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Nanotechnology & Material Science News and Discussions

nanotechnology nano microtechnology micro material science metamaterials graphene atomic engineering molecular manufacturing nanobots

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#781
Jessica

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New research integrates borophene and graphene into 2-D heterostructures

by Emily Ayshford, Northwestern University

Nanomaterials could provide the basis of many emerging technologies, including extremely tiny, flexible, and transparent electronics.

 

While many nanomaterials exhibit promising electronic properties, scientists and engineers are still working to best integrate these materials together to eventually create semiconductors and circuits with them.

Northwestern Engineering researchers have created two-dimensional (2-D) heterostructures from two of these materials, graphene and borophene, taking an important step toward creating intergrated circuits from these nanomaterials.

"If you were to crack open an integrated circuit inside a smartphone, you'd see many different materials integrated together," said Mark Hersam, Walter P. Murphy Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, who led the research. "However, we've reached the limits of many of those traditional materials. By integrating nanomaterials like borophene and graphene together, we are opening up new possibilities in nanoelectronics."

 

https://phys.org/new...structures.html



#782
caltrek

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Uncovering the Secrets of the Toughest Fish Scales on Earth

 

https://www.courthou...cales-on-earth/

 

Extract:

 

(Courthouse News) – The design of the armor-like scales of an Amazonian fish could have military applications, researchers said in a study Wednesday.

 

…After researchers submerged arapaima scales in water for 48 hours, they began to tear the scales apart while also adding pressure to a central point.

 

…Understanding the structural design of the scales proved to be critical as scientists learned that the pressure could only deform the scale, and not break it, researchers said in the study, published in the journal Matter.

 

The scales’ hardened layers are fused together at “an atomistic level” by collagen, similar to the way layers of plastic webbing give bulletproof vests their toughness, researchers said in a statement.

 

Lead author and UC Berkeley researcher Robert Ritchie said that mineralized collagen gives the arapaima scales a hardness that scientists have not yet been able to replicate.

ArapaimaScales.jpg?resize=450%2C338

Closeup of the arapaima gigas’ scales.

(T. Voekler via Wikipedia)


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#783
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The next graphene? Shiny and magnetic, a new form of pure carbon dazzles with potential
 
Nov. 12, 2019 , 4:25 PM
 
A “happy accident” has yielded a new, stable form of pure carbon made from cheap feedstocks, researchers say. Like diamond and graphene, two other guises of carbon, the material seems to have extraordinary physical properties. It is harder than stainless steel, about as conductive, and as reflective as a polished aluminum mirror. Perhaps most surprising, the substance appears to be ferromagnetic, behaving like a permanent magnet at temperatures up to 125°C—a first for carbon. The discovery, announced by physicist Joel Therrien of the University of Massachusetts in Lowell on 4 November here at the International Symposium on Clusters and Nanomaterials, could lead to lightweight coatings, medical products, and novel electronic devices.
 
Therrien’s talk elicited both excitement and caution among the dozens of researchers attending the meeting. “Once it is published and the work has been replicated by others, it will generate a lot of interest for sure,” says Qian Wang, an applied physicist at Peking University in Beijing. She notes that carbon is much lighter than other ferromagnetic elements such as manganese, nickel, and iron. Moreover, carbon is nontoxic in the body, she says. “If it can be magnetic, it could be very useful for making biosensors or drug-delivery carriers” that could be magnetically interrogated or directed to diseased tissues.
 


#784
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Uncovering the Secrets of the Toughest Fish Scales on Earth
 
https://www.courthou...cales-on-earth/
 
Extract:

 
(Courthouse News) – The design of the armor-like scales of an Amazonian fish could have military applications, researchers said in a study Wednesday.
 
…After researchers submerged arapaima scales in water for 48 hours, they began to tear the scales apart while also adding pressure to a central point.
 
…Understanding the structural design of the scales proved to be critical as scientists learned that the pressure could only deform the scale, and not break it, researchers said in the study, published in the journal Matter.
 
The scales’ hardened layers are fused together at “an atomistic level” by collagen, similar to the way layers of plastic webbing give bulletproof vests their toughness, researchers said in a statement.
 
Lead author and UC Berkeley researcher Robert Ritchie said that mineralized collagen gives the arapaima scales a hardness that scientists have not yet been able to replicate.

ArapaimaScales.jpg?resize=450%2C338
Closeup of the arapaima gigas’ scales.
(T. Voekler via Wikipedia)

I never knew “atomistic” was a word. Learn something new erry day

If you're going through hell, keep going. - Winston Churchill

You don't decide your future. You decide your habits, and your habits decide your future.
Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. - Abraham Lincoln.


#785
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Research reveals new state of matter: a Cooper pair metal

by Kevin Stacey, Brown University

For years, physicists have assumed that Cooper pairs, the electron duos that enable superconductors to conduct electricity without resistance, were two-trick ponies. The pairs either glide freely, creating a superconducting state, or create an insulating state by jamming up within a material, unable to move at all.

 

But in a new paper published in Science, a team of researchers has shown that Cooper pairs can also conduct electricity with some amount of resistance, like regular metals do. The findings describe an entirely new state of matter, the researchers say, that will require a new theoretical explanation.

 

https://phys.org/new...pair-metal.html



#786
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Using aluminum and lasers to make bendable glass

by Bob Yirka , Phys.org

An international team of researchers has found a way to make bendable glass using lasers fired at crystalline aluminum oxide. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes their technique and the features of the glass they produced. Lothar Wondraczek with the University of Jena has published a companion piece in the same journal issue outlining the history of scientists attempting to overcome the brittleness of glass.

 

Glass is somewhat strong, but only up to a point; it is also very brittle. If you drop a drinking glass, it will likely shatter on the floor. As Wondraczek notes, scientists have been searching for ways to make glass less brittle for as long as people have been making glass. Bendable glass would mean drinking glasses that survive a fall, or smartphone screens that do not crack. In this new effort, the researchers say they have taken a step toward that goal.

Ordinary glass is made from silica and oxygen, and it is known as an amorphous solid—a state in which a material's molecules are locked together—in the case of glass, in a random fashion. It is transparent because photons can pass through it without interacting with any of the electrons in the glass. In this new effort, the researchers used crystalline aluminum oxide instead of sand to make some tiny glass samples. To do so, they fired intense bursts of laser light at a sample to turn it into a purple plasma. The material was then allowed to cool on a substrate.

 

https://phys.org/new...able-glass.html



#787
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Novel material switches between electrically conducting and insulating states

by Alex Gerage, Northwestern University

Northwestern Engineering researchers have developed a novel design strategy to identify new materials exhibiting a metal-insulator transition (MIT), a rare class of materials categorized by their ability to reversibly switch between electrically conducting and insulating states.

 

The new method could jumpstart future design and delivery of faster microelectronics with more storage capabilities, as well as quantum materials platforms for future electronics.

"Our approach uses anion substitution at the atomic scale and the recognition of key MIT properties to identify potential heteroanionic MIT materials, which have not been widely considered to this point," said James Rondinelli, associate professor of materials science and engineering and the Morris E. Fine Junior Professor in Materials and Manufacturing at the McCormick School of Engineering, who led the team. "We hope by formulating these electronic structure-property relationships, new transitions in quantum materials can be designed in the future."

 

https://phys.org/new...ing-states.html



#788
caltrek

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Ford is recycling McDonald’s coffee waste into car parts

 

https://www.theverge...ounds-car-parts

 

Entire Article (excluding photographs):

 

(Verge) Ford is trying to do its part to combat climate change by recycling old coffee waste from McDonald’s into car parts. The automaker will be taking food waste from the fast food giant, diverting it from a landfill to its laboratory, where it will be engineered into bioplastics, Ford said. In addition to reducing food waste, the effort will make car parts lighter, use less petroleum, and lower CO2 emissions.

 

The auto industry is under enormous pressure to reduce tailpipe emissions and increase production of electric vehicles. Over a quarter of all carbon emissions are from the transportation sector. Ford is one of four global automakers that have bucked the Trump administration by reaching a deal with California to increase the fuel economy of — and reduce emissions from — their new vehicle fleets through 2026. Turning the dried skin of the coffee bean, that falls of(f) during roasting, into auto parts is a relatively minor effort compared to that, but Ford hopes that it will bolster its environmental bona fides all the same.

 

Here’s how Ford describes the process:

 

Every year, millions of pounds of coffee chaff – the dried skin of the bean that naturally comes off during the roasting process – are turned into garden mulch or charcoal in North America. Together, Ford and McDonald’s can provide an innovative new home to a significant portion of that material. The companies found that chaff can be converted into a durable material to reinforce certain vehicle parts. By heating the chaff to high temperatures under low oxygen, mixing it with plastic and other additives and turning it into pellets, the material can be formed into various shapes.

 

The chaff composite meets the quality specifications for parts like headlamp housings and other interior and under hood components. The resulting components will be about 20 percent lighter and require up to 25 percent less energy during the molding process. Heat properties of the chaff component are significantly better than the currently used material, according to Ford.

 

Ford has set a goal for itself to only use recycled and renewable plastics in its global vehicle fleet.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#789
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New way to make biomedical devices from silk yields better products with tunable qualities

by Tufts University

Researchers led by engineers at Tufts University have developed a novel, significantly more efficient fabrication method for silk that allows them to heat and mold the material into solid forms for a wide range of applications, including medical devices. The end products have superior strength compared to other materials, have physical properties that can be "tuned" for specific needs, and can be functionally modified with bioactive molecules, such as antibiotics and enzymes. The thermal modeling of silk, described in Nature Materials, overcomes several hurdles to enable manufacturing flexibility common to many plastics.

 

"We and others have explored the development of many silk-based devices over the years using solution-based manufacturing," said David Kaplan, Stern Family Professor of Engineering at the Tufts University School of Engineering and corresponding author of the study. "But this new solid-state manufacturing approach can significantly cut the time and cost of producing many of them and offer even greater flexibility in their form and properties. Further, this new approach avoids the complications with solution-based supply chains for the silk protein, which should facilitate scale up in manufacturing."

 

https://phys.org/new...s-products.html



#790
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Nanoparticle therapeutic restores tumor suppressor, sensitizes cancer cells to treatment

by Brigham and Women's Hospital

Leveraging advancements in nanotechnology, investigators from the Brigham have found that restoring p53 not only delays the growth of p53-deficient liver and lung cancer cells but may also make tumors more vulnerable to cancer drugs known as mTOR inhibitors.

 

In preclinical experiments, investigators restored p53 using synthetic mRNA nanoparticles, making lung and liver cancer cells susceptible to available cancer drugs

The tumor suppressor gene p53, also known as the guardian of the genome, plays a critical function in preventing cancer. Because of its powerful role, it is one of the most commonly compromised genes in cancer.

 

https://medicalxpres...sensitizes.html



#791
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The super-cool materials that send heat to space

 

https://www.nature.c...586-019-03911-8

 

Introduction:

 

(Nature) When businessman Howard Bisla was tasked with saving a local shop from financial ruin, one of his first concerns was energy efficiency. In June 2018, he approached his local electricity provider in Sacramento, California, about upgrading the lights. The provider had another idea. It offered to install an experimental cooling system: panels that could stay colder than their surroundings, even under the blazing hot sun, without consuming energy.

 

The aluminium-backed panels now sit on the shop’s roof, their mirrored surfaces coated with a thin cooling film and angled to the sky. They cool liquid in pipes underneath that run into the shop, and, together with new lights, have reduced electricity bills by around 15%. “Even on a hot day, they’re not hot,” Bisla says.

 

The panels emerged from a discovery at Stanford University in California. In 2014, researchers there announced that they had created a material that stayed colder than its surroundings in direct sunlight1. Two members of the team, Shanhui Fan and Aaswath Raman, with colleague Eli Goldstein, founded a start-up firm, SkyCool Systems, and supplied Bisla’s panels. Since then, they and other researchers have made a host of materials, including films, spray paints and treated wood, that stay cool in the heat.

 

These materials all rely on enhancing a natural heat-shedding effect known as passive radiative cooling. Every person, building and object on Earth radiates heat, but the planet’s blanket-like atmosphere absorbs most of it and radiates it back. Infrared rays between 8 and 13 micrometres in wavelength, however, are not captured by the atmosphere and leave Earth, escaping into cold outer space. As far back as the 1960s, scientists sought to harness this phenomenon for practical use. But passive radiative cooling is noticeable only at night: in the daytime, sunlight bathes us in much more heat energy than we can send into space.

 

The new materials reflect a broad spectrum of light, in much the same way as mirrors or white paint do. In the crucial 8–13-µm part of the infrared spectrum, however, they strongly absorb and then emit radiation. When the materials point at the sky, the infrared rays can pass straight through the atmosphere and into space. That effectively links the materials to an inexhaustible heat sink, into which they can keep dumping heat without it coming back.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#792
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Engineers design on-skin electronic device providing a personal air conditioner without needing electricity

by Eric Stann, University of Missouri

One day, soldiers could cool down on the military battlefield—preventing heat stroke or exhaustion—by using "wearable air conditioning," an on-skin device designed by engineers at the University of Missouri. The device includes numerous human health care applications such as the ability to monitor blood pressure, electrical activity of the heart and the level of skin hydration.

 

The findings are detailed in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Unlike similar products in use today or other related concepts, this breathable and waterproof device can deliver personal air conditioning to a human body through a process called passive cooling. Passive cooling does not utilize electricity, such as a fan or pump, which researchers believe allows for minimal discomfort to the user.

 

https://techxplore.c...rsonal-air.html



#793
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Researchers have created tiny robots that could enter the human body, move along blood vessels, could enter the brain and send signals to neurons

The 1mm by 3mm nanobots are powered by an external magnetic field generator.
Changing the magnetic fields allows the researchers to twist the robot’s body in many different ways and achieve a wide range of movements such as crawling, swinging and rolling, according to their paper.
They can also squeeze through gaps by using infrared radiation to contract their bodies by more than a third.
The worm’s body is also capable of changing colour in different environments because it is made from a transparent, temperature-responsive hydrogel and the video shows that when added to a cup of water at room temperature they become almost invisible.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#794
Yuli Ban

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Graphene amplifier unlocks hidden frequencies in the electromagnetic spectrum

When the THz radiation hits the graphene outer layer, the trapped particles inside attach themselves to the outgoing waves giving them more power and energy than they arrived with—amplifying them.
 
Professor Fedor Kusmartsev, of Loughborough's Department of Physics, said: "The device has a very simple structure, consisting of two layers of graphene and superconductor, forming a sandwich (as shown above).
 
"As the THz light falls on the sandwich it is reflected, like a mirror.

Prof Kusmartsev said they hope to have a working amplifier ready for commercialisation in about a year.
He added that such a device would vastly improve current technology and allow scientists to reveal more about the human brain.
"The Universe is full of terahertz radiation and signals, in fact, all biological organisms both absorb and emit it.
"I expect, that with such an amplifier available we will be able to discover many mysteries of nature, for example, how chemical reactions and biological processes are going on or how our brain operates and how we think.
"The terahertz range is the last frequency of radiation to be adopted by humankind.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#795
Yuli Ban

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Lab turns trash into valuable graphene in a flash

‘Green’ process promises pristine graphene in bulk using waste food, plastic and other materials

A new process introduced by the Rice University lab of chemist James Tour can turn bulk quantities of just about any carbon source into valuable graphene flakes. The process is quick and cheap; Tour said the “flash graphene” technique can convert a ton of coal, food waste or plastic into graphene for a fraction of the cost used by other bulk graphene-producing methods.
“This is a big deal,” Tour said. “The world throws out 30% to 40% of all food, because it goes bad, and plastic waste is of worldwide concern. We’ve already proven that any solid carbon-based matter, including mixed plastic waste and rubber tires, can be turned into graphene.”


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#796
Yuli Ban

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Major Breakthrough: Graphene Batteries FINALLY Hit the Market


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#797
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Researchers develop new method to isolate atomic sheets and create new materials

by Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science

Two-dimensional materials from layered van der Waals (vdW) crystals hold great promise for electronic, optoelectronic, and quantum devices, but making/manufacturing them has been limited by the lack of high-throughput techniques for exfoliating single-crystal monolayers with sufficient size and high quality. Columbia University researchers report today in Science that they have invented a new method—using ultraflat gold films—to disassemble vdW single crystals layer by layer into monolayers with near-unity yield and with dimensions limited only by bulk crystal sizes.

 

The monolayers generated using this technique have the same high quality as those created by conventional "Scotch tape" exfoliation, but are roughly a million times larger. The monolayers can be assembled into macroscopic artificial structures, with properties not easily created in conventionally grown bulk crystals. For instance, layers of molybdenum disulfide can be aligned with each other so that the resulting stack lacks mirror-symmetry and as a result demonstrates strongly nonlinear optical response, where it absorbs red light and emits ultraviolet light, a process known as second harmonic generation.

 

https://phys.org/new...-materials.html



#798
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Physicists may have accidentally discovered a new state of matter. The possibilities are endless

Humans have been studying electric charge for thousands of years, and the results have shaped modern civilization. Our daily lives depend on electric lighting, smartphones, cars, and computers, in ways that the first individuals to take note of a static shock or a bolt of lightning could never have imagined. 
Now, physicists at Northeastern have discovered a new way to manipulate electric charge. And the changes to the future of our technology could be monumental. 
“When such phenomena are discovered, imagination is the limit,” says Swastik Kar, an associate professor of physics. “It could change the way we can detect and communicate signals. It could change the way we can sense things and the storage of information, and possibilities that we may not have even thought of yet.”
The ability to move, manipulate, and store electrons is key to the vast majority of modern technology, whether we’re trying to harvest energy from the sun or play Plants vs. Zombies on our phone. In a paper published in Nanoscale, the researchers described a way to make electrons do something entirely new: Distribute themselves evenly into a stationary, crystalline pattern. 
“I’m tempted to say it’s almost like a new phase of matter,” Kar says. “Because it’s just purely electronic.”


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#799
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Team designs carbon nanostructure stronger than diamonds

by Brian Bell, University of California, Irvine

Researchers at the University of California, Irvine and other institutions have architecturally designed plate-nanolattices—nanometer-sized carbon structures—that are stronger than diamonds as a ratio of strength to density.

 

In a recent study in Nature Communications, the scientists report success in conceptualizing and fabricating the material, which consists of closely connected, closed-cell plates instead of the cylindrical trusses common in such structures over the past few decades.

"Previous beam-based designs, while of great interest, had not been so efficient in terms of mechanical properties," said corresponding author Jens Bauer, a UCI researcher in mechanical & aerospace engineering. "This new class of plate-nanolattices that we've created is dramatically stronger and stiffer than the best beam-nanolattices."

 

https://phys.org/new...r-diamonds.html



#800
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Carbon Nanostructure Stronger than Diamond By Strength to Density
Brian Wang | April 18, 2020
 

Researchers have architecturally designed plate-nanolattices – nanometer-sized carbon structures – that are stronger than diamonds as a ratio of strength to density.

The team’s design has been shown to improve on the average performance of cylindrical beam-based architectures by up to 639 percent in strength and 522 percent in rigidity.

They designed and fabricating the material, which consists of closely connected, closed-cell plates instead of the cylindrical trusses common in such structures over the past few decades.

They used complex 3D laser printing process called two-photon polymerization direct laser writing. The laser is focused inside a droplet of an ultraviolet-light-sensitive liquid resin, the material becomes a solid polymer where molecules are simultaneously hit by two photons. By scanning the laser or moving the stage in three dimensions, the technique is able to render periodic arrangements of cells, each consisting of assemblies of plates as thin as 160 nanometers.

 

https://www.nextbigf...to-density.html







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: nanotechnology, nano, microtechnology, micro, material science, metamaterials, graphene, atomic engineering, molecular manufacturing, nanobots

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