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Materials and Designs for Small-Scale Propelled Devices Towards Environmental and Biological Applications


For over a decade, microscopic devices which are propelled and therefore active versus inactive nanoparticles have emerged as versatile and novel tools for a variety of applications including environmental and in vivo. In this dissertation, we aim to demonstrate the recent advances in milli and microscale devices by utilizing new designs and especially new materials towards replicating biological functions, becoming more environmentally friendly and more useful in in vivo applications.

In the first section we show how selecting the appropriate set of materials and incorporating them into the structure or on the outside of milli-sized devices can give them capabilities of color-change, self-healing, and birth-like release much like the real-life counterparts from which the inspiration came from.

In the second section we demonstrate the ability to utilize materials which make micromotors not only able to move in biological fluids but become completely transient and disappear without a trace while at the same time studying their time-dependent motion behavior.

The third section describes the use of transient type micromotors in biological settings. We utilize these micromotors to deliver important nutrients to treat anemia, deliver a vaccine and establish an immune response and implement them in standard pill formulations for further integration into common use.

We hope that these developments will help and inspire the community towards implementing these microscale devices in many common applications and possibly disrupting current technologies in the near future.

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