A nanoscale fuel paves the way for individual autonomous microscale units
Energy is as much a prerequisite to move your limbs as it is to propel a submarine. As we expand our capabilities for active matter at the nanoscale mimicking that found in nature, we need a fuel that can be integrated into it. Active colloids are among the most advanced materials for active matter applications, small-scale "micromotors" exhibiting spontaneous self-assembly and autonomous propulsion in fluid environments. While this self-assembly and their behaviours have been widely studied, they have not been exploited as individual microscale functional units. The EU-funded NanoscAM project is developing a 3D nanofuel made of active nanoparticles that will further our progress towards the realisation of individual self-regulated units.