Nano-fertilizer for precision agrichemical delivery and micronutrient enhancement

Researchers from Philip Demokritou's lab at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health have developed core-shell nanoparticles using coaxial electrospraying for smart agrichemical delivery. The multiple stimuli-responsive nanostructures are biodegradable and have tunable release kinetics based on surface hydrophobicity and responsiveness to pH and enzymes. The stable core provides consistent, long-term agrichemical release and the stimuli-responsive outer shell responds to dynamic growth needs. This combination enables both rapid and continuous agrichemical delivery, leading to improved plant growth, enhanced zinc and sodium levels, chlorophyll activity, and energy transfer efficiency.

This work aims to address the inefficiency of agrichemical delivery, which can have significant negative impacts on planetary and public health, and enables the delivery of agrochemicals at the right place, time, and dose. This concept can be significantly expanded to deliver a range of micro- and macronutrients, growth promoters, and antimicrobial agents.

This work has been described in ACS Nano.

Intellectual Property Status: Patent(s) Pending