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Other materials stories that may be of interest

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NANOMATERIALS

Researchers pioneer microfluidics-enabled manufacturing of macroscopic graphene fibers

Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute developed a microfluidics-assisted technique for creating high-performance macroscopic graphene fibers. Their technique lets them optimize both thermal/electrical and mechanical properties of graphene fibers.

Nanometer-sized tubes made from simple benzene molecules

University of Tokyo researchers used benzene to create a new kind of carbon nanotube that contains controlled defects to allow for additional molecules to add properties and functions. These tubes could lead to new nanocarbon-based semiconductor applications.

Researchers catalog defects that give 2D materials amazing properties

Researchers at MIT produced a catalog of exact sizes and shapes of holes that would most likely be observed (as opposed to the many that are theoretically possible) when a given number of atoms is removed from an atomic 2D lattice.


ENERGY

Tiny silicon particles could power lithium ion batteries with 10 times more capacity

University of Alberta chemists examined silicon nanoparticles of four different sizes, evenly dispersed within highly conductive graphene aerogels. They found that the smallest particles—just three billionths of a metre in diameter—showed best long-term stability after many charging and discharging cycles.

Cartilage could be key to safe ‘structural batteries’

University of Michigan researchers made a damage-resistant rechargeable zinc battery with a cartilage-like solid electrolyte. Prototype cells can run more than 100 cycles at 90 percent capacity, and withstand hard impacts—even stabbing—without losing voltage or starting a fire.

Discovery of single atom structure leads to more efficient catalyst

Virginia Tech researchers identified the structure of iridium single-atom catalysts for carbon monoxide oxidation. The discovery shows an efficiency rate up to 25 times higher than traditional catalysts made from larger iridium structures or nanoparticles.


BIOMATERIALS

Mimicking brain connectivity with a graphene-carbon nanotube web

Researchers grew carbon nanotubes in and around the pores of a graphene foam to produce a graphene-carbon nanotube web. Cancerous glioma cells exhibited better growth and proliferation throughout this web than throughout traditional graphene foams.

Technique identifies electricity-producing bacteria

MIT engineers developed a microfluidic technique that quickly processes small samples of bacteria and gauges a specific property that is highly correlated with bacteria’s ability to produce electricity. This technique could have broad application in clean energy generation, bioremediation, and biofuels production.

Researchers create new ‘smart’ material with potential biomedical, environmental uses

Brown University researchers developed a 3D printing method for making alginate-graphene oxide structures that are stiffer, more fracture resistant than alginate. The new material could be used as a coating to keep oil and other grime from building on surfaces.


ENVIRONMENT

Keeping roads in good shape reduces greenhouse gas emissions

A study led by Rutgers University found that extending pavement life through preventive maintenance can reduce greenhouse gases by up to 2 percent. The study found thin overlay leads to greatest overall reduction because of a large decrease in road roughness.

AFC Energy powers up world’s first hydrogen electric vehicle charger

AFC Energy, the industrial fuel cell power company, announced successful deployment of CH2ARGE, the world’s first electric vehicle charger based on hydrogen fuel-cell technology. The innovation takes place after 10 years of fuel cell research development.


MANUFACTURING

3D printing 100 times faster with light

Rather than building up plastic filaments layer by layer, University of Michigan researchers lifted complex shapes from a vat of liquid up to 100 times faster than conventional processes. Their method solidifies liquid resin using two lights to control where resin hardens and where it stays fluid.

Proposed engineering method could help make buildings and bridges safer

Researchers at Kanazawa University discovered that dislocations in the arrangement of atoms along the interface between a cementite and a ferrite layer protect the cementite from fracturing under stretching or compression. The researchers believe manipulating dislocations could be a general technique for enhancing ductility.


OTHER STORIES

Brilliant glow of paint-on semiconductors comes from ornate quantum physics

Researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology examined a class of hybrid semiconductors called halide organic-inorganic perovskite and found quantum particles move through the material with ease, creating highly desirable optoelectronic properties.

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