Inventors: Davis CE
Polymerization of various silicic acids on biological templates
Publication date: 2004
Methods are disclosed for using biopolymers as templates for the polymerization of monomeric silicic acids. A method is provided wherein a biological polymer is used as a template. An inorganic polymer backbone forms a shell encasing the biopolymer template. The organic portion may be removed to leave inorganic nanotubes or other micro- or nano-scale structures which are the approximate size and shape of the template. The surface macrostructure of the biological template is duplicated in a silica shell--even molecular level imprinting is possible. The resulting silica structures have many uses, especially where micro- or nano-scale morphology should be controlled. Catalysts, semiconductors or metals may be deposited on the inside surface of the inorganic shell support. In another example, micro- or nano-particles that mimic the size and shape of the biopolymer template may be synthesized.
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