Science and Technology

Borosilicate nanoparticles

| Updated on July 04, 2021

Scientists at IIT-Madras have devised a process for producing borosilicate glass nanoparticles, which have a wide range of industrial applications, from resin matrix for dentures to cements and paints, due to their unique properties such as optical clarity, low electrical and thermal conductivity, and biocompatibility. The process that Somashekhar Hiremath and Bindu Madhavi J have designed, called micro-ECDM, is a non-conventional machining process in which material is removed due to spark eroding — namely, melting and chemical etching of the workpiece material. It mainly consists of a beaker that houses an auxiliary electrode as anode, tool electrode as cathode and a workpiece immersed in electrolyte solution. On applying voltage to the electrodes, electric discharge occurs between the tooltip and its surrounding electrolyte, and this is utilised to erode and etch the workpiece material in its vicinity in the form of debris, which are quenched in the surrounding electrolyte to form nano particles. The micro-ECDM process can thus machine features like holes, channels, structures, letterings and textures on engineering materials such as high-speed stainless steel and non-conducting glass.

Published on July 04, 2021

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