Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Member

Dr. George Chumanov, Committee Chair

Committee Member

Dr. R. Kenneth Marcus

Committee Member

Dr. Jeffrey N. Anker

Committee Member

Dr. William T. Pennington


Nanomaterials have been a hot research topic for past decades due to their unique optical, electronic, catalytic and mechanical properties. This dissertation aims to investigate selected aspects of nanomaterial synthesis, application and protein nanomaterial interactions. We target to improve nanomaterials synthesis, explore their novel applications and study their potential hazardous. Chapter 1 describes new hydrothermal synthesis of carbon nanofibers from cellulose nanocrystals. The described hydrothermal synthesis from cellulose is an environmentally friendly method that has commercial potential for inexpensive production of carbon nanofibers. Chapter 2 describes the application of poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) stabilized 2D AgNP array for measuring changes of bulk refractive index and sensing of selected volatile organic compound (VOC). The PMMA stabilized 2D AgNP array gives linear response to bulk refractive index changes and can be re-used after rinsing with water. Responsive polymer films were spin-coated on PMMA stabilized 2D AgNP array to fabricate the nanocomposite films. These nanocomposite films exhibit sharp coherent plasmon coupling, spectra position of which is affected by the changes of local dielectric environment when interacting with VOC vapors. Chapter 3 describes studies related to the interaction of AgNP and AuNP with cytoskeleton protein (actin and tubulin), immune system protein (complementary component 3) and plasma protein (albumin and fibronegen). The nanoparticle protein interaction is influenced by both nanoparticle and protein sizes. The work presented here establishes basic knowledge related to nanomaterial synthesis and their advanced applications.



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