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Acquisition Of Dynamic Light Scattering Device For Nanoparticle Characterization (Small Equipment Proposal)

Investigators
Brant, Jonathan A
Institutions
University of Wyoming
Start date
2010
End date
2011
Abstract

Over the past decade there has been a dramatic increase in the use of human-engineered nanoparticles in manufacturing, electronics, food safety, and consumer products. It is important, therefore, to understand the impact of nanomaterials on the environment. State-of-the-art equipment is needed to carry out the requisite analyses. This award funds the acquisition of a state-of-the-art dynamic light scattering instrument at the University of Wyoming that will be used to characterize nanoparticle size, charge, and stability in liquid media. Accessories including a viscometer and automatic titrating attachment for measuring nanoparticle aggregation, as well as a degassing unit for samples and titrants, are included. The instrument will be used in a wide variety of environmental nanotechnology studies. These include characterizing the interactions between organic acids and phosphate-containing nanoparticles, the synthesis of nanoparticles for photoactive films for solar conversion, studying redox-linked conformational changes of cytochromes and redox enzymes in redox catalysis, wastewater membrane pretreatment and nanoparticle filtering efficiency, and the development of unconventional filtration membranes, among others. Broader impacts of the work include increasing state-of-the-art infrastructure for science at an EPSCoR institution and research support for a minimum of seven faculty members and associated researchers, a number of whom are early career and/or female. The instrument will also be used for student research training and will be integrated into the curriculum of present laboratory courses. The instrument will serve as a critical teaching tool during the University of Wyoming's, College of Engineering, Middle School Girls Camp which is dedicated to showing middle school girls the environmental implications of nanomaterial usage and the tools used to study them. The instrument will also be used to train in-service teachers of students in grades 6-12.

Funding Source
United States Nat'l. Science Fndn.
Project number
964751
Categories
Parasites
Natural Toxins
Viruses and Prions
Bacterial Pathogens
Chemical Contaminants