Latest News:  
Beijing   Light to moderate rain/Light rain    13 / 8 ℃  City Forecast


Israeli scientists use gold nanoparticles to read fingerprints


16:00, November 07, 2012

JERUSALEM, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- Researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HU) have devised a new method of exposing barely legible fingerprints on wet or dry paper documents.

The method, which produces a crisp black-on-white image of the suspected fingerprint instead of the usual positive image, uses gold nanoparticles and elemental silver to develop the print, in a manner similar to that of developing a photograph, the university said Tuesday in a press briefing sent to Xinhua.

Professors Yossi Almog and Daniel Mandler of HU's Institute of Chemistry headed the research, which promises to make police forensic work a little easier in discerning who has handled such evidential documents as checks, paper currency and notes.

"Since our method relies only on the fatty components in the fingerprints, the sweaty aspects play no role in the imaging process," said Almog.

The professor added that the new technique also alleviate another problem in some investigations and crime scenes: "If paper has become wet, it has previously been difficult to detect fingerprints because the amino acids in the sweat, which are the primary substrate for current chemical enhancement reactions, will be dissolved and washed away by water, whereas the fatty components are barely affected."

According to the university, the conventional technique uses gold particles "which adhere to the amino acid components of the sweat in the fingerprints, and then silver is deposited onto the gold. The result is quite often low-contrast impressions of the fingerprints."

The new method, the researchers said, "utilizes the sebum (an oily substance secreted by the sebaceous glands that helps prevent hair and skin from drying out) from the fingerprints as a medium to avoid this interference. Treatment with a developer containing silver then turns the areas with gold on them black, resulting in a clear, negative image of the fingerprint."

The new method was published in the English-language edition of the journal Angewandte Chemie, published by the German Chemical Society.
Most viewed commentaries

Recommended News
Hospital with five-star facilities open Willys Jeep seen in Tianjin, still works  'Pambassadors' raise funds for panda research
Icebreaker leaves Guangzhou for 29th scientific expedition Robots displayed at Industry Fair in Shanghai Glaze ice and icicles seen in Hami,China's Xinjiang


Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name


Selections for you

  1. China's stealth fighter concept model

  2. PLA Macao Garrison finishes 13th rotation

  3. Unforgettable moments in Nov. (III)

  4. Flight test of unmanned aircrafts conducted

  5. First inter-blood-type liver transplant in China

  6. Harbin Autumn Automobile Exhibition

  7. Embroider best wishes on insoles in Shanxi

  8. China's rich people will reach to 280 million

Most Popular


  1. Commentary: Hot money needs cooling
  2. Smart solutions for better city, better life
  3. China remains an 'engine' in global economy
  4. M&A of listed companies gaining steam
  5. Is 'culture' inferior to 'commercialization'?
  6. Chinese liquor makers "sober up" over bans
  7. Strength of Chinese culture lies in understanding
  8. Securing China's e-commerce growth
  9. Hammered ore prices threaten Chinese iron miners
  10. CNN Beijing chief: China's challenges, opportunities

What’s happening in China

Landmark building should respect the public's feeling

  1. Herders, sheep flock move to winter pasture
  2. First inter-blood-type liver transplant in China
  3. HIV patient to sue hospital over cancer op refusal
  4. Test in intelligent vehicle for food detection
  5. Smart card, dumb refund rules