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[Images above] Credit: NIST


Determining boson peak frequency in ultrathin alumina

Recent collaborative work between University of Wollongong, RMIT University, and Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization revealed the frequency of the boson-peak in the density of states of ultrathin alumina with thicknesses of 2 nanometers.

Graphene can act as surfactant

Cranfield University researchers showed graphene flakes can act as a surfactant, i.e., a substance that tends to reduce the surface tension of a liquid in which it is dissolved. Graphene offers a more stable, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly way to operate in harsh geological or chemical environments than current surfactants.

New MXene material blocks electromagnetic interference

Researchers from Drexel University and Korea Institute of Science and Technology uncovered the unique qualities of titanium carbonitride that make it an even more promising candidate for electromagnetic interference shielding applications than titanium carbide.

Electrochemical doping improves carbon nanotube transparent conductors

Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology and Aalto University researchers discovered electrochemical doping with ionic liquid can significantly enhance optical and electrical properties of transparent conductors made of single-walled carbon nanotube films.

Diamonds shine a light on hidden currents in graphene

Researchers developed a way to use diamonds to see the elusive details of electrical currents. They demonstrated the potential of the technique by revealing the unusual electrical currents that flow in graphene.

Mapping crystal shapes could fast-track 2D materials

Materials scientists at Rice University and the University of Pennsylvania are calling for a collective, global effort to fast-track the mass production of 2D materials like graphene and molybdenum disulfide.


Green battery: Store wind energy in underground water balloons

Aarhus University and entrepreneurial company AquaNamic started constructing 100 sqm demonstration facility for new energy storage technology. They plan to pump water into a membrane lying beneath a large mound of soil, and when energy is needed, the valve is opened and water is pushed out of the balloon through an electricity-generating turbine.

New cobalt-free high-voltage spinel cathode material with high areal capacity

Researchers from University of California San Diego, University of Texas at Austin, U.S. Army Research Laboratory, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory developed a thick cobalt-free high voltage spinel cathode material with high areal capacity.

Novel gas-capture approach advances nuclear fuel management

Research by a multidisciplinary group including Massachusetts Institute of Technology represents one of the first steps toward practical application of metal organic frameworks for nuclear fuel management, with novel findings on efficacy and radiation resistance and an initial concept for implementation.


Better wastewater treatment? It’s a wrap

Rice University researchers showed spheres of bismuth, oxygen, and carbon wrapped with nitrogen-doped graphene oxide inactivated antibiotic-resistant bacteria and degraded free-floating antibiotic resistance genes in secondary wastewater effluent.


Laser inversion enables multi-materials 3D printing

Robotics engineers at Columbia University discovered by inverting a laser so that it points upward, they can enable selective laser sintering to use multiple materials at the same time. They demonstrated the technique on thermoplastics and are now experimenting with metallic powders and resins.


ERC withdraws support for Plan S Open Access initiative

The European Research Council reached an unanimous decision to move toward Open Access implementation that is independent of cOAlition S activities. The council emphasizes it supports the underlying principles of Plan S, but it reached its decision after considering “detrimental” impacts that restricting publication choice has on early-career researchers.

Small but self-imposing: Titanium alters behavior of host lattice atoms

Researchers from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and Ural Federal University found that incorporating titanium atoms into barium hexaferrite leads to an unexpected substructure forming in the crystal lattice. The resulting material is promising for ultrafast computer memory applications.

Researchers create surface coating that can create false infrared images

University of California, Berkeley researchers found a way to imbed visual “decoys” into surfaces of objects in a way that can fool people into thinking they detect a specific image in the infrared that is not really there. They did so by creating special structures made from delicately engineered thin films of tungsten-doped vanadium dioxide.

Photochromic bismuth complexes show great promise for optical memory elements

Researchers from the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology and the Russian Academy of Sciences designed a photosensitive bismuth complex with optimal properties and demonstrated that it can be successfully used as advanced optically triggered material for memory devices.

Study identifies top reasons for sewer line failure

Ohio State University researchers found concrete sewer pipes around the world are most likely to fail either because their concrete is not strong enough or because they cannot handle the weight of trucks that drive over them.