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Nature may be making silver nanoparticles on its own

Nanoparticles of silver are being found increasingly in the environment - and in environmental science laboratories. Because they have a variety of useful properties, especially as antibacterial and antifungal agents, silver nanoparticles increasingly are being used in a wide variety of industrial and consumer products. This, in turn, has raised concerns about what happens to them once released into the environment. Now a new research paper adds an additional wrinkle: Nature may be making silver nanoparticles on its own.

Posted: May 11th, 2011

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Consultation: Green Paper on a Common Strategic Framework for future EU research and innovation funding

On 9th February 2011, the European Commission presented a Green Paper which proposes major changes to EU research and innovation funding to make participation easier, increase scientific and economic impact and provide better value for money. The Commission is seeking the views of all interested individuals and organisations on these proposed changes and on the specific questions set out in the Green Paper.

Posted: May 10th, 2011

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New technique improves artificial photosynthesis

This discovery will make it possible to improve photoelectrochemical cells. In the same way that plants use photosynthesis to transform sunlight into energy, these cells use sunlight to drive chemical reactions that ultimately produce hydrogen from water.

Posted: May 10th, 2011

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CO2 makes life difficult for algae

The acidification of the world's oceans could have major consequences for the marine environment. New research shows that coccoliths, which are an important part of the marine environment, dissolve when seawater acidifies.

Posted: May 10th, 2011

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Pyrite nanoparticles from deep-sea hydrothermal vents rich source of iron

Similar to humans, the bacteria and tiny plants living in the ocean need iron for energy and growth. But their situation is quite different than ours - for one, they can't exactly turn to natural iron sources like leafy greens or red meat for a pick-me-up. So where does their iron come from? New research points to a source on the seafloor: nanoparticles of pyrite, or fool's gold, from hydrothermal vents at the bottom of the ocean.

Posted: May 10th, 2011

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CEA-Leti and 5 partners collaborating on self-powered cardiac pacemaker

Leti and five partners are developing a self-powered cardiac pacemaker eight times smaller than current models. This energy self-sufficient device will harvest mechanical energy from the movements of the heart, potentially eliminating the need for battery replacement through post-op surgery and lowering healthcare costs.

Posted: May 10th, 2011

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Nanostrukturen schalten schneller

Rund 100 Nanometer lange Polymerketten koennen als winzige Schalter fuer kuenftige technische Anwendungen dienen. Bisher galt die Reaktionszeit der Nanostrukturen jedoch als zu langsam - eine Gruppe von Forschern der Uni Duisburg-Essen hat nun das Gegenteil bewiesen.

Posted: May 10th, 2011

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Optical control of magnetic effects at the nanoscale

Physicists have succeeded in developing a procedure to merge magneto-optics and plasmonics. The effects which were realized for the first time are already that promising, that their application in electronic components should be possible in the next future.

Posted: May 10th, 2011

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