Scientists have shown that a micromotor fueled by stomach acid can take a bubble-powered ride inside a mouse. These tiny motors, each about one-fifth the width of a human hair, may someday offer a safer and more efficient way to deliver drugs or diagnose tumors.
Friction impacts motion, hence the need to control friction forces. Currently, this is accomplished by mechanistic means or lubrication, but experiments conducted by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have uncovered a way of controlling friction on ionic surfaces at the nanoscale using electrical stimulation and ambient water vapor.
Health care workers must diagnose and isolate Ebola victims at an early stage to have a chance to save them and prevent the virus from spreading. But the most sensitive and quickest diagnostic test produces a small percentage of false negative results that undermine efforts to control the deadly agent. A $100,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant has been awarded to develop a method to reduce the risk of the virus going undetected.
A potential avenue to quantum computing currently generating quite the buzz in the high-tech industry is 'valleytronics', in which information is coded based on the wavelike motion of electrons moving through certain two-dimensional (2D) semiconductors. Now, a promising new pathway to valleytronic technology has been uncovered.
Researchers have discovered that the insulation plastic used in high-voltage cables can withstand a 26 per cent higher voltage if nanometer-sized carbon balls are added. This could result in enormous efficiency gains in the power grids of the future, which are needed to achieve a sustainable energy system.
Therapeutic oligonucleotide analogs represent a new and promising family of drugs that act on nucleic acid targets such as RNA or DNA; however, their effectiveness has been limited due to difficulty crossing the cell membrane. A new delivery approach based on cell-penetrating peptide nanoparticles can efficiently transport charge-neutral oligonucleotide analogs into cells.
By demonstrating a new way to change the amount of electrons that reside in a given region within a piece of graphene, scientists have a proof-of-principle in making the fundamental building blocks of semiconductor devices using the 2D material.
Researchers observed a molecular shuttle powered by kinesin motor proteins and found it to degrade when operating, marking the first time, they say, that degradation has been studied in detail in an active, autonomous nanomachine.
Will it be possible one day to reconfigure electronic microchips however we want, even when they are in use? A recent discovery suggests as much. The researchers have demonstrated that it is possible to create conductive pathways several atoms wide in a material, to move them around at will and even to make them disappear.
Researchers have found an ingenious way to induce magnetism in graphene while also preserving graphene's electronic properties. They have accomplished this by bringing a graphene sheet very close to a magnetic insulator - an electrical insulator with magnetic properties.