Air-filled polyvinyl alcohol capsules in sizes ranging from 3-4 µm are produced in Surflay labs. Thanks to a special cross-linking procedure, these bubbles are stable for months, hydrophilic and uncharged. Due to their low density, they slowly float in water to the top.
Some applications / possibilities:
- These microbubles are excellent tools for cell-sorting
- Contrast agents for medical imaging
- In combination with Layer-by-Layer coatings, further surface functions can be added
- Air in the bubbles can also be exchanged with water in order to create e.g. microreactors
Image: Fluorescent-microscope image of air-filled microbubbles labelled with Rhodamine (image size 40 µm x 40 µm)
The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Community's Sixth Framework Programme under grant agreement number 033700 - S.I.G.H.T.