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Nanotech Lab 2008 - Mini Bling Gold the Synthesis and...

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Mini Bling: Gold the Synthesis and Analysis of Gold Nanoparticles Kyle J. Simonson Abstract Nanotechnology is the new “buzzword” of chemistry, for this relatively new field of study of tiny materials is virtually uncharted and its potential applications promise to change the world in a very large way; learning about this new field is vital for any student of chemistry. To observe how size and shape affects the color of nano-scale materials, the experiment used hydrogen tetrachoroaurate and sodium citrate to create a colloid of gold nanoparticles, and then various electrolytes were added to small samples of the colloid and observed. To study the colloid further, a UV-Vis Spectrum was taken of the sample and compared to a calculated value from NanoHUB. The results indicate that size and shape does have a sizeable impact on the color and properties of nanomaterials and that as the nanoparticle grows in size, so too does the color (to a higher wavelength). Introduction The word “Nano” actually comes from the word “dwarf” in Greek 1 and is 10 -9 m, or 1/1,000,000,000 meters. Recently, Nanotechnology has vaulted itself to the forefront of modern chemistry, with promises to affect our life on a very macroscopic scale. It has the potential to create new methods of fighting sickness by detecting sickness early, 6 more effectively and efficiently filter water, 1 and even make engines more energy efficient. 1 Referencing a nanoparticle usually means a particle that ranges from 1 to 100 nanometers in length because when objects are below 100 nanometers, they exhibit 1
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distinctive properties from their larger cousins. 2 It is because of these changes in character that they hold such promise: a whole new world of chemistry has yet to be explored. Nanotechnology dates back to ancient times. Metal workers used the effects of gold nano particles to produce spectacular lighting effects on their work. 1 The stained glass windows of Cathedrals and Churches built in the middle ages used gold and silver nano particles to create works of art. However, it was not until the last century that nano research has really begun in earnest. The invention of the scanning tunneling microscope in 1981 allowed users to see individual atoms, paving the way for truly nanoscopic observations. 1 A real breakthrough came in 1985, when scientists working at Rice University discovered what has since been coined the “buckeyball.” 1 The buckyball is essentially a carbon molecule shaped like a soccer ball, and the manipulation of this carbon “ball” may prove extremely beneficial to scientists in all fields. 4 Since the discovery of the buckeyball, enormous amounts of time and money have been poured into funding the field for further research.
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