ESM faculty and researchers have developed a novel technique for the self assembly of three-dimensional mesoscopic structures by employing magnetic fields in flows with magnetic liquids (or ferrofluids). Unlike many other forces, a magnetic force is effective even from a distance, permitting action at a distance and it is localized. The competition between the magnetic force and fluid flow enables unique self assembled ferrofluid structures. The group has assembled colloidal nanoparticles into aggregates with well-controlled sizes and shapes. They have created permanent structures with a fast cure silicone elastomer. Their results provide a basis for developing effective self assembly techniques for various engineering applications.
BLACKSBURG, Va., Aug. 31, 2004 – by: Ranjan Ganguly, Ashok Sinha, and Professor Ishwar K. Puri