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Nanotechnology General News

The latest news from academia, regulators
research labs and other things of interest

Microrockets fueled by water neutralize chemical and biological warfare agents

With fears growing over chemical and biological weapons falling into the wrong hands, scientists are developing microrockets to fight back against these dangerous agents, should the need arise. In a new paper, they describe new spherical micromotors that rapidly neutralize chemical and biological agents and use water as fuel.

Posted: Oct 29th, 2014

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New solar power nanotechnology material converts 90 percent of captured light into heat

A multidisciplinary engineering team developed a new nanoparticle-based material for concentrating solar power plants designed to absorb and convert to heat more than 90 percent of the sunlight it captures. The new material can also withstand temperatures greater than 700 degrees Celsius and survive many years outdoors in spite of exposure to air and humidity.

Posted: Oct 29th, 2014

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Nanosafety research: Are scientists on the right track?

Empa toxicologist Harald Krug has lambasted his colleagues in the journal Angewandte Chemie. He evaluated several thousand studies on the risks associated with nanoparticles and discovered no end of shortcomings: poorly prepared experiments and results that don't carry any clout. Instead of merely leveling criticism, however, Empa is also developing new standards for such experiments within an international network.

Posted: Oct 29th, 2014

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Imaging of electrons moving around at 80,000m per second in semiconductor

Researchers succeeded in direct observation and video imaging of electron flow at 80,000m per second in a semiconductor. They did so by combining a new laser pulse light source and a photoemission electron microscope (PEEM) to develop an ultra high-speed microscope that enabled visualization of electrons on a 20 nanometer and 200 femtosecond scale.

Posted: Oct 29th, 2014

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Can the wave function of an electron be divided and trapped?

Electrons are elementary particles - indivisible, unbreakable. But new research suggests the electron's quantum state - the electron wave function - can be separated into many parts. That has some strange implications for the theory of quantum mechanics.

Posted: Oct 28th, 2014

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Self-assembly of layered membranes

Recently, scientists used self-assembly under controlled conditions to create a membrane consisting of layers with distinctly different structures. Now, the team utilized small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) to better determine these structures and study how they form. This new information paves the way for design and synthesis of hierarchical structures with biomedical applications.

Posted: Oct 28th, 2014

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A new cheap and efficient method to improve SERS

Researchers have developed a new method to overcome the problems of Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS), an ultra-sensitive analytical technique able to detect chemicals in very low concentration, even up to single molecules, and also to retrieve structural information.

Posted: Oct 28th, 2014

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Watching the hidden life of materials

Scientists have succeeded in simultaneously observing the reorganizations of atomic positions and electron distribution during the transformation of the 'smart material' vanadium dioxide from a semiconductor into a metal - in a timeframe a trillion times faster than the blink of an eye. This marks the first time experiments have been able to distinguish changes in a material's atomic-lattice structure from the relocation of the electrons in such a blazingly fast process.

Posted: Oct 27th, 2014

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