Nanoporous Membranes With Tunable Molecular Separation

Novel membranes with selectivity that can be switched dynamically with the help of light have been developed by researchers at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and Universit├Ąt Hannover. Azobenzene molecules were integrated into membranes made of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). Depending on the irradiation wavelength, these azobenzene units in the MOFs adopt a stretched or angular form. This makes it possible to dynamically adjust the permeability of the membrane and the separation factor of gases or liquids. [Read More]

Light Can Mold and Move Hydrogels

Using only light, hydrogels and be moved around and re-shaped, computer simulations done at the University of Pittsburgh have shown. Animals like the octopus and cuttlefish that transform their shape depending on their environment have long been the subject of interest for researchers. This is because mimicking similar biological responses in non-living organisms would have considerable implications in the medical arena. Using hydrogels, which are the materials that constitute most contact lenses and microfluidic or fluid-controlled technologies, such a biomimetic response has now been demonstrated. [Read More]