Feeds

Stinky socks get nanotech makeover

A practical application, at last

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The next step in data security

Consumers will soon see the benefits of nanotech research, as a Pennsylvania-based company plans to use the technology to create socks that resist l'odour du fromage.

NanoHorizons has developed a technique for manufacturing nanoparticles (defined as particles smaller than 100nm) of gold and silver. Both metals are already incorporated into materials because of their antibacterial properties, but the manufacturing process is far from simple.

Metals can be mixed into a polymer in their macro form, but this uses a lot of metal which adds cost, weight, and can even change the properties of the material. Using nanoscale particles of the metals has several advantages, not least that because of their smaller size, a greater surface area is exposed with a smaller quantity of the metal.

Dr Stephen Fonash, NanoHorizons chairman, said that while "silver has been used since antiquity for its antimicrobial properties, these are the first commercially available noble metal nanoparticles engineered for use in plastic-based products, making them economically viable for innumerable products and applications".

He explained that the particles are terminated with specific surface chemistries and delivered in organic solvents. This makes them compatible with the polymer manufacturing process. The particles could be incorporated into a wide range of products, as well as socks, including other clothing, shoes, food containers and other plastic products. According to CNET, the company is already working with a sock manufacturer, and expects the products will be on the shelves within a year. ®

Related stories

Scientists send Buckyballs to detox
UK gov awards £1m to bio-terror detector firm
Nanotech aids green hydrogen production

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SCREW YOU, Russia! NASA lobs $6.8bn at Boeing AND SpaceX to run space station taxis
Musk charging nearly half as much as Boeing for crew trips
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Thought that last dinosaur was BIG? This one's bloody ENORMOUS
Weighed several adult elephants, contend boffins
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
India's MOM Mars mission makes final course correction
Mangalyaan probe will feel the burn of orbital insertion on September 24th
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.