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Tantalum Nanopowder: Nanoparticles are currently being evaluated and used in many fields owing to their excellent diffusion and optical properties, ability to form suspensions and high surface area to volume ratio. Tantalum is highly conductive to heat and electricity and this property have made it the material of choice for electronic capacitors used in telecommunications and hand-held electronic equipment such as laptops and mobile phones.
Tantalum nanoparticles enhance the applications of the material due to their high surface area and ability to be dispersed in a printable ink. These nanoparticles should be stored in cool and dry room to prevent their dispersion performance from being affected by exposure to air.
Due to their peculiar structural characteristics and size effects, nanomaterials exhibit some novel physical and chemical properties which are different from those of the bulk materials and are of great interest both for theoretical study and for potential nanodevice applications. Today, features on the nanometer scale commonly determine the key physical properties of many materials.
Due to the high melting point of tantalum, at 2996 °C and boiling point at 5425 °C, respectively, the preparation of nano-tantalum by physical methods is very difficult. Many chemical methods were used to synthesize tantalum powder from TaCl5 or K2TaF7. The particle size of the tantalum particles prepared from these methods ranges from 1 µm to several hundred um.
Nanoscale Tantalum Nanopowder has been widely studied for a variety of applications. For example, superfine and pliable tantalum powders were needed to improve the quality or reduce package size of capacitors. Reduction in package size allows designers to add higher-capacitance-value parts to existing circuits or to use smaller package size to further miniaturize their circuits.
Properties of Tantalum nanoparticles:
Tantalum Nanopowder is a rare, shiny, gray, dense metal. It is highly ductile and can be drawn into a thin wire. Its chemical properties are very similar to those of niobium. Tantalum is highly corrosion resistant due to the formation of an oxide film. It is an excellent conductor of heat and electricity. The metal has a melting point exceeded only by tungsten and rhenium. Tantalum is one of the five major refractory metals (metals with very high resistance to heat and wear). The other refectory metals are tungsten, molybdenum, rhenium and niobium. Tantalum is considered to be non-toxic.
|Molar Mass||180.94 g/mol|
|Melting point||2996 ° C|
|Boiling point||5425° C|
|Electronic config.||[Xe]4f 145d26s2|
Tantalum Nanopowder is used in the electronics industry for capacitors and high power resistors. It is also used to make alloys to increase strength, ductility and corrosion resistance. The metal is used in dental and surgical instruments and implants, as it causes no immune response.
Applications of Tantalum Nanoparticles
The important application which benefited from the introduction of powder (particle) metallurgy is use of tantalum as bone implants. Porous materials have re-shaped the landscape of bone implants, as they allow for bone in growth and biological fixation, and eliminate implant loosening and related treatment failures. The unique bone-mimicking properties of porous tantalum enabled the use of tantalum as a material for bulk implants, and not only for coatings, as is the case with other porous metals.
Moreover, porous tantalum also facilitates the in growth of soft tissue, including the formation of blood vessels that were found to assemble on the surface and within the structure of the porous tantalum. Also, since tantalum is strongly radiopaque due its high atomic number, this property is widely employed for marking in orthopedics and in endovascular medical devices. Another important development was the production of nanoparticles based on tantalum. These particles have been shown to be superior to iodinated contrast agents for blood pool imaging applications due to their longer circulation time.
Their properties are similar to gold nanoparticles, but are far more cost-effective, and thus, well-positioned to replace gold in regenerative medicine for labeling and tracking of cell grafts through x-ray-based imaging. However, the amount of tantalum nanoparticles that can be taken up by stem cells is not enough to make individual cells visible in x-ray images. Thus, alternative strategies are needed, such as hydrogel or nanofiber scaffolds, which can be loaded with higher concentrations of nanoparticles, to increase the precision of cell deposition and allow tracking under x-ray guidance.