Electricity and magnetism rule our digital world. Semiconductors process electrical information, while magnetic materials enable long-term data storage. A research team has discovered a way to fuse these two distinct properties in a single material, paving the way for new ultrahigh density storage and computing architectures.
The various patterns that atoms of a solid material can adopt, called crystal structures, can have a huge impact on its properties. Being able to accurately predict the most stable crystal structure for a material has been a longstanding challenge for scientists. Researchers calculated the lattice energy of benzene, a simple yet important molecule in pharmaceutical and energy research, to sub-kilojoule per mole accuracy - a level of certainty that allows polymorphism to be resolved.
Gallium arsenide a semiconductor composed of gallium and arsenic is well known to have properties that promise practical applications. In the form of nanowires it has particular potential for use in solar cell manufacture and optoelectronics in many of the same applications that silicon is commonly used. But its natural semiconducting ability requires tuning to make it more desirable for use in manufacturing. New work offers a novel approach to such tuning.
Semiconducting polymers can be used, for example, for the absorption of sun light in solar cells. By incorporating organic tin into the plastic, light can be absorbed over a wide range of the solar spectrum.
NIST recently issued Reference Material (RM) 8027, the smallest known reference material ever created for validating measurements of these man-made, ultrafine particles between 1 and 100 nanometers in size.
The European project E2SWITCH is aiming to develop new electronic systems with ultra-low energy consumption. The nine partners, universities, research institutes and companies, are committed to making these 'circuits of tomorrow' more energy efficient.
In a step that could lead to longer battery life in smartphones and lower power consumption for large-screen televisions, researchers have extended the lifetime of blue organic light emitting diodes by a factor of 10.
A novel type of resonant cavity serves as a prison for photons. The cavity confines light in all three dimensions in space inside a photonic crystal. The crystals have a structure similar to how atoms are arranged in diamond gems.
Researchers exploit the self-organization of semiconducting nanocrystals by the Stranski-Krasnov (SK) mode of crystal growth for producing ordered, highly dense, and highly uniform quantum dots. This bottom-up approach yields much better results than the conventional photolithographic or top-down methods widely used for the fabrication of nanostructures.
Researchers are reporting a new, inexpensive and simple way to make transparent, flexible transistors that could help bring roll-up smartphones with see-through displays and other bendable gadgets to consumers in just a few years.
Nanotech Insights, a quarterly newsletter dedicated to the field of nanoscience and nanotechnology, has released a special double issue on nanotechnology-related Defence, Aerospace and National Security.