Autonomously motile catalytic nanomotors by bubble propulsion

J. G. Gibbs, Y. P. Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

298 Scopus citations


A bubble propulsion model based on catalyzed hydrogen peroxide decomposition and momentum change via O2 bubbles detaching from the catalytic surface is proposed to explain the autonomous motion of catalytic nanomotors. The propelling force closely depends upon the surface tension of the liquid as well as the bulk concentration of hydrogen peroxide, and the model predictions are supported by the experimental data of Pt-coated spherical silica microbead motors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number163104
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number16
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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