Don’t ever rob a CSIRO scientist

Most scientists are your typical mild mannered nerd – well, at least the ones I have met.

They are usually more interested in whatever research they happen to be interested in and will happily spend their days thinking about metal-organic framework crystals which bind to proteins and wondering what they can do with it.

Say waahhh??

OK, OK, there was this scientist who had his house broken into and of course the police came around and dusted everything for fingerprints.

Being a curious sort of fellow (he is a scientist after all) he watched the police at work.

I mean, it takes ages for prints to be taken, and sometimes, items which might hold prints need special treatment which also take time, etc etc.

That must have had been when the scientist probably thought,”There must be an easier and better way”.

Well, criminals of the world, read the following article and weep 🙂



Sorry guys, the gizmo site is giving me problems with pics and YouTube, so I suggest having a lookee see at the original article as well.

The original article


Glowing fingerprints to highlight criminals


Australia's CSIRO has come up with a bright idea for gathering fingerprint evidence

Australia’s CSIRO has come up with a bright idea for gathering fingerprint evidence

Image Gallery (4 images)

Fingerprinting powders are still the go-to tool for investigators, both real and fictional. However, instead of oils, some fingerprints only leave a residue of amino acids and other compounds that fingerprinting powder doesn’t adhere to very well. A new technique developed at Australia’s CSIRO not only reveals fingerprints in cases where dusting won’t, but makes them glow under UV light.

After his house was broken into, CSIRO materials scientist Dr Kang Liang saw first hand how important fingerprinting is for law enforcement agencies. Dusting for prints is still the most common technique used by investigators, but there are a number of different methods to collect latent (hidden) fingerprints from a crime scene.

Superglue fuming or the use of chemical reagents are widely used when dusting fails, but these can be time consuming or will usually require the object being examined to be sent to a lab, which isn’t always possible. Liang wondered if new materials might provide another alternative that could overcome the shortcomings of current techniques.

He turned to metal-organic framework (MOF) crystals that, when applied to surfaces in a drop of liquid, rapidly bind to fingerprint residue, including proteins, peptides, fatty acids and salts. In around 30 seconds, this results in an ultrathin coating that forms an exact copy of the fingerprint and glows under UV light, enabling high resolution images to be easily captured for analysis. Different colored fingerprints are also possible by altering the chemistry of the solution.

“Because it’s done on the spot, a digital device could be used at the scene to capture images of the glowing prints to run through the database in real time,” says Dr Liang, who added, “because it works at a molecular level it’s very precise and lowers the risk of damaging the print.”

Having successfully tested it on nonporous surfaces, such as window and wine glass, metal blades and plastic light switches, the CSIRO says the technique offers numerous advantages for forensics teams. These include the speed with which the fingerprints are revealed, their brightness under UV light, the fact no dust or fumes are produced by the process, and the low cost of the MOF crystals.

In addition to fingerprinting, the CSIRO believes the technique could find applications in other fields, such as the development of biomedical devices and drug delivery. However, for the time being it is the forensics potential that is to be pursued, with the organization looking to partner with law enforcement agencies in applying the technique.

The team’s paper describing the new fingerprinting method appears in the journal Advanced Materials and Dr. Liang outlines the technique in the video below.

Source: CSIRO


1 comment for “Don’t ever rob a CSIRO scientist

  1. Mercy
    October 21, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    I am wondering such advanced technology can trace the robbers who wear gloves?

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