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[Images above] Credit: NIST


How 2D materials expand

Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers showed that using laser light to track vibrations of the atoms in 2D materials is a highly accurate way to determine the material’s thermal expansion coefficient. The approach confirms that these coefficients fall into a much narrower range than previously thought.

A twin pack of cooled nanoparticles

Researchers at ETH Zürich developed a technique to cool several nanoparticles simultaneously to temperatures of just a few thousandths of a degree above absolute zero. This new method can be used to study quantum effects of several nanoparticles and to build highly sensitive sensors.


Researchers developing enhanced methods for evaluating window energy performance

Researchers with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the University of Colorado Boulder, and WinBuild Inc. published a technical report proposing new methods to evaluate how long windows sustain their energy performance.

New insights into energy loss open doors for one up-and-coming solar tech

Engineers at Princeton University and King Abdullah University of Science and Technology described a new way to express energy loss in organic solar cells. They extended that description to make recommendations for engineering the best devices.

Researchers create green fuel with the flip of a light switch

Researchers at Princeton and Rice universities combined iron and copper nanoparticles with a simple LED light to demonstrate a low-cost technique for splitting hydrogen from liquid ammonia.


Researchers develop graphene-enabled single fiber actuator inspired by human muscles

Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology and Pusan National University developed a graphene-enhanced actuator for robotics applications. The new actuator is based on soft fibers with strong contractive actuation properties.


Researchers turn asphaltene into graphene for composites

Rice University researchers used their flash Joule heating to convert asphaltenes, a byproduct of crude oil production, into loosely aligned graphene and mix it into composites for thermal, anticorrosion, and 3D-printing applications.

New process developed to extract high purity rare earth element oxides

The Pennsylvania State University’s Center for Critical Minerals developed a new purification process that extracts mixed rare earth oxides from acid mine drainage and associated sludges at purities of 88.5%.

Solar windows cut emissions and energy use by 40% in glass skyscrapers

Researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory found that highly glazed skyscrapers can reduce their energy use and associated carbon emissions by 40% with photovoltaic windows.

Microwave heating for glass separation in end-of-life solar modules

Scientists in Thailand used microwaves to separate broken glass from photovoltaic panels. The process can be performed at temperatures ranging from 45–55°C.

Project aims to use concrete reefs to increase marine biodiversity off the Danish coast

A project called Super Reefs aims to reestablish 55 square kilometers of reefs off the Danish coast. Behind the work is an international group of artists called Superflex, which examines whether it is possible to create a stone reef from newly developed concrete.


NIST finds a sweet new way to print microchip patterns on curvy surfaces

A researcher at the National Institute of Standards and Technology discovered that a simple combination of caramelized sugar and corn syrup allows for transfer printing on near arbitrary conformal surfaces. Using this technique, microcircuit patterns could be transferred like a stencil.

Machine learning corrects 3D printing in real time

Researchers led by Simon Fraser University augmented a 3D printing process with in situ control and correction of material consumption. Their approach uses data analysis to learn from input data, identify patterns, and make predictions.

Scientists make it easier and safer to use carbon nanotubes in polymer nanocomposites

Researchers from Skoltech, Aalto University, and Kurnakov Institute developed a versatile and simple approach to using carbon nanotubes for manufacturing carbon nanotube-polymer nanocomposites. The method involves making briquettes, or dense packages of carbon nanotube powders.


Unique ferroelectric microstructure revealed for first time

Researchers led by The Pennsylvania State University observed and reported the unique microstructure of calcium manganate, a novel hybrid improper ferroelectric material with some interesting properties.

A possible game changer for next generation microelectronics

Researchers led by Argonne National Laboratory are looking to replace bar magnets with tiny magnetic vortices called skyrmions. They developed an artificial intelligence program that works with a high-power electron microscope to visualize skyrmions in samples at very low temperatures.

Achieving a quantum fiber

Researchers successfully demonstrated the transport of two-photon quantum states of light through a phase-separated Anderson localization optical fiber.

Glass-like shells of diatoms help turn light into energy in dim conditions

A new study revealed how the glass-like shells of diatoms help these microscopic organisms perform photosynthesis in dim conditions. A better understanding of how these phytoplankton harvest and interact with light could lead to improved solar cells, sensing devices, and optical components.

Surprising findings—new samples shed light on the moon’s history and makeup

According to a study that examined soil samples returned as part of the Chang’E – 5 mission in 2020, active volcanic activity helped create the moon’s surface mineralogy as recently as 2 billion years ago, leaving an iron-rich and high-calcium surface of basalts that is geographically younger than the lunar geology community previously thought.

Science Research Institute changes name to Total Experience Learning

As of Nov. 22, 2022, the Science Research Institute at Albright College will change its name to Total Experience Learning to reflect its new emphasis on transdisciplinary experiential education and innovation-based programs.