Author(s): , , ,

Keywords: , , , ,

Abstract: The authors present the synthesis of hollow silica nanospheres (HSNSs) by a template-assisted approach using polystyrene nanospheres as templates. These nanospheres could potentially be used as nano insulation materials due to their low thermal conductivity ~0.02 W/m K. The authors also examined the environmental footprint of these nanospheres by life cycle assessment, and it was found that they possess a high embodied energy. It was thus suggested that new synthetic approaches needed to be investigated before HSNSs could be used as nano insulation materials. The authors suggest that future synthetic approaches should be designed such that chemicals could be recycled and environmentally friendly starting materials could be used.

Reference: ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, 5, 3 (2013) 761-767

DOI: 10.1021/am302303b