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Wood pulp-derived nanocrystals help cast tunable chiral silica films, with possible sensor and window uses

By / November 18, 2010

Tuning the pores of a new type of glass film causes different colors, but adding a drop of waterturns them transparent. (Credit: Nature/Kevin Shopsowit.) A team at the University of British Columbia, led by Mark MacLachlan, says its the first group to make mesoporous chiral nematic structured silica films cast from a nanocrystalline cellulose template prepared from wood pulp.…

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Solar sail uses smart glass to steer through cosmos

By / July 27, 2010

Artist’s conception of solar sail. (Credit: JAXA.) Japan has successfully deployed a solar sail on a spacecraft, demonstrating for the first time that such technology can be used to convert the sun’s energy to the power needed to move a vessel in the cosmos. As an added feature, the IKAROS spacecraft uses LCD technology to…

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RavenBrick: Nifty, thrifty, nonelectric smart windows and smart walls

By / March 18, 2010

Last week I had a post about Sage Electrochromics and the company’s line of smart windows. But, there is another company, RavenBrick, that says it has a less expensive, film-based approach to smart glass: smart windows (and smart walls) that offer many of the same features without needing any of the wiring required by windows…

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