The use of various antibacterial coatings has not surprised anyone for a long time, since this technique is widely known and has long been used in modern medicine. However, its traditional formats somehow require the use of either very intense light or ultraviolet rays to activate its antibacterial properties, which can be simply dangerous for the end user. That is why, in order to remove this unpleasant moment, a team of talented researchers from University College London presented their new, improved development of an antibacterial coating that uses ordinary light to activate its properties.
The whole point here is to use the smallest particles of gold, modified in a special chemical way for the correct and uninterrupted interaction with the main group of polymers that make up the coating itself – in addition, a special chemical paint called violet crystal is also used here. Under normal conditions, this paint by itself perfectly copes with the killing of dangerous bacteria, but for this it needs to be activated using ultraviolet rays – and through the use of the mentioned gold particles in the basis of the polymer, experts were able to make the paint work using ordinary light, safe for humans intensity, while emitting hydrogen peroxide instead of the traditionally encountered reactive oxygen.
As preliminary laboratory tests have shown, hydrogen peroxide copes with the destruction of DNA and the structures of harmful bacteria no worse than reactive oxygen, providing also a significantly lower hazard index for the user directly.
In addition, experts conducted several more tests and found that the systematic use of gold nanoparticles even in the most inert polymers of this type can significantly improve the energy efficiency of the antibacterial coating, which may be a key factor in the subsequent improvement of the chemical structure of antibacterial coatings – even if developers prefer to experiment with relatively cheap options.