculoskeletal healthcare, will present at the LEERINK Partners 6th ... Palace Hotel on Wednesday, February 15, 2017 at 10 ... of the presentation can be accessed at http://wsw.com/webcast/leerink28/zbh ... the conference via Zimmer Biomet,s Investor Relations website at ...
(Date:2/6/2017)... DENVER , Feb. 6, 2017 ... national security are driving border authorities to continue ... Acuity reports there are 2143 Automated Border Control ... Kiosks currently deployed at more than 163 ports ... between 2013 to 2016 achieving a combined CAGR ...
(Date:2/3/2017)... , Feb. 3, 2017 A new ... Identity Strategy Partners, LLP (IdSP) . Designed to fill ... the complex identity market, founding partners Mark Crego ... 35 combined years just in identity expertise that span ... and non-profit leadership. The Crego-Kephart combined expertise has a ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/1/2017)... NEW YORK , March 1, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... Company), a late-stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel cancer ... today reported updated positive Phase II data from ... myeloma (MM) patients. Consistent with preliminary data, the ... high-risk MM patients, positioning galinpepimut-S as a potential ...
(Date:3/1/2017)... Fla. , March 1, 2017  Friends, family, ... living with multiple sclerosis (MS), a chronic condition affecting ... MSWorld , MS Views and News , ... the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation — have joined biotechnology ... partners through the #MySupportHero initiative. During MS Awareness Month, ...
(Date:3/1/2017)... ... March 01, 2017 , ... Morris South ( http://www.morrissouth.com ... and open house, Southern Tech Fest, April 4-5 in Huntsville, Alabama. The regional ... Chiron and perform live metal cutting demonstrations throughout the event. More than 20 ...
(Date:2/28/2017)... ... February 28, 2017 , ... ... and instruments for sensitive, label-free biomolecular interaction analysis, has announced collaborations with ... Japan. The collaborators expect rapid and effective screening and ranking of inhibitors, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: