Carbon dot-polymer nanoporous membrane for recyclable sunlight-sterilized facemasks

Seema Singh, Nitzan Shauloff, Chetan Prakash Sharma, Ran Shimoni, Christopher J. Arnusch, Raz Jelinek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Facemasks are considered the most effective means for preventing infection and spread of viral particles. In particular, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic underscores the urgent need for developing recyclable facemasks due to the considerable environmental damage and health risks imposed by disposable masks and respirators. We demonstrate synthesis of nanoporous membranes comprising carbon dots (C-dots) and poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF), and demonstrate their potential use for recyclable, self-sterilized facemasks. Notably, the composite C-dot-PVDF films exhibit hydrophobic surface which prevents moisture accumulation and a compact nanopore network which allows both breathability as well as effective filtration of particles above 100 nm in diameter. Particularly important, self-sterilization occurs upon short solar irradiation of the membrane, as the embedded C-dots efficiently absorb visible light, concurrently giving rise to elevated temperatures through heat dissipation.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)342-348
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Colloid and Interface Science
StatePublished - 15 Jun 2021


  • Carbon dots
  • Nanoporous membranes
  • Photothermal nanoparticles
  • Self-sterilized facemasks

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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