Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > New method applies pesticides in nanofibers to keep chemicals on target

Margaret Frey, left, associate professor of fiber science and apparel design, and research associate Chunhui Xiang have developed a method to deliver pesticides via nanofibers.
Margaret Frey, left, associate professor of fiber science and apparel design, and research associate Chunhui Xiang have developed a method to deliver pesticides via nanofibers.

Abstract:
By Sheri Hall: To prevent pesticides from drifting away and potentially posing risks to the environment, Cornell researchers have devised a solution: Apply the pesticides by encapsulating them in biodegradable nanofibers, which keeps then intact until needed and minimizes loss to drift or being washed away from the plants they are intended to protect.

New method applies pesticides in nanofibers to keep chemicals on target

Ithaca, NY | Posted on March 27th, 2009

"Our technology will decrease the amount of pesticides applied, which is good for the environment," said research associate Chunhui Xiang, Ph.D. '08, who worked on the new technology with Margaret Frey, associate professor of fiber science and apparel design in the College of Human Ecology, as well as Cornell experts in horticultural sciences and entomology. "All the materials are biodegradable and from renewable resources."

The new technology also extends how long the pesticides remain effective and improves the safety of applications. As the fiber biodegrades, the chemicals are slowly released into the soil.

Xiang, who was named the outstanding student of the American Chemical Society Division for Cellulose and Renewable Materials last year, presented the material at the American Chemical Society annual meeting, March 22-26, in Salt Lake City.

"The chemical is protected, so it won't degrade from being exposed to air and water," Frey said. "It also keeps the chemical where it needs to be and allows it to time-release."

The delivery system is created by electrospinning solutions of cellulose, the pesticide and PLA -- a polymer derived from cornstarch.

For the initial trials, Xiang measured chemical delivery in the laboratory over a 16-week period. The individual fibers tested had a diameter more than 100 times finer than a human hair and could hold up to 50 percent of their weight in agricultural chemicals. The results showed that the chemical was released gradually over the entire four-month period, and that the rate of release could be adjusted by changing the composition of the fiber. The chemical itself did not degrade.

To find out if pesticides delivered this way could really work, professor Michael Hoffmann's entomology group planted 4-by-4 millimeter squares of pesticide-loaded fabrics with pole bean seeds in greenhouses on campus. Pesticide delivered from the fabric effectively controlled white flies on the bean plants.

Meanwhile, professor Alan Taylor's group in horticultural science is investigating use of these fibers to deliver pesticides with seed coating technologies. The team is also considering this system for direct application to plant leaves or stalks.

"It's the tip of the iceberg," Frey said.

This research is funded in part by federal Hatch funds, administered by the Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station.

Sheri Hall is assistant communications director for the College of Human Ecology.

####

About Cornell University
Once called "the first American university" by educational historian Frederick Rudolph, Cornell University represents a distinctive mix of eminent scholarship and democratic ideals. Adding practical subjects to the classics and admitting qualified students regardless of nationality, race, social circumstance, gender, or religion was quite a departure when Cornell was founded in 1865.

Contacts:
Media Contact:
Nicola Pytell
(607) 254-6236


Cornell Chronicle:
Susan Lang
(607) 255-3613

Copyright © Cornell University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Northwestern researchers achieve unprecedented control of polymer grids: Materials could find applications in water purification, solar energy storage, body armor June 22nd, 2018

Nanobiotix Publishes Positive Phase 2/3 Data For Nanomedicine in Soft Tissue Cancer (Webcast June 22) June 22nd, 2018

Alzheimer's breakthrough: Brain metals that may drive disease progression revealed: In brains affected by Alzheimer's, researchers identify chemically reduced iron species, with mineral forms including a magnetic iron oxide June 22nd, 2018

Collaboration yields discovery of 12-sided silica cages June 20th, 2018

Announcements

Northwestern researchers achieve unprecedented control of polymer grids: Materials could find applications in water purification, solar energy storage, body armor June 22nd, 2018

Nanobiotix Publishes Positive Phase 2/3 Data For Nanomedicine in Soft Tissue Cancer (Webcast June 22) June 22nd, 2018

Alzheimer's breakthrough: Brain metals that may drive disease progression revealed: In brains affected by Alzheimer's, researchers identify chemically reduced iron species, with mineral forms including a magnetic iron oxide June 22nd, 2018

Collaboration yields discovery of 12-sided silica cages June 20th, 2018

Food/Agriculture/Supplements

A nanotech sensor that turns molecular fingerprints into bar codes June 7th, 2018

HTA to Present European Strategy for Competitive Micro- and Nanotechnologies & Smart Systems: Special Event in Brussels on April 24 Gathers Research Institutes’ CEOs, European Commissioners and Key European Industrials April 17th, 2018

Twisting laser light offers the chance to probe the nano-scale: A new method to sensitively measure the structure of molecules has been demonstrated by twisting laser light and aiming it at miniscule gold gratings to separate out wavelengths: April 5th, 2018

Graphene on toast, anyone? Rice University scientists create patterned graphene onto food, paper, cloth, cardboard February 13th, 2018

Environment

Squeezing light at the nanoscale: Ultra-confined light could detect harmful molecules June 17th, 2018

A nanotech sensor that turns molecular fingerprints into bar codes June 7th, 2018

Engineered polymer membranes could be new option for water treatment May 6th, 2018

Harvesting clean hydrogen fuel through artificial photosynthesis May 3rd, 2018

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project