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Magnetic control of heterogeneous ice nucleation with nanophase magnetite: Biophysical and agricultural implications

Kobayashi, Atsuko and Horikawa, Masamoto and Kirschvink, Joseph L. and Golash, Harry N. (2018) Magnetic control of heterogeneous ice nucleation with nanophase magnetite: Biophysical and agricultural implications. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 115 (21). pp. 5383-5388. ISSN 0027-8424. PMCID PMC6003474. http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20180507-132102603

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Abstract

In supercooled water, ice nucleation is a stochastic process that requires ∼250–300 molecules to transiently achieve structural ordering before an embryonic seed crystal can nucleate. This happens most easily on crystalline surfaces, in a process termed heterogeneous nucleation; without such surfaces, water droplets will supercool to below −30 °C before eventually freezing homogeneously. A variety of fundamental processes depends on heterogeneous ice nucleation, ranging from desert-blown dust inducing precipitation in clouds to frost resistance in plants. Recent experiments have shown that crystals of nanophase magnetite (Fe_3O_4) are powerful nucleation sites for this heterogeneous crystallization of ice, comparable to other materials like silver iodide and some cryobacterial peptides. In natural materials containing magnetite, its ferromagnetism offers the possibility that magneto-mechanical motion induced by external oscillating magnetic fields could act to disrupt the water–crystal interface, inhibiting the heterogeneous nucleation process in subfreezing water and promoting supercooling. For this to act, the magneto-mechanical rotation of the particles should be higher than the magnitude of Brownian motions. We report here that 10-Hz precessing magnetic fields, at strengths of 1 mT and above, on ∼50-nm magnetite crystals dispersed in ultrapure water, meet these criteria and do indeed produce highly significant supercooling. Using these rotating magnetic fields, we were able to elicit supercooling in two representative plant and animal tissues (celery and bovine muscle), both of which have detectable, natural levels of ferromagnetic material. Tailoring magnetic oscillations for the magnetite particle size distribution in different tissues could maximize this supercooling effect.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1800294115DOIArticle
http://www.pnas.org/lookup/suppl/doi:10.1073/pnas.1800294115/-/DCSupplementalPublisherSupporting Information
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6003474PubMed CentralArticle
Additional Information:© 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS. This open access article is distributed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License 4.0 (CC BY-NC-ND). Edited by David A. Weitz, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, and approved March 26, 2018 (received for review January 7, 2018). Published ahead of print May 7, 2018. We thank two anonymous referees for useful suggestions on the manuscript. Mr. Hiroshi Nirasawa of the Yatsugatake Chuo Agriculture Training College in Hara Village provided Nagano Japan celery samples. This study was supported by Japan Society for the Promotion of Science KAKENHI Grants JP26630062 and JP16H04276 (to A.K.). Author contributions: A.K. designed research; A.K. and M.H. performed research; A.K., M.H., J.L.K., and H.N.G. contributed new reagents/analytic tools; A.K. and J.L.K. analyzed data; and A.K., J.L.K., and H.N.G. wrote the paper. The authors declare no conflict of interest. This article is a PNAS Direct Submission. This article contains supporting information online at www.pnas.org/lookup/suppl/doi:10.1073/pnas.1800294115/-/DCSupplemental.
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)JP26630062
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)JP16H04276
Subject Keywords:ice crystal nucleation; magnetic supercooling; biogenic magnetite; nanoparticles; food freezing
PubMed Central ID:PMC6003474
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180507-132102603
Persistent URL:http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20180507-132102603
Official Citation:Magnetic control of heterogeneous ice nucleation with nanophase magnetite: Biophysical and agricultural implications Atsuko Kobayashi, Masamoto Horikawa, Joseph L. Kirschvink, Harry N. Golash Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences May 2018, 115 (21) 5383-5388; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1800294115
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:86247
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:07 May 2018 20:51
Last Modified:20 Jun 2018 16:12

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