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Physics - Materials Science - 08.04.2021
The Spintronics Technology Revolution Could Be Just a Hopfion Away
Pioneering study co-led by Berkeley Lab has significance for next-gen information technologies Artist's drawing of characteristic 3D spin texture of a magnetic hopfion. Berkeley Lab scientists have created and observed 3D hopfions. The discovery could advance spintronics memory devices.

Materials Science - Chemistry - 07.04.2021
Designing Selective Membranes for Batteries Using a Drug Discovery Toolbox
By binding specific ions in specially designed cages within its pores, a new membrane could enable more efficient flows in energy storage devices Illustration of caged lithium ions in a new polymer membrane for lithium batteries. Scientists at Berkeley Lab's Molecular Foundry used a drug-discovery toolbox to design the selective membranes.

Physics - Materials Science - 05.04.2021
Artificial photosynthesis devices that improve themselves with use
Artificial photosynthesis devices that improve themselves with use
In a finding that could help make artificial photosynthesis a practical method for producing hydrogen fuel, researchers have discovered why a water-splitting device made with cheap and abundant materials unexpectedly becomes more efficient during use. The new understanding of this mechanism could radically accelerate the commercialization of technologies that turn light and water into carbon-free hydrogen fuel, the researchers say.

Materials Science - Economics / Business - 02.04.2021

Physics - Materials Science - 01.04.2021
Computational Tool for Materials Physics Growing in Popularity
A new piece of software developed at Caltech makes it easier to study the behavior of electrons in materials-even materials that have been predicted but do not yet exist. The software, called Perturbo, is gaining traction among researchers. Perturbo calculates at a quantum level how electrons interact and move within a material, providing useful microscopic details about so-called electron dynamics.

Physics - Materials Science - 31.03.2021
Scientists uncover a process that stands in the way of making quantum dots brighter
The results have important implications for today's TV and display screens and for future technologies where light takes the place of electrons and fluids. Bright semiconductor nanocrystals known as quantum dots give QLED TV screens their vibrant colors. But attempts to increase the intensity of that light generate heat instead, reducing the dots' light-producing efficiency.

Materials Science - Chemistry - 30.03.2021
Research given significant boost to develop lithium-rich battery cathodes
A team of scientists, including those based at the University of Oxford as part of the Faraday Institution CATMAT project, researching next-generation cathode materials have made a significant breakthrough in understanding oxygen-redox processes involved in lithium-rich cathode materials. The paper proposes strategies that offer potential routes to increase the energy density of lithium-ion batteries.

Physics - Materials Science - 29.03.2021
New Pathway to Harnessing the Sun for a Clean Energy Future
New Pathway to Harnessing the Sun for a Clean Energy Future
Berkeley Lab co-led collaboration with DESY and TU Freiberg brings us a step closer to more efficient photovoltaics and solar fuel systems In the past 50 years, scientists have made great advances in photovoltaic technologies that convert sunlight into electricity, and artificial photosynthesis devices that convert sunlight and water into carbon-free fuels.

Materials Science - Physics - 29.03.2021
Tires turned into graphene that makes stronger concrete
Tires turned into graphene that makes stronger concrete
Rice lab's optimized flash process could reduce carbon emissions This could be where the rubber truly hits the road. Rice University scientists have optimized a process to convert waste from rubber tires into graphene that can, in turn, be used to strengthen concrete. The environmental benefits of adding graphene to concrete are clear, chemist James Tour said.

Physics - Materials Science - 28.03.2021
Electromagnetic Fields of Nanostructures Visualized in 3D for the First Time
Electromagnetic Fields of Nanostructures Visualized in 3D for the First Time
Researchers at TU Graz and the University of Graz, together with experts from France, have succeeded in imaging surface phonons in 3D for the first time. This success could accelerate the development of new, efficient nanotechnologies. Whether for microscopy, data storage or sensor technology, many advanced technological applications that require specific functions rely on the structure of the electromagnetic field near the surfaces of materials.

Chemistry - Materials Science - 25.03.2021
First closeups of how a lithium-metal electrode ages
Scientists have documented a process that makes these next-gen batteries lose charge - and eventually some of their capacity for storing energy - even when a device is turned off. The same process that drains the battery of your cell phone even when it's turned off is even more of a problem for lithium-metal batteries, which are being developed for the next generation of smaller, lighter electronic devices, far-ranging electric vehicles and other uses.

Materials Science - 23.03.2021
Knitting roads
Knitting roads
Empa scientists are investigating how roads could be reinforced with simple means and recycled easily after use. Their tools are a robot and a few meters of string. A robotic arm lays out a string in a mandala-like pattern on a bed of gravel. What appears to be a contemporary art performance is basic research that explores new ways in road construction.

Materials Science - Chemistry - 22.03.2021
Recyclable ’veggie’ battery could power future devices
A new type of 3D-printed battery which uses electrodes made from vegetable starch and carbon nanotubes could provide mobile devices with a more environmentally-friendly, higher-capacity source of power. A team of engineers led from the University of Glasgow have developed the battery in a bid to make more sustainable lithium-ion batteries capable of storing and delivering power more efficiently.

Materials Science - Chemistry - 18.03.2021
The invisible keyhole
The invisible keyhole
Hard times for burglars and safecrackers: Empa researchers have developed an invisible "keyhole" made of printed, transparent electronics. Only authorized persons know where to enter the access code. At first glance, Empa researcher Evgeniia Gilshtein's idea seems inconspicuous - or more precisely, invisible.

Physics - Materials Science - 18.03.2021
Teamwork makes light shine ever brighter
Teamwork makes light shine ever brighter
Combined energy sources return a burst of photons from plasmonic gold nanogaps If you're looking for one technique to maximize photon output from plasmons , stop. It takes two to wrangle. Rice University physicists came across a phenomenon that boosts the light from a nanoscale device more than 1,000 times greater than they anticipated.

Materials Science - Life Sciences - 17.03.2021
Research examines how to improve the measurement of the surface viscosity of filaments and membranes
Researchers at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) have published a scientific paper that lays the foundation for developing a more precise method of measuring surface viscosity in liquid filaments and biological membranes with viscous surfaces. This development could be applied in the food, pharmaceutical or biomedical industries.

Materials Science - Chemistry - 15.03.2021
Voltage from wood
Voltage from wood
Researchers at ETH Zurich and Empa have chemically modified wood and made it more compressible, turning it into a mini-generator. When compressed, it generates an electrical voltage. Such wood could serve as a biosensor or as a building material that harvests energy. As Ingo Burgert and his team at ETH Zurich and Empa have proven time and again: wood is so much more than just a building material.

Physics - Materials Science - 15.03.2021
How do good metals go bad?
How do good metals go bad?
New measurements have solved a mystery in solid state physics: How is it that certain metals do not seem to adhere to the valid rules? We all have a clear picture in mind when we think of metals: We think of solid, unbreakable objects that conduct electricity and exhibit a typical metallic sheen. The behaviour of classical metals, for example their electrical conductivity, can be explained with well-known, well-tested physical theories.

Materials Science - Environment - 15.03.2021
Voltage from the parquet
Voltage from the parquet
Researchers at Empa and ETH Zurich have made wood compressible and turned it into a micro-generator. When it is loaded, an electrical voltage is generated. In this way, the wood can serve as a bio-sensor - or generate usable energy. The latest highlight: To ensure that the process does not require aggressive chemicals, naturally occurring wood-degrading fungi take over the task of modifying the wood.

Physics - Materials Science - 12.03.2021
Start small to answer big questions about photosynthesis
Start small to answer big questions about photosynthesis
New scientific techniques are revealing the intricate role that proteins play in photosynthesis. Despite being discovered almost 300 years ago, photosynthesis still holds many unanswered questions for science, particularly the way proteins organise themselves to convert sunlight into chemical energy and, at the same time, protect plants from too much sunlight.
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