Aqueous micro/nanogel suspensions remain difficult to sterilize, store, and ship. Current techniques such as freeze-drying and spray-drying have noticeably failed to preserve the structure of gel particles undergoing drying. We invented the microengineered emulsion-to-powder (MEtoP) technology via which a dispersed phase is stabilized and protected in an engineered oil/surfactant continuous phase, followed by freezing and lyophilization. This facile method converts colloidal systems, particularly annealable hydrogel suspensions, to powders that readily revive their properties upon resuspension. The MEtoP technology may open new horizons for soft material processing and set the stage for the high-fidelity conversion of colloids to powders with defined particle distributions for a broad spectrum of advanced applications.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Polymers and Plastics
- Process Chemistry and Technology
- Organic Chemistry