Self cleaning surfaces

A team at the University of New South Wales is developing new coatings they hope will be used for self-cleaning surfaces in hospitals and the home.
Led by Professor Rose Amal and Professor Michael Brungs of the ARC Centre for Functional Nanomaterials, a research team is studying tiny particles of titanium dioxide currently used on outdoor surfaces such as self-cleaning windows.

The particles work by absorbing ultraviolet light below a certain wavelength, exciting electrons and giving the particles an oxidising quality stronger than any commercial bleach.

These nanoparticles then kill microbes and break down organic compounds. And because surfaces coated with titanium dioxide have another property called 'superhydrophilicity', meaning droplets do not form, water runs straight off the surface, washing as it goes.

Source: news.softpedia.comAdded: 8 February 2006