The development of graphene is closely related to the unique electronic structure, that is, Dirac cones. The cone which represents linear energy dispersion at Fermi level gives graphene massless fermions, leading to various quantum Hall effects, ultra high carrier mobility, and many other novel phenomena and properties.
A pair of light waves - one zipping clockwise the other counterclockwise around a microscopic track - may hold the key to creating the world's smallest gyroscope: one a fraction of the width of a human hair. By bringing this essential technology down to an entirely new scale, a team of applied physicists hopes to enable a new generation of phenomenally compact gyroscope-based navigation systems, among other intriguing applications.
Damage to neural tissue is typically permanent and causes lasting disability in patients, but a new approach has recently been discovered that holds incredible potential to reconstruct neural tissue at high resolution in three dimensions. It demonstrated a method for embedding scaffolding of patterned nanofibers within three-dimensional hydrogel structures, and it was shown that neurite outgrowth from neurons in the hydrogel followed the nanofiber scaffolding by tracking directly along the nanofibers, particularly when the nanofibers were coated with a type of cell adhesion molecule called laminin.
Therapeutic agents intended to reduce dental plaque and prevent tooth decay are often removed by saliva and the act of swallowing before they can take effect. But a team of researchers has developed a way to keep the drugs from being washed away.
A novel nanomechanical plasmonic phase modulator harnesses tiny electron waves called plasmons. It's a step towards enabling computers to process information hundreds of times faster than today's machines.
Researchers have recorded the first direct observations of the micro-scale mechanisms behind the ability of skin to resist tearing. The results could be applied to the improvement of artificial skin, or to the development of thin film polymers for flexible electronics.
Cellulose nanocrystals derived from industrial byproducts have been shown to increase the strength of concrete, representing a potential renewable additive to improve the ubiquitous construction material.
Plants living in arid, mountainous and humid regions of the planet often rely on their leaves to obtain the moisture they need for survival by pulling mist out of the air. But how exactly they manage this feat has been a bit of a mystery - until now.