Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are well-ordered, lattice-like crystals. The nodes of the lattices are metals, which are connected by organic molecules. The most impressive features of MOFs are their extremely high surface area, high porosity, and tunable pore sizes, which are remarkable advantages over other porous materials (e.g., zeolites and carbons). With their special structure and large surface area, MOFs open up new opportunities for alternative systems for gas and energy storage (e.g. carbon dioxide and hydrogen storage), in catalysis, chemical sensing, as nanoreactors, and in drug delivery, making them hugely interesting for both university research and industry.
Since the early days of molecular electronics, tremendous progress has been achieved both theoretically and experimentally by scientists and engineers who were fascinated by intriguing physical, chemical phenomena, and potential device applications of molecular junctions. In a recent paper, scientists review recent experimental efforts for pursuing high-yield functional molecular devices, in which a bundle of molecules (the contacted molecules number more than 1000) is contained in a junction.
Nanotechnology is becoming a crucial driving force behind innovation in medicine and healthcare, with a range of advances including nanoscale therapeutics, biosensors, implantable devices, drug delivery systems, and imaging technologies. This article provides a comprehensive overview of healthcare advances that may be possible through nanotechnology, ranging from fitness monitoring, prevention, diagnosis to therapy, and everything in between.
The robustness, accuracy, and validity of an atomistic simulations hinge on the appropriate choice of force fields. Force fields are key for modeling the interaction between atoms of a matter under study, and the challenge is to have an accurate force field working for any specific material at any desired temperature. To serve this objective and make a benchmark as well as a shortcut for users to find their best force fields, scientists have examined a number of force fields for materials that are popular in micro- and nanotechnologies.
Modern-day electronics or communication technology would not exist without electron microscopy, and the same can be said for many other types of technology. Beyond imaging, the focused beam of electrons is also used for analysis of the chemical composition, the crystal structure, and many other useful things. In new work, researchers have proposed to use graphene as a two-dimensional vacuum chamber, and build a two-dimensional electron microscope, where the electrons fly from the electron gun to the target without ever leaving the graphene sheet.
Steam is important for desalination, hygiene systems, and sterilization; and in remote areas where the sun is the only source of energy, being able to generate steam with solar energy could be very useful. Researchers now have found that the mushroom structure can surprisingly benefit solar steam generation. The stipe of the mushroom can serve as efficient water supply path, meanwhile, due to the extreme small ratio of the areas of fibrous stipe and black pileus, only little heat (useless heat loss) conducted into water.
Researchers have demonstrated a fully integrated and packaged wireless sensor for environmental monitoring applications. The disposable sensor was developed using low-cost additive manufacturing technologies; namely, inkjet printing and 3D printing. This is a demonstration of 3D-printed fully-integrated System-on-Package (SoP) employing inkjet-printed sensors. This work could pave the way for low-cost disposable fully integrated wireless sensor nodes.
Research groups around the world are taking big strides towards developing ultrathin and flexible sensor devices that could be attached to the skin, or even organs, and monitor vital body functions. However, the adhesion to skin of many of these sensor patches is weak. A new milestone study on skin adhesives for wearable devices is about to change that. It demonstrates that it is possible to strongly and non-invasively attach soft wearable sensors and other devices to dry or wet skin.