Naturally formed in the Earth over millions of years, halloysite nanotubes are unique and versatile nanomaterials that are formed by surface weathering of aluminosilicate minerals and are composed of aluminum, silicon, hydrogen and oxygen.
Halloysite nanotubes are ultra-tiny hollow tubes with diameters typically smaller than 100 nanometers (100 billionths of a meter), with lengths typically ranging from about 500 nanometers to over 1.2 microns (millionths of a meter).
Our team of scientists and researchers are developing methods of separating out the nanotubes and processing them for use in numerous commercial applications, such as additives in polymers and plastics, electronic components, cosmetics, and home and personal care products.
A bundle of NaturalNano halloysite nanotubes
compared to the width of a human hair
Halloysite nanotubes imaged at Cornell University
PROPERTIES OF HALLOYSITE NANOTUBES
The elements are: Aluminum, silicon, hydrogen, oxygen.
The functional characteristics desired for specific applications can be controlled through selection of nanotube diameter and length.
Diameters typically range from about 40nm to 200nm and in a variety of lengths, allowing for a wide range of applications.Halloysite nanotubes can be coated with metallic and other substances to achieve a wide variety of electrical, chemical, and physical properties.
They can be filled with such things as active ingredients including many that are used for cosmetics, household and personal care products, pesticides, pest repellents, pharmaceuticals and other agents that could benefit from extended release.
NaturalNano has identified additional applications, not yet publicly disclosed, for these unique and abundantly available materials.
Halloysite nanotubes imaged at Alfred University with a transmission electron microscope
THE SEPARATION CHALLENGE
While halloysite nanotubes are found in large quantity in the Earth, the process of mining and separating them is technically challenging. NaturalNano scientists and engineers are developing patent-pending proprietary processes for extracting, separating, and classifying specific types of halloysite nanotubes from halloysite clay.