Nanomaterials

I th‘ink’ we have a solution: Researchers explain mechanism behind uniform deposition of 2D materials for printed electronics

By Lisa McDonald / August 28, 2020

In 2017, an international team of researchers led by the University of Cambridge found a certain alcohol-based solvent allowed uniform deposition of inks containing 2D materials—a result important to advancing printed electronics. Now, the team has proposed a mechanism to explain their finding.

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Achieve dynamic control of light—liquid crystals offer way to reconfigure optical properties of metalenses

By Lisa McDonald / August 25, 2020

Metalenses are an emerging technology for controlling light that could someday replace traditional lenses. However, they generally lack dynamic control over their optical properties and are limited to passive optical applications. Researchers from the United States and Italy investigated infiltrating metalenses with liquid crystals to allow for dynamic control.

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Trap-and-zap degradation: Photocatalysis techniques for destroying antibiotic resistant bacteria and genes

By Lisa McDonald / August 4, 2020

Antibiotic resistant bacteria and antibiotic resistance genes are an increasing concern in water contamination. Rice University researchers are exploring photocatalysis techniques to destroy antibiotic resistance genes, and two papers published this year explore “trap-and-zap” strategies.

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Identify molecular ‘fingerprints’: Proposed graphene-based nanofocused sensor may improve molecular analysis

By Lisa McDonald / July 24, 2020

Mid-infrared spectroscopy is an important tool for nondestructive analysis of molecules, but it cannot analyze nanometric volumes very well. One way to improve nanometric analysis is through a technique called nanofocusing, and researchers in Spain and Russia proposed an improved nanofocusing technique using graphene.

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How effective is that mask? Depends on what materials it is made of

By April Gocha / July 21, 2020

There is no shortage of options available when shopping for nonmedical face masks, yet most provide little information about their filter efficiency and breathability—important considerations for a mask that is both efficient and comfortable. But a recent study offers more complete data on the performance of an array of common materials.

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Controlling inflammation—graphene quantum dots may help treat ulcerative colitis

By Lisa McDonald / June 23, 2020

To treat autoimmune diseases, researchers are actively identifying and developing materials that provide control over the immune response. Researchers in Korea found graphene quantum dots may provide an effective treatment for inflammatory bowel diseases.

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Butter-like ceramic interlayer may solve interface instability of solid-state batteries

By April Gocha / June 19, 2020

Scientists at Chalmers University of Technology and Xi’an Jiaotong University developed a new ceramic interlayer—a butter-like mixture of glass-ceramic nanoparticles within an ionic liquid—that provides adequately high ionic conductivity, high thermal stability, and low interfacial resistance to potentially make solid-state batteries a commercial reality.

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Graphene may be the key material to smooth out carbon fiber’s high price

By April Gocha / June 12, 2020

A team of researchers found adding a small amount of graphene can improve the structural alignment of spun carbon fibers, reinforcing their strength—and providing the potential to produce much more inexpensive carbon fiber materials.

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Fluorescing boron nitride nanotubes provide look at material’s motion in solution

By Lisa McDonald / June 5, 2020

Understanding how nanotubes move in solution is useful for both processing the material and for application in fluid environments, such as the body. Researchers at Rice University investigated how boron nitride nanotubes move in solution and found they behave like rigid rods, just like carbon nanotubes.

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Not just the edges—defects impart electrocatalytic properties to entire graphene surface

By Lisa McDonald / May 29, 2020

Defects in a material’s structure offer scientists a way to alter certain material properties. In a new study, three researchers in Russia investigate how different defects in graphene alter the material’s electron transfer kinetics.

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