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[Images above] Credit: NIST


The ultimate defense against hackers may be just a few atoms thick

The next generation of electronic hardware security may be at hand as researchers at New York University introduce a new class of unclonable cybersecurity security primitives made of a low-cost nanomaterial with the highest possible level of structural randomness.

Addition of tin boosts nanoparticle’s photoluminescence

Researchers have developed germanium nanoparticles with improved photoluminescence, making them potentially better materials for solar cells and imaging probes. Adding tin to the nanoparticle’s germanium core allowed particles to absorb more light.

Researchers inadvertently boost surface area of nickel nanoparticles for catalysis

Researchers from North Carolina State University and the Air Force Research Laboratory have discovered that a technique designed to coat nickel nanoparticles with silica shells actually fragments the material.

Simpler way to deposit magnetic iron oxide onto gold nanorods

Researchers from North Carolina State University and MIT have found a simpler way to deposit magnetic iron oxide (magnetite) nanoparticles onto silica-coated gold nanorods, creating multifunctional nanoparticles with useful magnetic and optical properties.

Atomic blasting creates new devices to measure nanoparticles

Researchers at NIST have demonstrated that a standard ion-beam technique can be fine-tuned to make structures with depths controlled to within the diameter of a single silicon atom. The technique can fabricate devices that allow precise measurement of nanoparticle size.


Glass with switchable opacity could improve solar cells and LEDs

Using nanoscale grass-like structures, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh have created glass that lets through a large amount of light while appearing hazy. This is the first time that glass has been made with such high levels of haze and light transmittance at the same time.

The wet road to fast and stable batteries

An international team of scientists has discovered an anode battery material with superfast charging and stable operation over many thousands of cycles. The water-bearing compound, lithium titanate hydrate, could replace the graphite anode commonly used in lithium-ions.

Guanidinium stabilizes perovskite solar cells at 19% efficiency

Researchers at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, with colleagues at the University of Cordoba, have discovered that they can improve perovskite stability by introducing the large organic cation guanidinium (CH6N3+) into methylammonium lead iodide perovskites.

Diamond-film, double-glazed solar panels could offer serious power

University of Warwick researchers looking to bolster the efficiency of solar panels have concluded that the answer lies in some advanced double-glazing. Unlike other photovoltaic panels, the device uses gas—rather than a vacuum—to transport electrical energy.

Scientists create stretchable battery made entirely out of fabric

A research team led by faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York has developed an entirely textile-based, bacteria-powered bio-battery that could one day be integrated into wearable electronics.


Electricity, eel-style: Soft power cells could run tomorrow’s implantables

Inspired by the electric eel, a flexible, transparent electrical device could lead to body-friendly power sources for implanted health monitors and medication dispensers, augmented-reality contact lenses and countless other applications.

Precision nanomaterials may pave new way to selectively kill cancer cells

Researchers have succeeded in taking the next step toward using human-made nanoscale compounds to fight cancer. A recent study showed that dendrimers may be used to introduce compounds that essentially trick cancer cells into performing self-destructive tasks.

New ultra-thin diamond membrane is a radiobiologist’s best friend

A collaboration of researchers has developed an ultra-thin diamond membrane that can measure the number of protons in a dose of radiation with almost perfect accuracy. The detector attaches to a charged-particle microbeam and enables radiation delivery.

Nanotexturing creates bacteria-killing spikes on stainless steel surfaces

By using an electrochemical etching process on a common stainless steel alloy, researchers have created a nanotextured surface that kills bacteria while not harming mammalian cells. The process might be used to attack microbial contamination on implantable medical devices.

3-D printed microfibers could provide structure for artificially grown body parts

Much as a frame provides structural support for a house and the chassis provides strength and shape for a car, a team of Penn State engineers believe they have a way to create the structural framework for growing living tissue using an off-the-shelf 3-D printer.


Simple model used to compute elasticity of newly synthesized glassy diamond

Earlier this year, amorphous diamond was synthesized for the first time. A team at Clemson University has now successfully calculated a number of basic physical properties for this new substance, including elastic constants and related quantities.

A diamond as the steppingstone to new materials, using plasma physics technology

University of Alabama at Birmingham physicists have taken the first step in a five-year effort to create novel compounds that surpass diamonds in heat resistance and nearly rival them in hardness.

Advance in light filtering technology has implications for LCD screens, lasers, beyond

Optical physicists from Nanjing and Nankai University and the University of Central Florida published details of a new vector polarizer design that enables flexible filtering of a wide range of light sources and generation of new light states.

Shining light on a growing semiconductor modifies its interface with the surface

Scientists deposited atoms in precise layers by directing beams of elements at the surface. Using this approach, they grew a nearly perfect zinc selenide film on a gallium arsenide surface, even though their chemistries are dissimilar.

New material lowers the energy consumption associated with ethylene production

ExxonMobil and Polytechnic University of Valencia researchers are developing a zeolite that will allow users to separate ethylene using 25% less energy than with current methods. The new material is a silica zeolite with a unique structure and can be used in gas separation processes.

Physicists excited by discovery of new form of matter, excitonium

Excitonium has a team of researchers … well… excited! They have demonstrated the existence of an enigmatic new form of matter, which has perplexed scientists since it was first theorized almost 50 years ago.

Thermal ‘skin’ designed to maintain temperature of satellites

Researchers recently developed a new material to self-regulate the temperature of satellites. The team developed a hybrid structure of silicon and vanadium dioxide with a conical design to better control the radiation from the body of the satellite. It’s like a textured skin or coating.

‘Magnetoelectric’ material shows promise as memory for electronics

Researchers describe not only their unique process for making a high-quality magnetoelectric material, but exactly how and why it works. The researchers developed a unique process, using atomic “steps,” to guide the growth of a homogenous, single-crystal thin film of bismuth ferrite.