The patent's assignee for patent application serial number 803213 is
News editors obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "This invention relates generally to particle fabrication, and more particularly relates to generation of structured microparticles and nanoparticles.
"Known so-called 'bottom-up' approaches for forming particles, such as nanoparticles, generally rely on nucleation, chemical reactions, or self-assembly processes. The particles produced using such approaches are typically characterized by a large dispersion in size and shape distributions, and are generally hampered by particle coalescence and agglomeration during particle growth. Conversely, so-called 'top-down' approaches, such as microfluidics, lithography, and imprint lithography, typically yield larger, mono-disperse particles, but each such approach is generally suited only to a specific material and particle size range that is determined by the underlying kinetics of the process."
As a supplement to the background information on this patent application, VerticalNews correspondents also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent application: "The many limitations of prior approaches for forming particles are overcome with a method for forming particles that employs a fiber. The fiber includes a cladding material that is disposed along a longitudinal-axis fiber length. A plurality of spherical particles are disposed as a sequence along a longitudinal line parallel to the longitudinal fiber axis in at least a portion of the fiber length. The particles include a spherical particle material that is interior to the fiber cladding material and that is different than the fiber cladding material. The particles can thereby be disposed as embedded particles in the cladding material, separated from one another, having a median size between 5 nm and 1 mm.
"In one method for producing particles, there is provided a drawn fiber having a longitudinal-axis fiber length and including at least one fiber core that has a longitudinal core axis parallel to the longitudinal fiber axis. The fiber core is internally disposed to at least one outer fiber cladding layer along the fiber length. The fiber is heated at a heating temperature, T, for a heating time, t, that is sufficient to cause at least one fiber core to break-up into droplets that are sequentially disposed along the fiber core axis. The heated fiber is then cooled to solidify the droplets into spherical particles that are disposed along the fiber core axis over the fiber length, interior to the fiber cladding layer. The particles are disposed as a longitudinal sequence of spherical particles that is parallel to the longitudinal fiber axis.
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