Gold minting, an ancient craft dating back to Ancient Egypt, has been revived by researchers from the University of South Florida, Clemson University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. By compressing nanoscopic gold ingots into two-dimensional sheet molds, the scientists replicated the complex process of gold coinage at the nanoscale.
The study, titled “Nanoscale Goldbeating: Solid-State Transformation of 0D and 1D Gold Nanoparticles to Anisotropic 2D Morphologies,” was recently published in the journal PNAS Nexus. It explores the world of nanoscale metallic deformation and provides insights into the formation of 2D gold leaves. This breakthrough could have significant implications for nanotechnology, materials science, and various industries such as renewable energy, quantum computing, and nanomedicine.
“We were intrigued by the idea of borrowing ancient crafts for modern nanofabrication processes,” said Michael Tsai Wang, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at USF. “The ability to fabricate two-dimensional thin films from nanoparticles opens new horizons in nanotechnology and materials science as we continue to look for environmentally friendly ways to produce gold at USF.”
The researchers found that the shape, size and order of the precursor nanoparticles play a crucial role in determining the final 2D morphology of the gold leaves. This nanofabrication method allows precise control over the shape, cross-sectional size and thickness of the gold leaf, opening up new possibilities for a wide range of applications.
“Creating a solid-state 2D transformation method is just the starting point,” said Md Rubaiyat-E Tanjil, a doctoral student in USF’s Department of Mechanical Engineering and first author of the paper. “Its versatility extends beyond gold to a wide variety of materials. By sharing our results with the scientific community, we look forward to expanding our understanding of nanoscale deformation of metals and discovering new scientific breakthroughs.”
The potential of this technique is not limited to gold; it can be applied to other materials as well. The researchers believe their results will contribute to the creation of a broad palette of nanocrystals and nanometals that will revolutionize various industries and technologies.
– “The ability to fabricate two-dimensional thin films from nanoparticles opens new horizons in nanotechnology and materials science as we at USF continue to look for environmentally friendly ways to produce gold.” – Michael Cai Wang, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at USF.
– Its versatility extends beyond gold to a variety of materials. By sharing our results with the scientific community, we look forward to deepening our understanding of nanoscale metallic deformation and discovering new scientific insights.” – Md Rubaiyat-E Tanjil, a doctoral student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at USF.
Gold minting is a centuries-old craft that originated in ancient Egypt more than five millennia ago. The meticulous thinning of scattered gold to a leaf-like woven state has adorned masterpieces throughout history, such as the tombs of Thebes and Saqqara. This ancient process has left an indelible mark on the art and jewelry of different cultures.
The study, conducted by scientists from the University of South Florida, Clemson University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, opens up new possibilities for nanotechnology and materials science. The ability to manipulate nanoscale gold in the form of two-dimensional plates allows for precise control over its shape and size, leading to advances in various fields such as renewable energy, quantum computing and nanomedicine. The results of this research have the potential to revolutionize industry and pave the way for exciting future applications.