Nanotechnology Spotlight – Latest Articles

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Showing Spotlights 1 - 8 of 176 in category All (newest first):


Dual-functional epidermal patch with capability of harvesting and storing the energy in sweat

sweat-on-skinSelf-charging biosupercapacitors (BSCs) that can store energy and be self-charged via chemical or solar energy conversion through bioreaction have recently attracted considerable attention. As human sweat also contains a high concentration of lactate biofuel, the harvesting and storage of the bioenergy in sweat holds the potential to provide the power for wearable electronics. A new wearable hybrid device functions as both a biofuel cell and a supercapacitor.

Jul 8th, 2021

High activity and durable oxygen evolution single atoms supported by tungsten carbide

crystal-particleScientists have used metal carbides as the carrier to support the transition metal Fe and Ni atoms to engineer single-atom oxygen evolution catalysts for the first time. Distinct from previous studies, this novel metal carbide support shows obvious advantages for supporting different single atoms, especially its non-strong bonding features, which resulted in high mobility of the supported atoms, which might be the key point for realizing excellent OER activities.

Jul 2nd, 2021

Triboelectric nanogenerators to the rescue if you lose your sense of touch

fingertip-touchResearchers report an in vitro and in vivo proof-of-concept for the capacity of triboelectric nanogenerator (TENG) technology to function as a simple, scalable, inexpensive, and self-powered device for tactile sensory restoration. This integrated tactile sensory restoration device powers itself and is suitable for implantation. It bypasses damaged nerves and activate sensory neurons at various levels of electrical potential, generated by different levels of tactile pressure on the implanted device.

Jul 1st, 2021

van der Waals heterostructures harness ionic power from photo-induced ion transport

heterostructuresIn general, there are three types of driving force for ion transport: electric field; mechanical pressure; and concentration gradient. Recently, light has been propsoed as a fourth. Now, researchers report the incorporation of a transition metal dichalcogenides based van der Waals multilayer heterostructure into nanofluidic materials, and demonstrate a new photo-induced active ion transport phenomenon. This will inspire a broad range of fundamental research and practical application for light-controlled ionic circuits, artificial photosynthesis, biomimetic energy conversion, and so on.

Mar 4th, 2021

How to power implantable and ingestible electronics

smart-pillA major challenge in the development of implantable and ingestible biomedical electronic devices is the limited lifetime of their power sources. The energy requirements of these devices are highly dependent on their application and the complexity of the required electrical systems. The power unit, which is composed of one or more energy sources - batteries, energy-harvesting, and energy transfer - as well as power management circuits, supplies electrical energy to the whole system.

Feb 16th, 2021

A lithium-air battery with long cycle life and low overpotentials

In the search for battery technologies that one day could replace lithium-ion batteries and meet power demands within the size and cost constraints of car makers, aerospace and other industries, researchers are exploring lithium-air batteries (LAB). Generally, to make LAB technology practical, two goals are highly important: a novel cathode that uses a highly active and stable catalysts to enhance ORR and OER kinetics; and a proper electrolyte design that can promote the solvent-based growth mechanism for the discharge products.

Dec 29th, 2020

Concept design for a user-powered, refreshable Braille e-book reader for the blind

brailleIn order to make dynamic written content, for instance a news reader, available for blind or vision-impaired people, scientists have come up with various designs of sheet-type, refreshable Braille displays. Expanding the use of nanotechnologies in designing next-generation Braille readers, researchers now have successfully demonstrated a refreshable Braille display system by using a safe high-voltage power source - a triboelectric nanogenerator.

Nov 5th, 2020

A new breakthrough in lithium-silicon batteries

nanocompositeResearchers have discovered a novel 'sandwiched' silicon electrode structure that can withstand 500 cycles and deliver capacities three times larger than graphite. They used freestanding sheets made of carbon nanotubes - bucky papers - for sandwiching silicon nanoparticles. These nanotubes form a quasi-three-dimensional structure and hold silicon nanoparticles together even after 100 cycles and mitigate electrical resistance arising from breaking of particles. The sandwiched silicon anode was able to withstand discharging rates as high as 4C.

Jul 22nd, 2020