• Kotov LAB

  • Supraparticles

  • Helical Assembly

  • Kirigami Optics

  • Artificial nacre

  • Gold nanoparticle composite

Our goal is to understand the multifaced roles of nanostructures in Nature.

Practical implementations will follow.


Welcome to Biomimetic Nanostructures!

The biological nanocomponents of living organisms have surprisingly many similarities with inanimate inorganic nanomaterials. This is because physicochemical mechanisms governing the solution dynamics of seemingly different classes of nanoscale structures have a lot in common. We identify, elucidate, and implement both similarities and differences in their behavior and functions, which requires the in-depth knowledge of different disciplines and open mind.

The potential for engineering implementations of such materials are abundant. For instance, the parallels between fibrillating proteins and chain-forming nanoparticles, enabled recreation of self-organized composites with previously unknown optical, electrical, and mechanical properties needed for both optoelectronics and biomedical implants.

In another example, replication of the brick-and-mortar structure of tough iridescent seashells using layer-by-layer assembly and other techniques led to a family of biomimetic composites made from clay, graphene, cellulose, etc. They combine mechanical robustness, high conductivity, and rapid ion transport. These nanocomposites enable the construction of a large family of energy storage devices.

Our current studies are aimed at further development of experimental, theoretical, and computational toolbox of biomimetic nanostructures. Some of the rapidly emerging topics in this area include chiral inorganic nanomaterials and biosimilar inorganic organelles. The practical reasons to undertake this research include the biomimetic catalysis of ‘hard’ reactions, development of new antimicrobial agents, and development of chiral photonics.

Appreciating the difficulties of these problems, we collaborate with colleagues around the globe. We value creativity, integrity, and tenacity in every person with whom we work.

Thank you for visiting our website!

Nicholas A. Kotov

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