American Chemical Society
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Controlled Propulsion and Cargo Transport of Rotating Nickel Nanowires near a Patterned Solid Surface

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posted on 2010-10-26, 00:00 authored by Li Zhang, Tristan Petit, Yang Lu, Bradley E. Kratochvil, Kathrin E. Peyer, Ryan Pei, Jun Lou, Bradley J. Nelson
We show that rotating Ni nanowires are capable of propulsion and transport of colloidal cargo near a complex surface. When dissimilar boundary conditions exist at the two ends of a nanowire, such as when a nanowire is near a wall, tumbling motion can be generated that leads to propulsion of the nanowire. The motion of the nanowire can be precisely controlled using a uniform rotating magnetic field. We investigate the propulsion mechanism and the trajectory of the nanowire during the tumbling motion and demonstrate cargo transport of a polystyrene microbead by the nanowire over a flat surface or across an open microchannel. The results imply that functionalized, ferromagnetic one-dimensional, tumbling nanostructures can be used for cell manipulation and targeted drug delivery in a low Reynolds number aqueous environment.