BIOMINERALIZATION

-FROM MODEL BIO-MINERAL FORMATION TOWARD BIOGENIC PROCESSES

Biomineralizing organisms are superior in controlling mineral growth. The controls they use are deceptively simple (e.g. ions, polymers, electrons), however, when we seek to mimic such interactions e.g. for bio inspired approaches to materials design and synthesis, we are hindered by the lack of knowledge about the underlying molecular-scale mechanisms these polymer-mineral interactions rely upon. I am particularly interested in obtaining quantitative insight into the underlying mechanistic parameters that essentially control the polymer-mineral interactions. 

ANCIENT POLYSACCHARIDE

The production of polymers for controlling calcite growth is a well-known approach in biomineralising organisms. Numerous studies have shown that polymers significantly influenced the growth rate and morphology of CaCO3 but little is known about how the polymers are actually controlled by the organisms. I have made a series of studies showing that an ancient polysaccharide (PS) extracted from 60 Ma chalk still inhibit calcite growth, modeled its complexation strength and that cations can control the effect of the ancient polysaccharides confirming that these processes have been in place for at least 60 million years.

Quantifying cation functionality

Imaging PS and calcite

Ancient polysaccharide

Imaging cation functionality

POLYMER-CALCITE INTERACTIONS

Calcite-ethanol

-Stabilization of terraces

CaCO3-ethanol

Spherulitic Growth, Polymorph Stabilization,

and  Morphology Change

ethanol calcite.png

Calcite-polysaccharides

-The role of composition and branching

ACC-polymers

ACC.png

MIMICKING NACRE

On going work by Anne Rath Nielsen

-PhD student

Anne.png

Peptoid nanosheets

Templated calcite growth

-nucleation thermodynamics 

© 2019 by Karina K. Sand

karina.sand@gmail.com

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