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Nanotechnology is a science that grows logarithmically by the day. Gold is an ideal material for it because it is resistant to oxidation and corrosion, and at the nanoscale, can retain its durability. Gold nanoparticles are already being used in the textile and print industries because of the aesthetic properties imparted by gold. Gold is attractive in nanoparticle form, as it will range from red to purple depending on the size of the particles.
Attractiveness aside, gold has been shown to work well even in nano conditions. Gold nanoparticles still have catalytic activity and can be used in various chemical reactions that are important to industry and commerce. Such nanoparticles have a unique surface chemistry that allows adsorption of sulfur-bound molecules. This can allow for assembly of useful, interesting structures from the bottom up.
Gold is currently being pursued as a nanotechnology material of choice. For instance, low resistance nanoparticulate inks can be used as printable inks for flexible electronics. Nanowires can be fashioned out of gold to power the electronic devices of the future. Gold nanoparticulates in colloid form can be used to conduct rapid tests and biomedical assays. Cancer cells can be destroyed and the destruction will be specific and on target because gold nanoparticles can deliver anti-cancer drugs directly to them.
Thiol-stabilized gold nanoparticles can improve the strength of decorative coatings. Paints and textiles with gold nanoparticles have an even more beautiful appearance than conventional textiles and paints. Pollution control and chemical synthesis can be improved through the use of nanoparticulate gold catalysts. Gold nanoparticles can be supported by carbon and used in fuel cells as electrocatalysts.
Gold is already being used in the industry in nanoparticle form. For instance, gold ink is already being used in printers to produce ultra high resolution images. Wool can also be colored using gold nanoparticles. The textile, paint, ink, and electronics industry can certainly benefit from the stability, durability, and malleability of gold, whether in macro or nanoparticle form.
Research still continues into the benefits that gold can bring. With more research into the properties of gold nanoparticles, there will certainly be more vibrant prints, attractive textiles, and efficient electronics in the years to come.