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Materials based on Anodic Alumina


Technological Development of Advanced Multifunctional Materials through Tailored Porous Anodic Alumina and Controllable Sol-Gel Derived Films

Tech Area / Field

  • MAN-MAT/Engineering Materials/Manufacturing Technology
  • MAT-COM/Composites/Materials

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Belarussian State University of Informatics and Radioelectronics, Belarus, Minsk

Supporting institutes

  • Moscow State University / Department of Physics, Russia, Moscow\nInstitute of Physics of Microstructures, Russia, N. Novgorod reg., N. Novgorod\nB.I. Stepanov Institute of Physics, Belarus, Minsk


  • University of Oslo / Department of Physics, Norway, Oslo\nUniversity of Manchester / School of Materials / Corrosion and Protection Centre, UK, Manchester\nUniversite Paris-Sud / Centre de Spectrometrie Nucleaire et de Spectrometrie de Masse, France, Orsay

Project summary

The purpose of the project. is development of an ecologically clean technology for fabrication of multifunctional coatings and materials with desired properties on the basis of porous anodic alumina and sol-gel derived films. The effectiveness of the technology will also be examined in generation of coatings and materials for corrosion inhibiting applications, transformation of X-ray irradiation to the visible spectrum, polychromic luminescing images for security of identification cards and remote control of low temperatures.

State of the art. Porous anodic alumina is a unique honeycomb, mesoscopic structure with open pore channels at the centre of each cell; the cells are packed in honeycomb structure [G.E. Thompson, R.C. Furneaux, G.C. Wood, J.A. Richardson, J.S. Goode / Nucleation and growth of porous anodic films on aluminium // Nature. – 1978. – Vol. 272(5652). – P. 433–435]. Such features render porous anodic alumina as an appropriate structure for synthesis of perse types of optically active species within the pore channels, using sol-gel technology. This method was proposed and validated by the project participants [N.V. Gaponenko / Sol-gel derived films in mesoporous matrices: porous silicon, anodic alumina and artificial opals // Synthetic Metals. – 2001. – Vol. 124(1). – P. 125–130]. The regularity of the open pore channels, the ability to tune the pore diameters in nanometer range, the reproducible growth and regular distribution of sol-gel derived films of the desired chemical composition in the tailored pores allow the fabrication of multifunctional film structures for perse applications. The technology for growth of porous anodic alumina, particularly in chromic acid electrolyte, is widely used for corrosion control of commercial alloys. However, in spite of the excellent anticorrosion properties of chromate treatments, their application has become increasingly unacceptable from the health and environmental viewpoint because of their toxic and carcinogenic nature. Presently, much research effort is being focussed on the development of processes for synthesis of effective, environmental-friendly systems to replace the existing chromium-containing systems that is a significant global problem from ecological viewpoint. [Metals Handbook-Volume 5: Surface Cleaning, Finishing, and Coating (9thed.), American Society for Metals, Metals Park, OH (1982)].

Impact on the progress. During the project execution, the technology for synthesis of novel, advanced materials with the required properties, comprising xerogels in porous anodic alumina, will be developed. This novel technology will impact on: (a) materials science engineering due to development of ecologically clean processes for synthesis of corrosion inhibiting coatings; (b) medical diagnostics due to development of effective converters of X-ray irradiation to the visible spectrum, allowing health benefits from reduction of the irradiation doses; (c) superconductor electronics due to development of phosphors for effective, remote thermal control of superconductors; (d) in technology for security of the identification documents through development of multicolour luminescent images that impact in the fight against terrorism.

The project participants. Leading Institution - Belarusian State University of Informatics and Radioelectronics (BSUIR), Institutions- Participants: Institute of Physics of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (IPh NASB), M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Physics Department (MSU), Institute for Physics of Microstructures Russian Academy of Sciences (IPM RAN). The project participants possess experience in the area of sol-gel synthesis, electrochemistry, optical and structural analyses of nano-dimensional materials.

Expected results. Within the implementation of two tasks of the project the following results will be achieved:

  • Technologies for synthesis of xerogels of the required chemical content in porous anodic alumina of controlled morphology; theoretical and experimental data of light scattering from tailored structures; experimental data on luminescence and its temperature quenching for xerogels depending on technology of their synthesis will be developed;
  • Assessment of fabrication technology of the film structure xerogel/porous anodic alumina for application in materials science engineering, medical diagnostics, in the technology of security of the identification documents and other fields.

Application of the project results. Technology to be developed within the project has potential applications in many industrial areas, including:
  • Development of ecologically clean technology for fabrication of corrosion inhibiting coating for materials science engineering;
  • Development of technology for synthesis of multicolour luminescent images (with currently no available analogue) for prevention of falsification of identification cards (ID-cards) and other documents that is of significant importance to combat terrorism;
  • Development of the technology for synthesis of films with strong temperature sensitivity at low temperatures for remote thermal control of the superconductor degradation to be used in technology of superconductor electronics, in particular, in testing of superconductors;
  • Development of X-ray luminescent screens to be used for conception and technology for fabrication of highly sensitive devices of medical diagnostics, detecting X-ray irradiation, that reduce risk of cancer diseases of patients;
  • Development of materials and coatings with new properties thought further development of the technology for electrochemical anodising of aluminium and sol-gel synthesis.

The scientific importance of the project lies in generation of new knowledge concerning light scattering in mesoscopic structures, and enhancement of luminescence and temperature quenching of phosphors. The practical importance of the project lies in the development of the technology for multifunctional materials including the methods of electrochemistry and sol-gel synthesis.

Meeting ISTC Goals and Objectives. The project:

  • Provides “weapons” project participants the opportunity to focus on peaceful activities in (I) the field of material science for development of corrosion inhibiting coatings; (II) multicolour luminescent images for prevention of fraudulent marking identification cards (ID-cards) and other documents; (III) films with strong temperature sensitivity at low temperatures for remote thermal analyses degradation of superconductors; (IV) development of X-ray luminescent screens for the medical diagnostics devices with high sensitivity that reduce risk of cancer diseases of patients; and (V) for development of robust theoretical, optical and structural analyses.
  • Promotes integration of the project participants into the international community through implementation of applied research and development the technologies for peaceful purposes in the fields of environmental protection, medicine and security in the battle against international terrorism.
  • Reinforce the transition of the project participants to market-based economies through development of ecological competitive technologies of synthesis the multifunctional materials.

Project effort. Project duration – 36 months. Total number of person-days of effort of “weapons” scientists and engineers involved in the project – 4517 person/days. The main scope of activities of Participating Institutions are: BSUIR - synthesis of the structures xerogel/porous anodic alumina and photolithography; IPh NASB – luminescence at room temperature and analyses of light scattering in xerogel/porous anodic alumina structures; MSU – analyses of X-ray phosphors under X-ray irradiation, elemental analyses, luminescence at cryogenic cryostat; IPM RAS – luminescence in liquid helium, phase- and structural- X-ray analyses of the samples.

Roles of Foreign Collaborators:

  • information exchange in the course of project implementation;
  • provide analyses to technical reports and comment in them;
  • preparation of joint papers and presentations;
  • provide testing measurements of the samples prepared by Leading Institution using local experimental facilities;
  • participation in joint research, and performing of parallel independent research;
  • consulting in the area of intellectual property, and assistance in promotion of the developed products in a market.

Technical approach and methodology. Preconditions for development of the proposed technologies were made by the project participants. Within the project, the advantages of the sol-gel method will be utilized. They include tailoring the doping components of a gel at the stage of preparation of a sol and synthesis of solid xerogels of the required chemical and phase content in the pores of porous anodic alumina with perse morphology that is controlled at the stage of its growth. Furthermore, the unique optical and technological properties of porous anodic alumina, such as high transparency in a wide optical range, optical anisotropy determined by its mesoscopic honey-comb structure, and compatibility of technological processes of anodic film growth with photolithography will allow generation of knowledge that impact significantly on progress in the area of metal protection from corrosion, medical diagnostics, technology of prevention the identification documents and other fields.

Realisation of the project’s purpose will be achieved with implementation of tasks 1 and 2. Task 1 – development the technology of synthesis the xerogel films of controllable chemical and phase content in porous anodic alumina of tailored morphology. Task 2 – estimation of fabrication technology of the film structures comprising xerogels of perse chemical content in porous anodic alumina of controlled morphology.


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ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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