Recent Advances in Smart Gels

A special issue of Gels (ISSN 2310-2861). This special issue belongs to the section "Gel Chemistry and Physics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 September 2024 | Viewed by 611

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Center of Polymer and Carbon Materials of the Polish Academy of Sciences, M. Curie-Skłodowskiej 34, 41-819 Zabrze, Poland
Interests: smart gels; superabsorbent nanogels; biomaterials; bioplastics; polyurethane foams; drug delivery; wastewater treatment

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

“Smart gels” show sudden and reversible phase transition under the influence of external (physical and chemical) stimuli, such as temperature, pressure, pH, ionic strength, mechanical stress, electrical and magnetic fields, light and chemical triggers, etc. In other words, these materials can change their properties in response to small changes in an external condition. On the basis of external stimuli, they are categorized as thermoresponsive, pH-responsive, shear/stress-responsive, electroresponsive, magnetoresponsive, photoresponsive, chemically activated gels, and so on. Owing to this unique property, these smart gels constitute a new generation of materials that have been finely tuned for their use in several industries, namely, but not limited to, pharmaceuticals, tissue engineering, drug delivery, sensors, agriculture, adsorption, petroleum, etc.

To spotlight the possible advancements of smart gels and their applications in several fields, we are pleased to announce a new Special Issue on “Recent Advances in Smart Gels”. This Special Issue focuses on synthetic approaches/methods, structure–property relationships, characterization techniques, simulations, and the application of smart gels in different fields. This Special Issue serves as a pivotal point to publish high-quality research papers as well as comprehensive review articles covering novel and state-of-the-art topics associated with smart gels from theoretical and experimental perspectives.

Both reviews and original contributions are welcome.

Dr. Sunita Ranote
Dr. Marta Musioł
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Gels is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • smart gels
  • bio-based gels
  • synthetic gels
  • stimuli-responsive
  • synthetic appraoches
  • structure–property relationship
  • material characterization
  • technological applicability

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

16 pages, 1866 KiB  
Article
Effect of Gold Nanoparticle Size on Regulated Catalytic Activity of Temperature-Responsive Polymer−Gold Nanoparticle Hybrid Microgels
by Palida Pongsanon, Akifumi Kawamura, Hideya Kawasaki and Takashi Miyata
Gels 2024, 10(6), 357; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels10060357 - 22 May 2024
Viewed by 389
Abstract
Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) possess attractive electronic, optical, and catalytic properties, enabling many potential applications. Poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) (PNIPAAm) is a temperature-responsive polymer that changes its hydrophilicity upon a slight temperature change, and combining PNIPAAm with AuNPs allows us to modulate the properties [...] Read more.
Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) possess attractive electronic, optical, and catalytic properties, enabling many potential applications. Poly(N-isopropyl acrylamide) (PNIPAAm) is a temperature-responsive polymer that changes its hydrophilicity upon a slight temperature change, and combining PNIPAAm with AuNPs allows us to modulate the properties of AuNPs by temperature. In a previous study, we proposed a simpler method for designing PNIPAAm–AuNP hybrid microgels, which used an AuNP monomer with polymerizable groups. The size of AuNPs is the most important factor influencing their catalytic performance, and numerous studies have emphasized the importance of controlling the size of AuNPs by adjusting their stabilizer concentration. This paper focuses on the effect of AuNP size on the catalytic activity of PNIPAAm–AuNP hybrid microgels prepared via the copolymerization of N-isopropyl acrylamide and AuNP monomers with different AuNP sizes. To quantitatively evaluate the catalytic activity of the hybrid microgels, we monitored the reduction of 4-nitrophenol to 4-aminophenol using the hybrid microgels with various AuNP sizes. While the hybrid microgels with an AuNP size of 13.0 nm exhibited the highest reaction rate and the apparent reaction rate constant (kapp) of 24.2 × 10−3 s−1, those of 35.9 nm exhibited a small kapp of 1.3 × 10−3 s−1. Thus, the catalytic activity of the PNIPAAm–AuNP hybrid microgel was strongly influenced by the AuNP size. The hybrid microgels with various AuNP sizes enabled the reversibly temperature-responsive on–off regulation of the reduction reaction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Smart Gels)
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