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[Images above] Credit: NIST


Developing a model critical in creating better devices

Virginia Tech researchers developed a computational model that helps predict behavior of water at surface of hexagonal boron nitride, a compound commonly used in cosmetic products. Prior to development of this model, understanding molecular-level structure of water at the contact surface with hexagonal BN proved very challenging, if not impossible.

New method proposed for studying hydrodynamic behavior of electrons in graphene

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute researchers developed a new method to more accurately demonstrate liquid-like electron behavior in graphene. Their calculations show that by oscillating voltage, researchers can more accurately identify and measure the vortexes created and the hydrodynamic behavior of electrons.


Solar cells (like people!) work better with caffeine

Researchers led by University of California, Los Angeles added caffeine to perovskite solar cells and discovered caffeine made them more efficient at converting light into energy, while remaining stable.


Coal could yield treatment for traumatic injuries

Scientists at Rice University, the Texas A&M Health Science Center, and The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston found coal-derived graphene quantum dots, when modified with a polymer, are effective antioxidants. They could lead to a therapy for people who suffer traumatic brain injuries, strokes, or heart attacks.

New graphene-based material developed for medical implants

A group of scientists developed a new material for biomedical applications by combining a graphene-based nanomaterial with hydroxyapatite, a commonly used bioceramic in implants. They found the combination enhances mechanical strength and provides better in vivo imaging and biocompatibility without changing its basic bone-like properties.


How to purify water with graphene

Scientists from National University of Science and Technology “MISIS” and colleagues found graphene is capable of purifying water without further chlorination, by “capturing” bacterial cells and forming flakes that can be easily extracted from the water.

Researchers create artificial mother-of-pearl using bacteria

University of Rochester researchers invented an inexpensive and environmentally-friendly method for making artificial nacre using bacteria. Because production does not require complex instruments, it holds promise for creating nacre for use in civil engineering applications, protective coatings for erosion control, or for conservation of cultural artifacts.


Breakthrough lowers the footprint of making both concrete and fresh water

New York University Abu Dhabi researchers showed synthesizing magnesium oxide in brine into a cement-like substance could lower the building industry’s associated emissions both by reducing the amount of carbon needed to produce cement, and by the cement over time pulling excess carbon from the atmosphere.

Simulating the formation of ASR gels

Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology-hosted Concrete Sustainability Hub shed new light on conditions, mechanics, and protracted timelines surrounding alkali-silica reactivity in concrete. They observed a reduction in the volume of ASR gels as it calcifies, which offers insight into why ASR causes concrete failure.

Taiwan introduces new formulation of reinforced concrete

Researchers at Taiwan’s National Center for Research on Earthquake Engineering successfully developed a new type of reinforced concrete made especially for high-rise buildings. The new type of composite reinforced concrete is said to be 2.4 times stronger than ordinary reinforced concrete.


Journal of Advanced Manufacturing and Processing publishes its first issue

The American Institute of Chemical Engineers and its publishing partner John Wiley and Sons, Inc., released the inaugural issue of the Journal of Advanced Manufacturing and Processing, a peer-reviewed journal that focuses on chemical manufacturing and processing, smart manufacturing, and biological and biochemical manufacturing.

New sensor detects rare metals used in smartphones

Penn State researchers reengineered a fluorescent sensor used to detect calcium, substituting the part of the sensor that binds to calcium with a protein they discovered that is several million times better at binding to lanthanides than other metals.

Researchers study radioactive material behavior—without the radioactivity

Researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory used a nonradioactive surrogate material, cerium oxide, that is similar to the uranium oxide fuel used in nuclear reactors. The objective was to understand and predict formation and growth of metallic particles in irradiated nuclear fuel using the surrogate doped with five metals.