Characterization

SNL, Pitt discover salt’s ability to “stretch” at nano level

By / June 29, 2009

Conventional thinking says that a block of salt can’t stretch, but researchers from Sandia National Laboratories and the University of Pittsburgh are saying they aren’t so sure anymore. In an article published in Nanoletters, members of the group describe how they were poking around a small piece of salt with an interfacial force microscope when…

Read More

Miscellaneous industry headlines

By / June 24, 2009

SCI Engineered Materials receives $1 million thin film solar order Thresher Industries selects the Cal Poly’s materials engineering program to set up testing protocol Bekaert introduces one-piece rotatable AZO target at Intersolar North America 2009 Natural History Museum of London acquires an Asylum MFP-3D Stand Alone AFM

Read More

Aerogel has potential as tunable waveplate

By / June 22, 2009

A multinational team has published a paper that suggests aerogels could be used as tunable waveplates “in a broad spectral range.” Pradeep Bhupathi, Rodica M. Martin, Lukas Jaworski, David B. Tanner and Yoonseok Lee from the University of Florida (Gainesville, Fla.), Jungseek Hwang from the Pusan National University (Busan, Republic of Korea), Jackson Blankstein from…

Read More

Video of the week – SLAC’s X-ray laser achieves “first light”

By / June 17, 2009

Materials research got a great new tool in late April when the Linac Coherent Light Source high-energy laser came to life at the SLAC National Accelerator Lab in Menlo Park, Calif. The LCLS provides the world’s brightest, shortest pulses of “hard” X-rays that will be used for studying and understanding the arrangement of atoms in…

Read More

Video of the week – Cracking a Safe With Glass Relockers

By / June 7, 2009

Never heard of “glass relockers”? That’s okay. Most people haven’t. Relockers are a category of devices intended to block a burglary of a safe. As their name implies, they relock a safe after the primary lock is cracked. A glass relocker is based on burying a piece of tempered glass within the walls of a…

Read More

Europium’s superconductivity discovered

By / June 7, 2009

A duo from Washington University in St. Louis reports they have for the first time found a way to tap superconductivity properties of europium. In work funded by the materials research division of NSF, WUSTL professor James Schilling and then-doctoral student Mathiewos Debessai found that europium becomes superconducting at 1.8 K (-456°F) and 80 GPa…

Read More

New method for dating ceramic materials

By / June 7, 2009

Carbon dating has been used for decades to provide accurate ages of ancient organic materials. Now archeologists have a similar – and fairly simple – technique for accurately dating heat-fired ceramic materials: rehydroxylation dating. The method exploits the ceramic property of chemically reacting with atmospheric moisture after firing. This reaction causes the material to very…

Read More

ACerS launches new glass research journal

By / May 31, 2009

After nearly a year of behind-the-scenes planning, the American Ceramic Society just announced that it is launching a new journal on advanced glass research. This new peer-reviewed quarterly will be called the International Journal of Applied Glass Science. The journal’s debut is timely as new generations of glass and glass-related materials are increasingly being called…

Read More

71 university-based nuclear projects get DOE funding

By / May 14, 2009

The DOE says it is going to be shipping off $44 million over the next three years to 31 schools for 71 nuclear energy R&D projects. The funding is coming under the auspices of DOE’s Nuclear Energy University Program. The goal, of course, is to figure out a way to improve the use of nuclear…

Read More

Sporian snags AF contract for high-temp sensor

By / May 1, 2009

The Air Force has awarded MEMS sensor maker Sporian Microsystems a contract to conduct research using the firm’s “polymer derived ceramic as a non-planar, conformal, thin film, high temperature sensor.” The AF wants a sensor system that can monitor the temperature and strain in aircraft turbines. Temperatures in these critical materials often are well in…

Read More