Foiled no more: A review of advancements in producing carbon nanotubes on flexible metal substrates

By Lisa McDonald / August 8, 2023

Growing carbon nanotubes on metal foils rather than traditional silicon or quartz substrates would allow the process to be easily integrated into large-scale manufacturing processes. But metal foils present other challenges, such as reactivity at high temperatures. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory researchers published a review paper summarizing efforts to overcome these challenges.

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High-throughput automated testing platform saves time and energy by placing dozens of samples on same substrate

By Lisa McDonald / July 28, 2023

Automating experiments can help speed up the materials development process. Researchers led by North Carolina State University developed a new high-throughput automated testing system that deposits multiple samples on the same substrate, thus saving time and energy.

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Hands-free defect engineering: Electric fields control motion of ceramic dislocations without need for mechanical loading

By Lisa McDonald / July 25, 2023

While some studies have demonstrated that electric fields and light exposure can affect the motion of dislocations in ceramics, the principal driving force of motion in these cases was mechanical stress. Now, an international group of researchers showed dislocation motion in a single-crystalline zinc sulfide can be controlled using only an external electric field.

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Balancing cost and quality—tradeoffs of creating all-oxide CMCs from fiber bundles with higher filament counts

By Lisa McDonald / June 30, 2023

Balancing cost and quality is an important consideration for manufacturers and researchers looking to commercialize their innovations. Researchers in Germany explored the tradeoffs that come with creating all-oxide ceramic matrix composites from fiber bundles with higher filament counts.

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Maximizing resource use—modified starch aids in selective separation of feldspar and quartz from tailings

By Lisa McDonald / June 27, 2023

Instead of open-pit mines, tailings may become the primary source of feldspar and quartz in the future if the minerals can be selectively extracted from the waste. Researchers in China showed that hydroxypropyl starch can improve the flotation separation of feldspar and quartz.

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Molten salt electrochemical synthesis could improve sustainability of white phosphorus production

By Guest Contributor / April 18, 2023

White phosphorus is a synthetic form of phosphorus used to produce many commodity chemicals. But the conventional process for producing white phosphorus has a high carbon footprint. Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed a molten salt synthesis process for white phosphorus production that is more cost effective and environmentally friendly.

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Introduction to “Advanced sintering” for ACT @ 20

By Jonathon Foreman / April 14, 2023

To celebrate the milestone of the 20th volume of the International Journal of Applied Ceramic Technology, the editorial team assembled a selection of journal papers representing the excellent work from the advanced ceramics community. The focus this month is advanced sintering.

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Adsorption of complex pollutants: Designing hydrogarnets to remove humic substances from water

By Lisa McDonald / March 17, 2023

Humic substances are beneficial to agriculture, but they can aggravate pollution in water by interacting with disinfectants to produce toxic byproducts. Hydrogarnet has shown excellent potential as an adsorbent for humic substances, and researchers in Japan investigated the effects of heat treatments to control hydrogarnet composition and adsorption properties.

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Done in a flash—advancements in the understanding of flash sintering mechanisms

By Jonathon Foreman / March 10, 2023

Understanding the underlying mechanisms of rapid and energy-efficient flash sintering is key to tailoring the materials and processes to meet a wide range of performance requirements. Four recent articles in ACerS journals characterize and quantify some of these atomic-level phenomena.

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Strategies for managing hot spot development during microwave and flash sintering

By Lisa McDonald / March 7, 2023

Chances of local overheating are likely when densifying ceramics through microwave or flash sintering. In a recent paper, researchers in France discuss factors that drive hot spot development and describe possible ways to manage the phenomenon.

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