Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Nanotube “Glow Sticks” Transform Surface Science Tool Kit: Los Alamos scientists detect and track single molecules with nanoscale carbon cylinders

Artist's concept of nanotubes on the liquid surface.
Image from Los Alamos National Laboratory
Artist's concept of nanotubes on the liquid surface.

Image from Los Alamos National Laboratory

Abstract:
Many physical and chemical processes necessary for biology and chemistry occur at the interface of water and solid surfaces. Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory publishing in Nature Nanotechnology have now shown that semiconducting carbon nanotubes—light emitting cylinders of pure carbon—have the potential to detect and track single molecules in water.

Nanotube “Glow Sticks” Transform Surface Science Tool Kit: Los Alamos scientists detect and track single molecules with nanoscale carbon cylinders

Los Alamos, NM | Posted on January 10th, 2012

Using high-speed microscopic imaging, they found that nanotubes could both detect and track the motion of individual molecules as they bombard the surface at the water interface. Traditional techniques to investigate molecules on surfaces cannot be used in water because the study requires low-pressure atmospheres such as one finds in space. The team is hopeful that their work will lead to practical,nanotube-based, single-molecule detectors in aqueous biological and chemical environments.

Molecular motion and attachment to surfaces is important for driving chemistry that ranges from the production of ammonia on metal to the enzymatic oxidation of glucose. The attachment takes place through sporadic motion followed by a collision with the surface to which the molecule sticks. Molecules can then move along the surface where they can collide with other molecules and undergo chemical reactions.

In traditional "surface science" experiments these processes are imaged in a vacuum where other molecular species from the air cannot blur the image. In solutions such as water, there has been no way to do this directly. Consequently, researchers have been searching for a material that can be used in water todetect individual molecules for surface-science applications.

Inspired by this challenge a team of Los Alamos scientists (Jared Crochet, Juan Duque, Jim Werner, and Steve Doorn) at LANL's Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies explored using light-emitting carbon nanotubes as detectors. With techniques developed by others, the team used soap and water to stabilize the nanotubes where they could be imaged directly with a high-speed video camera. When illuminated with laser light these tubes shine brightly, like long glow sticks.

When the glowing nanotubes are exposed in water to different chemicals, the researchers saw that certain spots of the tube would briefly go dim as the molecules bombarded the surface. This allowed them to determine how effectively certain molecules would stick to the surface. The researchers were also able to track the motion of molecules as they moved along the surface. The team is now examining how chemical reactions proceed on nanotube surfaces to better understand chemistry at the water interface forbiological and chemical applications.

The paper is titled "Photoluminescence imaging of electronic impurity-induced exciton quenching in single-walled carbon nanotubes," and can be found online at www.nature.com/nnano/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nnano.2011.227.html

It can also be accessed via digital object number dx.doi.org/10.1038/NNANO.2011.227. The DOI can be used to retrieve the abstract and full text (Nature abstracts are available to everyone, full text only to subscribers).

This work was funded by and performed at the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies, a US Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences user facility.

####

About Los Alamos National Laboratory
Los Alamos National Laboratory, a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security, isoperated by Los Alamos National Security, LLC, a team composed of Bechtel National, the University of California, The Babcock & Wilcox Company, and URS for the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration.
Los Alamos enhances national security by ensuring the safety and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile, developing technologies to reduce threats from weapons of mass destruction, and solving problems related to energy, environment, infrastructure, health, and global security concerns.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Nancy Ambrosiano
505-667-0471

Copyright © Los Alamos National Laboratory

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

Imaging

Bringing the atomic world into full color: Researchers turn atomic force microscope measurements into color images October 19th, 2017

Seeing the next dimension of computer chips: Researchers image perfectly smooth side-surfaces of 3-D silicon crystals with a scanning tunneling microscope, paving the way for smaller and faster computing devices October 11th, 2017

Photoacoustic imaging and photothermal cancer therapy using BR nanoparticles September 26th, 2017

News and information

Bringing the atomic world into full color: Researchers turn atomic force microscope measurements into color images October 19th, 2017

'Find the Lady' in the quantum world: International team of researchers presents method for quantum-mechanical swapping of positions October 18th, 2017

Long nanotubes make strong fibers: Rice University researchers advance characterization, purification of nanotube wires and films October 17th, 2017

Spinning strands hint at folding dynamics: Rice University lab uses magnetic beads to model microscopic proteins, polymers October 17th, 2017

Spin current detection in quantum materials unlocks potential for alternative electronics October 15th, 2017

Laboratories

Spin current detection in quantum materials unlocks potential for alternative electronics October 15th, 2017

Injecting electrons jolts 2-D structure into new atomic pattern: Berkeley Lab study is first to show potential of energy-efficient next-gen electronic memory October 13th, 2017

Rice U. lab surprised by ultraflat magnets: Researchers create atom-thick alloys with unanticipated magnetic properties October 13th, 2017

Copper catalyst yields high efficiency CO2-to-fuels conversion: Berkeley Lab scientists discover critical role of nanoparticle transformation September 20th, 2017

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

The secret to improving liquid crystal's mechanical performance: Better lubricating properties of lamellar liquid crystals could stem from changing the mobility of their structural dislocations by adding nanoparticles October 13th, 2017

Missing atoms in a forgotten crystal bring luminescence October 10th, 2017

Chemistry

What can be discovered at the junction of physics and chemistry October 6th, 2017

Copper catalyst yields high efficiency CO2-to-fuels conversion: Berkeley Lab scientists discover critical role of nanoparticle transformation September 20th, 2017

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Bringing the atomic world into full color: Researchers turn atomic force microscope measurements into color images October 19th, 2017

Long nanotubes make strong fibers: Rice University researchers advance characterization, purification of nanotube wires and films October 17th, 2017

Spinning strands hint at folding dynamics: Rice University lab uses magnetic beads to model microscopic proteins, polymers October 17th, 2017

Rice U. study: Vibrating nanoparticles interact: Placing nanodisks in groups can change their vibrational frequencies October 16th, 2017

Nanotubes/Buckyballs/Fullerenes/Nanorods

Long nanotubes make strong fibers: Rice University researchers advance characterization, purification of nanotube wires and films October 17th, 2017

How to draw electricity from the bloodstream: A one-dimensional fluidic nanogenerator with a high power-conversion efficiency September 11th, 2017

Silk could improve sensitivity, flexibility of wearable body sensors August 20th, 2017

Regulation of two-dimensional nanomaterials: New driving force for lithium-ion batteries July 26th, 2017

Discoveries

Bringing the atomic world into full color: Researchers turn atomic force microscope measurements into color images October 19th, 2017

'Find the Lady' in the quantum world: International team of researchers presents method for quantum-mechanical swapping of positions October 18th, 2017

Long nanotubes make strong fibers: Rice University researchers advance characterization, purification of nanotube wires and films October 17th, 2017

Spinning strands hint at folding dynamics: Rice University lab uses magnetic beads to model microscopic proteins, polymers October 17th, 2017

Announcements

Bringing the atomic world into full color: Researchers turn atomic force microscope measurements into color images October 19th, 2017

Long nanotubes make strong fibers: Rice University researchers advance characterization, purification of nanotube wires and films October 17th, 2017

Spinning strands hint at folding dynamics: Rice University lab uses magnetic beads to model microscopic proteins, polymers October 17th, 2017

Rice U. study: Vibrating nanoparticles interact: Placing nanodisks in groups can change their vibrational frequencies October 16th, 2017

Tools

Bringing the atomic world into full color: Researchers turn atomic force microscope measurements into color images October 19th, 2017

Nanometrics Announces Preliminary Results for the Third Quarter of 2017: Quarterly Results Impacted by Delays in Revenue Recognition on Multiple Systems into Japan October 12th, 2017

Seeing the next dimension of computer chips: Researchers image perfectly smooth side-surfaces of 3-D silicon crystals with a scanning tunneling microscope, paving the way for smaller and faster computing devices October 11th, 2017

Quorum announces new customer support and demonstration facilities for users worldwide October 10th, 2017

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



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project