The 3D NanoChemiscope is a miracle of state-of-the-art analysis technology. As a further development of well-known microscopic and mass spectroscopic methods, it maps the physical and chemical surfaces of materials down to the atomic level. This instrument, which is unique in the world, not only delivers high-definition images; it also knows what it is 'seeing'.
Scientists now have made the first-ever accurate determination of a solid-state triple point in a substance called vanadium dioxide, which is known for switching rapidly - in as little as one 10-trillionth of a second - from an electrical insulator to a conductor, and thus could be useful in various technologies.
How molecules in biochemical solutions do interact, is a question of great importance for understanding processes in catalysts, functional materials and even in organisms. Until now, scientists could have a look at these interactions by spectroscopy, but it was hard to distinguish the different interactions, which take place simultaneously. A groundbreaking work by HZB-scientist Emad Flear Aziz and theoretical physicist Oliver Kühn from University Rostock could now change the game.
A group of international experts from government, industry and academia have concluded that alternative testing strategies (ATSs) that don't rely on animals will be needed to cope with the wave of new nanomaterials emerging from the boom in nanoscience and nanotechnology.
Platinum is a key material in dye-sensitized solar cells, where it is used to make counter electrodes. A new, 3D form of graphene made from carbon monoxide and lithium oxide was used to replace the platinum with virtually no loss in electrical generating capacity.
A new three-in-one optical element can control light's amplitude, phase, and polarization through a wedding of old-fashioned holograms and state-of-the-art nanoscale features. An unusual state of light, a radially polarized beam, which is important for microscopy and particle manipulation, has been created by sending conventional laser light through this holographic plate.