Nanotechnology News and Discussions

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Nanotechnology News and Discussions

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Nanotechnology News and Discussions

This thread is for general news and developments of technology at very small scales – including nanoparticles, nanobots, nanofiltration, carbon nanotubes, atomic imaging, materials science, and so on.

More specific and indepth coverage of particular fields will be found in other threads (e.g. graphene).


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Scientists to take a new step in microelectronics' development
May 18, 2021

Researchers at Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University (SPbPU) developed a new approach to determine the best electrode materials composition for solid-state lithium-ion batteries. The results of the study were published in the journal Nanomaterials.

The development of miniature devices such as sensors and Internet of things (IoT) devices requires establishing small and complex power supplies with a high energy density. According to experts, traditional technologies for lithium-ion battery production reach their limits. It is difficult to reduce the size and control the shape of the power source any further in the required nano and micron dimensions. Meanwhile, micro and nanoelectronic technologies, such as Atomic Layer Deposition, can assist in producing miniature solid-state lithium-ion batteries with high specific energy.

Studying the new nanoscale materials for electrodes of lithium-ion batteries, the research group of St. Petersburg Polytechnic University developed a method to determine the electrochemical capacity of each component of the nickel-cobalt oxide system. Transition metal oxides have a high capacity and relatively low costs, which is required to develop lithium-ion batteries. In the investigation of thin films obtained by atomic layer deposition (ALD) were used as anode materials and demonstrated a high charge capacity at high current densities.
https://phys.org/news/2021-05-scientist ... onics.html
“People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but *actually* from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff.” - Steven Moffat
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The latest nanotechnology advances for agriculture
May 24, 2021

Materials behave in unconventional ways at the nanoscale, and by combining knowledge of biology, chemistry, and nanotechnology, we can achieve the unimaginable.

Nanotechnology has the potential to revolutionize agriculture and food systems. Our agricultural system has been facing many challenges with the growing population and the adverse effects of climate change.

As a result of the rise in the global mean temperature, the weather conditions have become more unpredictable and intense. These unfavorable weather conditions are devastating for farmers. The demand for food production is increasing rapidly, and the current production rate will not be enough to satisfy the growing demand. Scientists have turned to nanotechnology to enhance food production.

Nanobiosensors, nanofertilizers, and nanopesticides have the potential to significantly change the agricultural world.
https://www.nanowerk.com/spotlight/spotid=58074.php
“People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but *actually* from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff.” - Steven Moffat
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The birth of a subnanometer-sized soccer ball
May 24, 2021

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Ever since the existence of molecules was proven and molecular reactions were predicted, humans have wanted to visually observe how such events proceed. Such observations of single-molecule reactions are highly important for the fundamental understanding of chemical sciences, which would aid in the development of novel catalysts, materials, or drugs, and help us decipher the complex biochemical processes. However, this was not possible for the longest time in modern chemistry, and so far the information of dynamical processes on the nanometer scale was obtained only from indirect methods because molecules were too small to be visualized.

Recent findings by the researchers at the Center for Nanomedicine within the Institute for Basic Science, South Korea, together with researchers from Japan and Germany may have just changed this. The group successfully observed the bottom-up synthesis of fullerene C60, which is an allotrope of carbon that resembles a soccer ball, and produced a video image detailing the process using single-molecule atomic resolution real-time electron microscopy (SMART-EM). This was made possible with the advent of aberration-corrected transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and the establishment of the conditions for resolving subnanometer-sized objects such as molecules and even single atoms.
https://phys.org/news/2021-05-birth-sub ... -ball.html
“People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but *actually* from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff.” - Steven Moffat
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Shiny mega-crystals that build themselves

by Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology
https://phys.org/news/2021-05-shiny-mega-crystals.html
An international team led by Empa and ETH Zurich researchers is playing with shape-engineered nanoscale building blocks that are up to 100-times larger than atoms and ions. And although these nano "Lego bricks" interact with each other with forces vastly different and much weaker than those holding atoms and ions together, they form crystals all by themselves, the structures of which resemble the ones of natural minerals. These new mega-crystals or superlattices that are depicted on the cover of the latest issue of Nature exhibit unique properties such as superfluorescence—and may well usher in a new era in materials science.

To really appreciate what a team of researchers led by Maksym Kovalenko and Maryna Bodnarchuk has achieved, it is best to start with something mundane: Crystals of table salt (also known as rock salt) are familiar to anyone who has ever had to spice up an overtly bland lunch. Sodium chloride—NaCl in chemical terms—is the name of the helpful chemical; it consists of positively charged sodium ions (Na+) and negatively charged chloride ions (Cl-). You can imagine the ions as beads that strongly attract each other forming densely packed and rigid crystals like the ones we can see in a saltshaker.
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Breakthrough in 3D magnetic nanostructures could transform modern-day computing
May 28, 2021

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Scientists have taken a step towards the creation of powerful devices that harness magnetic charge by creating the first ever three-dimensional replica of a material known as a spin-ice.

Spin ice materials are extremely unusual as they possess so-called defects which behave as the single pole of a magnet.

These single pole magnets, also known as magnetic monopoles, do not exist in nature; when every magnetic material is cut into two it will always create a new magnet with a north and south pole.

For decades scientists have been looking far and wide for evidence of naturally occurring magnetic monopoles in the hope of finally grouping the fundamental forces of nature into a so-called theory of everything, putting all of physics under one roof.
https://phys.org/news/2021-05-breakthro ... n-day.html
“People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but *actually* from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff.” - Steven Moffat
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Scientists look to capture clean energy from our clothing
May 31, 2021

This is the aim of a multi-disciplined team of scientists including from Heriot-Watt University’s Research Institute for Flexible Materials, who are behind a new project to harvest the kinetic energy generated in clothing through state-of-the-art nanotechnology.

The academics, all of whom are based in Scotland and Ireland, are attempting to create a friction based wearable autonomous energy system. They will use cutting-edge nanogenerators, which are designed to capture and reuse the kinetic energy in clothing materials created as the wearer moves. If successful, these tiny, unobtrusive devices will be woven into every-day clothing.

The team say their technology could be available as early as 2027 and capable of powering a host of devices such as mobile phones, smart watches and tablets.

Professor George Stylios from Heriot-Watt’s School of Textiles and Design in the Scottish Borders is leading on the textile aspects of the project. He is investigating ways to develop and integrate the technology into garments.
https://www.nanowerk.com/nanotechnology ... =58131.php
“People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but *actually* from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff.” - Steven Moffat
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Self-aware materials build the foundation for living structures
https://phys.org/news/2021-06-self-awar ... ation.html
by Maggie Pavlick, University of Pittsburgh
An illustration of the novel self-aware metamaterial system as used in a coronary artery stent. The design can sense restenosis when used in a stent, and the same design can be used at a large scale in bridge beams to to self-monitor for defects on the structure. Credit: iSMaRT Lab

From the biggest bridges to the smallest medical implants, sensors are everywhere, and for good reason: The ability to sense and monitor changes before they become problems can be both cost-saving and life-saving.

To better address these potential threats, the Intelligent Structural Monitoring and Response Testing (iSMaRT) Lab at the University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering has designed a new class of materials that are both sensing mediums and nanogenerators, and are poised to revolutionize the multifunctional material technology big and small.

The research, recently published in Nano Energy, describes a new metamaterial system that acts as its own sensor, recording and relaying important information about the pressure and stresses on its structure. The so-called "self-aware metamaterial" generates its own power and can be used for a wide array of sensing and monitoring applications.
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Nanoscale sensors measure elusive water levels in leaves

Jun 03, 2021

(Nanowerk News) Water regulation in leaves is vital to a plant’s health, affecting its growth and yield, disease susceptibility and drought resistance.

A breakthrough technology developed by Cornell University researchers uses nanoscale sensors and fiber optics to measure water status just inside a leaf’s surface, where water in plants is most actively managed.

The engineering feat provides a minimally invasive research tool that will greatly advance the understanding of basic plant biology, and opens the door for breeding more drought-resistant crops. The technology could eventually be adapted for use as an agronomic tool for measuring water status in crops in real time.

https://www.nanowerk.com/nanotechnology ... =58160.php


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Nanoparticles in New Filter Membrane Material Shows Promise in Deactivating Viruses
Jun 06, 2021

Viruses spread in a variety of media - from droplets and aerosols carried by air to being carried by water - and a new filter membrane shows promise in deactivating these pathogens.

Currently, filtration technologies have effectively removed viruses and other pathogens using nanoparticles or reverse osmosis methods. However, their effectiveness as a filter membrane is currently limited by their expensive costs and negative effect on the environment. One example is a nanofilter against viruses, which is made from petroleum-based raw materials. Meanwhile, reverse osmosis processes require an unusually large amount of energy, increasing the costs and carbon footprint involved.

A new design for a filter membrane, made from natural materials, is detailed in the report "An antiviral trap made of protein nanofibrils and iron oxyhydroxide nanoparticles." The new study appears in the latest Nature Nanotechnology.
https://www.sciencetimes.com/articles/3 ... iruses.htm
“People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but *actually* from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff.” - Steven Moffat
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