Open menu

Nanotechnology Spotlight

Behind the buzz and beyond the hype:
Our Nanowerk-exclusive feature articles

RSS Subscribe to our Nanotechnology Spotlight feed

Showing Spotlights 33 - 40 of 1756 in category (newest first):

 

3D printed 'smart glue' leverages DNA assembly at the macroscale

colloidal_gelDesigning systems that build themselves is one of the great dreams of nanotechnology researchers, and they are taking great strides towards developing such 'bottom-up' nanotechnology fabrication techniques. Fabrication processes based on DNA might change this: DNA origami have been heralded as a potential breakthrough for the creation of nanoscale devices. Researchers have now developed methods to assemble DNA-functionalized microparticles into a colloidal gel, and to extrude this gel with a 3D printer at centimeter size scales.

Posted: Jan 29th, 2015

Nanowaste - Nanomaterial-containing products at the end of their life cycle

landfillAt the end of their product life cycle, nanomaterials can enter waste treat ment plants and landfills via diverse waste streams. Little, however, is known about how nanomaterials behave in the disposal phase and whether potential environmental or health risks arise. The current assumption is that stable nanoparticles are neither chemically nor physically altered in waste incineration plants and that they accumulate especially in the residues (e.g. slag). These residues are ultimately dumped. The disposal problem in the case of stable nanoparticles is therefore merely shifted to the subsequent steps in the waste treatment process.

Posted: Jan 27th, 2015

Fully transparent, rollable electronics built with a graphene/carbon nanotube backbone

transparent_electronicsResearchers have successfully built rollable and transparent electronic devices that are not only lightweight, but also don't break easily. They managed to overcome two major challenges associated with the manufacture of flexible electronics: The temperature restriction of plastic substrates and the difficulty of handling flexible electronics during the fabrication process. The team rolled their transistor devices 100 times on a cylinder with radius of 4 mm, without significantly degrading their performance.

Posted: Jan 23rd, 2015

Multiplexing biosensors on a chip for human metabolite detection

hydrogelSo far, there have been very few research reports on single electrode materials that enable the simultaneous detection of different metabolites - such as glucose, urea, cholesterol, and triglycerides - in whole blood. Moreover, it is a considerable challenge to integrate all required materials and devices on a single chip to ultimately produce a multiplexing biosensor array. In new work, researchers demonstrate that biosensors based on conducting polymer hydrogels enable the precise and full-range detection of different metabolites in human blood.

Posted: Jan 22nd, 2015

Elemental 2D analogues of graphene: silicene, germanene, stanene, phosphorene

2D_materialA comprehensive analysis of the fundamental properties, synthesis approaches and the future prospects of silicene, germanene, stanene, and phosphorene. It covers the literature on the fundamental properties of graphene analogous elemental sheets, inclusive of both theoretical and experimental knowledge. Various bottom-up synthesis techniques and top-down exfoliation approaches for the fabrication of two-dimensional elemental sheets are discussed.

Posted: Jan 21st, 2015

Biodegradable graphene can radio-thermally ablate radiation and chemo resistant cancer cells

Transferrin-conjugated_grapheneResearchers have developed a simple method to thermally ablate highly resistant cancer cells using targeted biodegradable graphene nanoparticles. They found that graphene can convert non-ionizing radio waves - the same that are used in FM radios - into heat energy at microscopic levels. This heat is sufficient to completely destroy proteins and DNA inside individual cancer cells, irrespective of any kinds of resistant mechanisms that drives cancer cells at advanced stages.

Posted: Jan 16th, 2015

First demonstration of micromotor operation and payload release in living organism (w/video)

micromotorNew findings address the challenges of operating synthetic motors in living organisms through the use of biocompatible motors that are powered by body fluid (acidic stomach environment). As the zinc body of the motor is dissolved by the acid fuel, the motors are self-destroyed, leaving no harmful chemicals behind. The study reports on the distribution, retention, cargo delivery and toxicity profile of zinc/polymer-based microrockets in a mouse stomach.

Posted: Jan 15th, 2015

Novel mono-elemental semiconductors: arsenene and antimonene join 2D family

arseneneResearchers have identified novel 2D wide-band-gap semiconductors with high stabilities, namely monolayer arsenene and antimonene. These materials are indirect wide-band-gap semiconductors, and under strain, they become direct band-gap semiconductors. For arsenene and antimonene, such dramatic transitions of electronic properties could open a new door for nanoscale transistors with high on/off ratio, blue/UV optoelectronic devices, and nanomechanical sensors based on new ultrathin semiconductors.

Posted: Jan 14th, 2015