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Bacterial Production of Mixed Metal Oxide Nanoparticles

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

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Technology Marketing SummaryResearchers at ORNL have developed a method for producing mixed metal oxide nanoparticles using anaerobic bacteria with an electron donor to reduce a metal oxide composition from a higher to a lower oxidation state. This method may be applied to cultures of a variety of metal-reducing bacteria to reduce the toxicity of dopant species to bacteria. In addition, the method provides a means by which bacteria with specifically tailored electron acceptors could facilitate research in bacterial respiration and metabolism.DescriptionA mixed metal oxide phase is prepared by the adsorption of at least one metal species onto the surface of a preexisting oxide of at least one other metal. A variety of metal species may be incorporated, provided this mixed oxide can be reduced by the bacteria. This invention provides a means by which the dopant species can be incorporated into the colloidal metal oxyhydroxide phase, resulting in a reduction in the toxicity of certain dopants to the bacteria.

The mixed metal oxide is then reduced to a lower oxidation state through the metabolic activity of the bacteria in combination with at least one electron donor to form a selected second mixed metal phase. The electron donor supports the respiration of the bacteria that culminates in the reduction of the mixed metal oxide. A crystalline product forms as reduction by the bacteria continues, and the dopant species is retained in the crystalline product.
Benefits• Reduced toxicity of dopant species to bacteria
• Synthesis of desired particles based on the selection and tailoring of bacterial strains
Applications and Industries• Production of fine particulates of ceramic powders used by industry and in chemical processing applicationsPatents and Patent Applications
ID Number
Title and Abstract
Primary Lab
Date
Patent 7,060,473
Patent
7,060,473
Fermentative process for making inorganic nanoparticles
A method for producing mixed metal oxide compounds includes the steps of: providing a supply of a metal reducing bacteria; providing a culture medium suitable for growth of the bacteria; providing a first mixed metal oxide phase comprising at least a first and a second metal, at least one of the first and second metal being reducible from a higher to a lower oxidation state by the bacteria; and, combining the bacteria, the culture medium, the first mixed metal oxide, and at least one electron donor in a reactor, wherein the bacteria reduces at least one of the first metal and the second metal from the higher to the lower oxidation state to form a second mixed metal oxide phase.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory 06/13/2006
Issued
Technology Status
Technology IDDevelopment StageAvailabilityPublishedLast Updated
UT-B ID 200501521DevelopmentAvailable10/04/201110/04/2011

Contact ORNL About This Technology

To: Nestor Fronco<francone@ornl.gov>