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[Images above] Credit: NIST


A new graphene foam stays squishy at the coldest temperatures

A new graphene-based foam is first material to remain soft and squishy even at deep cryogenic temperatures. Most materials become stiff and brittle in extreme cold. But this foam stays superelastic even when subjected to temperature of liquid helium: –269.15°C.

Graphene gives a tremendous boost to future terahertz cameras

Scientists at ICFO-The Institute of Photonic Sciences developed a graphene-enabled photodetector that operates at room temperature, is highly sensitive, very fast, has a wide dynamic range, and covers a broad range of THz frequencies.

From 2D to 1D: Atomically quasi ‘1D’ wires using a carbon nanotube template

Researchers from Tokyo Metropolitan University used carbon nanotube templates to produce nanowires of transition metal monochalcogenide, which are only 3 atoms wide in diameter. These are 50 times longer than previous attempts and can be studied in isolation, preserving the properties of atomically quasi “1D” objects.

Building a printing press for new quantum materials

Scientists at Brookhaven National Laboratory, Harvard University, and MIT are developing an automated system to catalog atomically thin 2D materials and stack them into layered structures. Called the Quantum Material Press, this system will accelerate discovery of next-generation materials for quantum information science.


Need more energy storage? Just hit ‘print’

Researchers from Drexel University and Trinity College in Ireland created ink for an inkjet printer from MXene, a highly conductive type of 2D material. Recent findings suggest the ink can print flexible energy storage components, such as supercapacitors, in any size or shape.

New discovery makes fast-charging, better performing lithium-ion batteries possible

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute researchers found a way to combat instability in lithium-ion batteries that contain vanadium disulfide in place of cobalt oxide. They covered VS2 flakes with a nanolayered coating of titanium disulfide, and it stabilized the flakes and improved their performance within the battery.

How slippery surfaces allow sticky pastes and gels to slide

Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers developed slippery coatings called liquid-impregnated surfaces that can help get much thick materials to slide without sticking or deforming. The coating could boost efficiency of flow batteries, a battery in which solid electrodes are replaced by a slurry of tiny particles suspended in liquid.


Samsung’s $2,000 folding phone is breaking for some users after two days

Samsung’s $1,980 Galaxy Fold phone is breaking for some users after a day or two of use. The phone has only been given to gadget reviewers, but some of the screens appear to be disconnecting and permanently flashing on or off.

Researchers use 3D printer to print glass

Researchers from Laval University in Canada modified a commercially available 3D printer for glass extrusion. They successfully 3D printed chalcogenide glass, which they say is well-suited for the technique because chalcogenide glass softens at a relatively low temperature compared to other glass.

Defying the laws of physics? Engineers demonstrate bubbles of sand

Researchers at Columbia University and ETH Zurich observed an unexpected Rayleigh-Taylor (R-T)-like instability in which lighter grains rise through heavier grains as “granular bubbles.” R-T instabilities, which are produced by interactions of two fluids of different densities that do not mix, have not been seen before between two dry granular materials.

Lasers make magnets behave like fluids

University of Colorado at Boulder researchers that when you hit a magnet with a short enough laser pulse, the spins within a magnet will no longer point just up or down, but in all different directions, canceling out the metal’s magnetic properties.

Best in snow: New scientific device creates electricity from snowfall

University of California, Los Angeles researchers and colleagues made a silicone device that creates electricity from falling snow. The device can monitor winter sports to more precisely assess and improve an athlete’s performance when running, walking, or jumping.