An EPSRC-funded project under the Manufacturing Advanced Functional Materials scheme to develop manufacturing technologies for the synthesis of nanoparticles for use in healthcare-related applications
In the MAFUMA project we focus on the manufacturing of gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) and iron oxide magnetic nanoparticles (IONPs). These materials have existing applications in diagnostics and therapeutics.
Bespoke monodispersed nanoparticles offer new applications in antimicrobial surfaces (Au NPs plus dye) and in a new hyperthermia treatment for cancer (IONPs). Nanoparticles are conventionally synthesised in relatively small batch reactors. These systems are poorly controllable, leading to products that are hard to reproduce.
The research aims to design and demonstrate a new approach for manufacturing high-value nanomaterials with advanced properties in a way that is controllable and reproducible and that does not involve significant upscaling issues. It does not only consider key physical phenomena (mixing, heat transfer etc.) in nanoparticles synthesis, but also how to account and address related manufacturing challenges from the outset.
In this way, an important benefit of this project is to provide a paradigm shift in nanoparticle synthesis and production and bridge the discovery-manufacturing divide.