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Video: Turning synthetic into biological—Scientists harness bacteria to bond silicon and carbon

By April Gocha / December 7, 2016

Researchers at California Institute of Technology report that, using directed evolution, they have convinced bacteria to biologically produce carbon–silicon bonds much more efficiently than synthetically catalyzed chemical reactions.

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Video: Stephen Hawking and Paul Rudd battle for the future of humanity in epic game of quantum chess

By April Gocha / January 28, 2016

In honor of the legendary physicist Richard Feynman and his quantum legacy, California Institute of Technology held a two-day event this week all about quantum science—and it featured one epic video battle.

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Other materials stories that may be of interest

By April Gocha / May 19, 2015

Separating rare earths with UV light, NASA testing materials in space, and other materials stories that may be of interest for May 19, 2015.

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Other materials stories that may be of interest

By April Gocha / November 5, 2014

The White House announces a 3D printed ornament contest, molybdenum disulfide for hydrogen catalysis, glass deformation mystery solved, ultrablack materials set to space, and other materials stories that may be of interest for November 5, 2014.

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Making ceramics perfect—and perfectly bendable—with air

By April Gocha / September 16, 2014

Researchers from California Institute of Technology say that bendable ceramics are more than possible—they report the fabrication of alumina nanostructures that are 99.9% air and can bend and deform with the best of them, springing back to shape after compressions of over 50% strain.

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Light-bending silicon chip may make former Apple iPhone rumors true

By April Gocha / March 25, 2014

Caltech researchers report a new integrated optical phased array silicon chip that can bend light with no mechanical parts, opening up possibilities for simple projectors that can be incorporated into devices such as smartphones.

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Other materials stories that may be of interest

By Jim Destefani / November 25, 2013

Other materials stories that may be of interest.

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Other materials stories that may be of interest

By Jim Destefani / September 9, 2013

Other materials stories that may be of interest.

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Newly appreciated liquid-like properties of ‘old’ Se-Cu ceramic material provide nice thermoelectric jolt

By / March 26, 2012

“Liquid-like” thermoelectrics: The blue spheres represent selenium atoms forming a crystal lattice. The orange regions in between represent the copper atoms that flow through the crystal structure like a liquid. This liquid-like behavior is what gives the selenium-copper material its unique thermoelectric properties. Credit: Jeff Snyder and Lance Hayashida, Caltech. The April 2012 issue of the ACerS Bulletin (just posted…

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Alta Devices reports NREL verification of 23.5% efficiency for counter-intuitive solar panel

By / February 8, 2012

Conversion efficiencies of the best research solar cells worldwide from 1976 through 2011 for various photovoltaic technologies; efficiencies determined by certified agencies/laboratories. Credit: NREL. The steady march to grid parity for solar energy devices continues: A Santa Clara, Calif., maker of gallium arsenide photovoltaic panels, Alta Devices, announced Tuesday that the NREL verified that its…

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