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Method and apparatus for physical separation of different sized nanostructures

United States Patent

July 10, 2012
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
The present application provides apparatuses and methods for the size-selective fractionation of ligand-capped nanoparticles that utilizes the tunable thermophysical properties of gas-expanded liquids. The nanoparticle size separation processes are based on the controlled reduction of the solvent strength of an organic phase nanoparticle dispersion through increases in concentration of the antisolvent gas, such as CO.sub.2, via pressurization. The method of nanomaterial separation contains preparing a vessel having a solvent and dispersed nanoparticles, pressurizing the chamber with a gaseous antisolvent, and causing a first amount of the nanoparticles to precipitate, transporting the solution to a second vessel, pressurizing the second vessel with the gaseous antisolvent and causing further nanoparticles to separate from the solution.
Roberts; Christopher B. (Auburn, AL), Saunders; Steven R. (Auburn, AL)
Auburn University (Auburn, AL)
12/ 610,120
October 30, 2009
U.S. GOVERNMENT AGENCY AND THE GOVERNMENT CONTRACT The invention was made by an agency of the United States Government or under a contract with an agency of the United States Government. The name of the U.S. Government agency and the Government contract number are: DOE-National Energy Technology Laboratory Grant No. DE-FG26-06NT42685.