New Materials for the Technologies of the Future
Today’s scientists are using increasingly clever techniques to make fascinating new materials—from ultra-small particles to smart thin films that can be used in everything from wearable electronics to diagnostic tools in health care.
Dr. José Moran-Mirabal, Canada Research Chair in Micro- and Nanostructured Materials, is pioneering methods to make functional structures from materials as varied as metallic films and cellulose.
Moran-Mirabal has developed simple, inexpensive, yet powerful ways to structure materials that can be used as components in electronic devices, transforming the way sensors are made. For example, by integrating bio-membranes into micro- and nanostructured materials, he is developing new ways to study them and diagnose infectious diseases.
Moran-Mirabal and his research team have also established a new way to give cellulose—the Earth’s most abundant organic polymer—new functionality and produce novel materials. The ability to tune various properties of cellulose is a critical step in unlocking the potential of nanostructured cellulose. Using chemically modified cellulose, Moran-Mirabal and his team are developing new paper-based sensors for environmental pollutants, new porous materials that can capture targeted molecules, and new solutions for the 3D bioprinting of cellular constructs.
Ultimately, Moran-Mirabal’s work will have major impacts in fields ranging from environmental monitoring to biological research to health care.