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[Images above] Credit: NIST


Graphene layer enables advance in super-resolution microscopy

Researchers at University of Göttingen developed a method that takes advantage of the unusual properties of graphene to electromagnetically interact with fluorescing molecules. This method allows scientists to optically measure extremely small distances, in the order of 1 ångström, with high accuracy and reproducibility for the first time.

Using nature to produce a revolutionary optical material

An international team of researchers found a material created using tellurium nanorods—produced by naturally occurring bacteria—is an effective nonlinear optical material, capable of protecting electronic devices against high-intensity bursts of light, including those emitted by inexpensive household lasers targeted at aircraft or other critical systems.

Researchers achieve atomically-precise graphene origami

By replacing graphite with high-quality graphene nanoislands, researchers in China and the U.S. leveraged the atomic-level control of scanning tunneling microscope into an origami nanofabrication tool. They can fold single layers of graphene with a precision of 0.1°.


Future of LEDs gets boost from verification of localization states in InGaN quantum wells

Researchers in China report an indium gallium nitride LED structure with high luminescence efficiency and supposedly the first direct observation of transition carriers between different localization states within InGaN. The work serves as a reference about the emission properties of InGaN materials for use in manufacturing LEDs and laser diodes.

Selenium anchors could improve durability of platinum fuel cell catalysts

To reduce clumping of platinum catalysts in fuel cells, researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology devised a method to anchor platinum particles to their carbon support material using bits of the element selenium.


Challenges for today and the future in 3D printing bioceramic scaffolds

In a recent review article, researchers from the University of New South Wales explore 3D printing bioceramics and “hurdles” for the clinical setting, along with current limitations and required parameters.


Cleaning up after fast fashion

Texas Tech University researchers added TiO2 nanoparticles into a polymer solution, which was then electrospun into nanofibers. The addition of TiO2 greatly improved the degradation rate of organic pigments and dyes, and enhanced other desirable traits such as antibacterial and antifouling properties.


‘Radical’ wrinkle in forming complex carbon molecules in space

Scientists discovered a new possible pathway toward forming carbon structures in space using a specialized chemical exploration technique at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

A novel recipe for efficiently removing intrinsic defects from hard crystals

Researchers from Osaka University, the Russian Academy of Sciences, and TU Dresden discovered an effective method for removing lattice defects from crystals. The researchers applied the method to boron but say the method can also be applied to carbon-based materials, such as fullerene.

At the edge of chaos, powerful new electronics could be created

Researchers from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands observed a phenomenon called “spatial chaos” in a material for the first time. Spatial chaos, which the researchers observed in barium titanate, was first predicted in 1985. The phenomenon could be used in applications such as adaptable neuromorphic electronics.

New insulation technique paves the way for more powerful and smaller chips

Researchers at KU Leuven and imec developed a new technique to insulate microchips. They placed an oxide film on the surface and then let it react with vapour of the organic material. The reaction caused the material to expand, forming nanoporous crystals.

A concrete advantage for space explorers

A recent investigation on the International Space Station examined cement solidification in microgravity. Researchers mixed tricalcium silicate and water and, on first evaluation, the space samples showed considerable changes in the cement microstructure compared to cement processed on Earth. A primary difference was increased porosity.

Researchers develop technique to de-ice surfaces in seconds

Researchers from University of Illinois and Kyushu University in Japan found delivering a pulse of very high current to the interface between ice and a surface creates a layer of water, allowing ice to slide off under force of gravity. To ensure the pulse generates enough heat at the interface, the researchers apply a thin coating indium tin oxide to the surface.