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[Images above] Credit: NIST


Another reason why batteries can’t charge in minutes

Using scanning electron nanodiffraction, Argonne National Laboratory researchers found interesting chemical behavior in one of the two terminals of lithium-ion batteries during charge/discharge. Specifically, the faster they charged the battery, the more atomically disordered the anode became, which ultimately prevented lithium ion movement.

Ultrathin solar cells get a boost

Researchers led by Rice University discovered that in certain 2D perovskites, sunlight effectively shrinks the space between the atoms, improving their ability to carry a current by up to 18%. At the same time, the nature of the lattice made the material less prone to degrading, even when heated to 80°C (176°F).

Lead-absorbing tape boosts viability of rising star in solar power industry

Researchers at Northern Illinois University and National Renewable Energy Laboratory developed a cost-effective Scotch-tape-like film that can be applied to perovskite solar cells and capture 99.9% of leaked lead in the event of solar cell damage.

Researchers conduct first study of passive solar energy as a residential heat source

University of Oregon researchers measured the scale and scope of unused passive solar energy and compared the data to residential space heating needs. They discovered that cold and cloudy climates are abundant sources of solar energy and estimated that this untapped passive solar energy could provide one-third of residential heating.


Gradations of recycled glass to replace river sand in 3D-printed concrete

Researchers from RMIT University developed a sustainable 3D concrete printing process for building structures by replacing 50% of natural river sand with different grades of recycled glass.


Development of a single-process platform for the manufacture of graphene quantum dots

Researchers at the Korea Institute of Science and Technology developed a technique to precisely control the bonding structure of single heteroatoms in a graphene quantum dot through simple chemical reaction control.


Some polycrystal grain boundaries feel the heat more than others

Researchers from the University of Tokyo Institute of Industrial Science used electron energy loss spectroscopy to investigate the effect of heating on the grain boundaries of strontium titanate. They identified differences in the coefficient of expansion depending on the grain boundary.

Beads of glass in meteorites help scientists piece together how solar system formed

Scientists with the University of Chicago published an analysis laying out how tiny beads of glass, which are found in many meteorites, came to be—and what they can tell us about what happened in the early solar system.