Blending different polymers in order to produce new engineering material with added value is a standard method in polymer industry. Incompatibility between immiscible polymers is the main challenge in preparing these blends. This incompatibility can result in poor mechanical and morphological properties. Using compatibilizers and nanoadditives are two main methods of compatibilizing immiscible polymer blends.
Environmental pollution is one of the greatest problems that the world is facing today. The conventional detergent and surfactant water based methods are costly, not eco- friendly. Applying photocatalytic coatings that utilize solar energy on the exterior and interior surfaces of buildings is a promising method to tackle air pollution and clean the surfaces with lower cost. Upon sun light and ambient light, after a few chemical reaction, TiO2 nano-particles as a photocatalyst generate reactive agent, which can oxidize organic substances.
Our previous work has shown the promise of monodisperse phytoglycogen for many applications. However, these experiments only scratch the surface of potential uses since the chemistry of the particles (as extracted) is fixed. Nanoparticles offer very high surface areas, and glucose units are easily modifiable, thus there exist a multitude of ways to chemically modify the surface to produce a wide variety of new material properties.
The conventional form of hydrogenated amorphous silicon, prepared through plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition, has proven itself to be a useful material for a wide range of device applications. It has been shown that the hydrogen atoms that reside within hydrogenated amorphous silicon are responsible for its favorable electronic properties, these hydrogen atoms passivating the dangling bonds that are present within this material.
Blending carbonaceous materials with thermoplastic materials can lead to a significant improvement of the resulting electrical, mechanical, thermal, and gas barrier properties compared with the unfilled polymer. Graphene, the name given to a material consisting of two-dimension layers of carbon atoms arranged in a hexagonal lattice, has extraordinary properties which make possible to produce a new class of polymer nanocomposites with significantly improved properties.
The medical marijuana industry has attracted significant attention recently due to its impending legalization in Canada in the coming year. Along with legalization comes the need for accurate and dependable characterization of the components in the product that is to be consumed by the end user. Keystone Labs is a certified cannabis analysis lab with a growing client base. Hence, they are looking to increase their market share by developing a home testing kit that can be used by growers to monitor the plant's chemical composition as it matures.
Organic light emitting diodes, or OLEDs have become a common technology in everyday displays such as mobile phones, laptops, and televisions. These types of devices rely on an OLED structure that uses bottom-emission, meaning that the top of the device consists of a non-transparent backplane, and the light and colours generated in the device are emitted through the transparent, bottom side of the device.
This project is geared towards the development of a cost-effective method to fabricate thin films of carbon materials, such as diamond. The idea is to use solution-based methods coupled to electrochemistry to produce the films. Avenues for the deposition of the film on surfaces of arbitrary shapes will also be explored.
Nanomaterials are the fundamental building blocks of nanotechnology. Despite the advances in nanomaterial synthesis, no reliable technique exists to characterize their physical properties. The key challenge lies with the lack of accurate force and displacement feedback. To tackle the problem, leading researchers from University of Toronto and from Toronto Nano Instrumentation (TNI) Inc. are working together to develop the next generation technology for nanomaterial testing.
The proposed project is a characterization study on chitin nanowhisker nanocomposites. Chitin nanowhiskers are derived from chitin, a naturally occurring biopolymer found in arthropod exoskeletons, and offer great potential for reinforcement and property enhancement once blended with typical engineering plastic matrices. Compared to traditional inorganic fillers such as carbon nanotubes and graphene, chitin nanowhiskers are biocompatible and biodegradable, exhibiting comparable property improvements with none of the downsides of the inorganic materials (i.e. biohazardous, toxic).