New Nano-Material Could Revolutionize Solar Panels and Batteries
Tuesday, December 08 2009
"This is beautiful and protean research," says graduate student Lihi Adler-Abramovich, who was part of a team working under Professor Ehud Gazit in TAU's Department of Molecular Microbiology and Biotechnology. "It began as an attempt to find a new cure for Alzheimer's disease. To our surprise, it also had implications for electric cars, solar energy, and construction."
Gazit has been developing arrays of self-assembling peptides made from proteins for the past six years. His lab, in collaboration with a group led by Professor Gil Rosenman of TAU's Faculty of Engineering, has been working on new applications for this basic science for the last two years.
Using a variety of peptides, which are as simple and inexpensive to produce as the artificial sweetener aspartame, the researchers create their "self-assembled nano-tubules" in a vacuum under high temperatures. These nano-tubules can withstand extreme heat and are resistant to water.