Silver Nanoparticles Could Be Key to Healthy Hearts
Novel materials are being created by researchers at the University of Buffalo
The silver nanoparticles are part of a new family of materials being created in the laboratory of SUNY Distinguished Professor and Greatbatch Professor of Advanced Power Sources Esther Takeuchi, PhD, who developed the lithium/silver vanadium oxide battery. The battery was a major factor in bringing implantable cardiac defibrillators (ICDs) into production in the late 1980s.
ICD batteries typically last five to seven years. But Dr. E. Takeuchi and her husband and co-investigator, SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor of Chemistry Kenneth Takeuchi, PhD, and Amy Marschilok, PhD, research assistant professor of chemistry, are exploring improved battery systems by fine-tuning bimetallic materials at the atomic level.
Initial results have shown that they can make their materials 15,000 times more conductive upon initial battery use due to in-situ (that is, in the original material) generation of metallic silver nanoparticles. Their new approach to material design will allow for the development of higher-power and longer-life batteries.Their research investigating feasibility for ICD use is funded by the National Institutes of Health, while their investigation of new, bimetallic systems is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.