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Scientists develop nanochannel with super-fast ion transportation

A group of South Korean scientists discovered that a nanochannel smaller than 5 nanometers can act as a better transporter of ion, the science ministry said Thursday, expanding new horizons for the nanotechnology sector as a whole.

The team led by Han Chang-soo of Korea University successfully manufactured a 3.6-nanometer high graphene nanochannel that has 115 times greater ionic conductivity than conventional nanochannels, the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning said.

(Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning)
(Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning)

"Theoretical studies predicted that the hydrophobic nanochannel could transport water and gas much faster, but experimental studies in nanochannels are rarely explored," the researchers said in a paper. "This device has been extensively researched for various applications such as biology, energy conversion, active ion gated control, and rectified ion transport.

The ministry said the findings showed a new paradigm in sectors such as seawater desalination, energy harvesting, and ion transistor, where nanochannels are often used.

The research was funded by the science ministry and the findings were published in the latest edition of the journal "Advanced Materials." (Yonhap)

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