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[Images above] Credit: NIST


Nickel phosphide nanoparticle catalyst is the full package

Researchers from Osaka University reported a hydrotalcite-supported nickel phosphide nanoparticle catalyst that showed high activity and selectivity in the hydrogenation of D-glucose to D-sorbitol. The catalyst was air-stable, reusable, and effective in water and at 25°C or 1 bar hydrogen gas pressure.

A scalable method for the large-area integration of 2D materials

A team of Graphene Flagship researchers in Sweden and Germany developed a new method to integrate graphene and 2D materials into semiconductor manufacturing lines by basically gluing two wafers together with a resin made of bisbenzocyclobutene, a dielectric material.

Vibrating 2D materials

An international collaboration succeeded in determining the strength of the oscillation excitation upon light absorption in a 2D transition metal dichalcogenide at room temperature. It turned out the exciton-phonon coupling strength was much greater than in conventional semiconductors.


New technology makes foldable solar cells a practical reality

An international team of researchers embedded single-walled carbon nanotube films into a polyimide substrate. Only 7 micrometers thick, the composite film exhibited exceptional resistance to bending, almost 80% transparency, and a power conversion efficiency of 15.2%.

New electrolyte additive for high-energy-density Li-ion batteries

Researchers at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology in Korea developed an innovative electrolyte additive that enables a high-energy-density lithium-ion battery to retain more than 80% of its initial capacity even after hundreds of cycles.

Improving Li-ion battery performance using 3D printing

In two recent articles, researchers led by the California Institute of Technology developed two facile methods for fabricating carbon and lithium cobalt oxide structures using digital light processing printing. They showed that these materials could be used as 3D LIB anodes and cathodes, respectively.


Ceramic additive manufacturing demonstrated for the first time on the ISS

In December 2020, Made in Space’s turbine ceramic manufacturing module, which was delivered to the International Space Station in October, successfully UV cured polymer resin layer-by-layer in microgravity for the first time. The preceramic resin was invented by HRL’s Additive Manufacturing group.

Swedish group uses graphene to progress copper 3D printing

Researchers at Uppsala University and graphene materials company Graphmatech made what they call a breakthrough in the printability of copper for laser additive manufacturing by “significantly lowering the reflectivity of copper powder to achieve more dense printed parts.”

Nanoparticle gel unites oil and water in manufacturing-friendly approach

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the University of Delaware found a new way to create gels. Instead of designing nanoparticles to remain at the interface between the two solvents, their chosen particles concentrate within one of them.

‘Defective’ carbon simplifies hydrogen peroxide production

Rice University researchers created a “defective” catalyst that simplifies the generation of hydrogen peroxide from oxygen. The catalyst is metal-free carbon black that they treated with oxygen plasma so as to introduce defects and oxygen-containing groups into the structure of the carbon particles, exposing more surface area for interactions.


Switching nanolight on and off

A team of researchers led by Columbia University developed a unique platform to program a layered crystal, allowing them to control the flow of nanolight. They did so by illuminating tungsten diselenide with a pulse of light, thus changing the crystal’s electronic structure.

Scientists create liquid crystals that look a lot like their solid counterparts

Researchers at University of Colorado Boulder designed new kinds of liquid crystals that mirror the complex structures of some solid crystals, specifically monoclinic and orthorhombic crystals.

2D superconductivity and anisotropic transport at potassium tantalate interfaces

Researchers at Argonne National Laboratory, University of Illinois, and Chinese Academy of Sciences detailed their discovery of superconductivity in electron gases formed at the interfaces between potassium tantalate and the insulating overlayers of either europium-II oxide or lanthanum aluminate.

Africa’s hit science show for kids comes to the US

A show called N*Gen (pronounced “engine”) first aired on Ugandan TV in September. Since then, the show was picked up by television networks in more than half a dozen African countries, and on February 6 it debuted in North America and the Caribbean on The Africa Channel, airing every Saturday and Sunday at 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. Eastern.