Researchers have merged two important technologies of nanomanipulation - plasmonic tweezers and magnetically driven microbots - in order to overcome their individual limitations and achieve new functionalities that did not exist before. This technique is applicable to different types of particles in various fluids. The resulting mobile nanotweezers' performance combines the best of both worlds: capturing, maneuvering, and positioning sub micrometer objects of various materials at low illumination intensities, high speeds, and with great control.
Nanofluidics is the study and application of fluids in and around geometries with nanoscale characteristic dimensions. The field of nanofluidics is not brand-new. Some issues associated with nanoscale fluidics have been occasionally dealt with by researchers in membrane science, colloid science, and chemical engineering for many decades. A recent review article provides a selected overview of the recent progress, rather than a comprehensive review of the entire field.
Optics and mesoscopic physics teams have discovered a new cooling mechanism concerning electronic components made of graphene deposited on boron nitride. The efficiency of this mechanism allowed them to reach electric intensities at the intrinsic limit of the laws of conduction. This new mechanism, which exploits the two-dimensional nature of the materials opens a 'thermal bridge' between the graphene sheet and the substrate. Researchers have demonstrated the effectiveness of this mechanism by imposing in graphene levels of electrical current still unexplored, up to the intrinsic limit of the material and without any degradation of the device.
Researchers propose novel flexible Mn-doped zirconium metal-organic frameworks nanocubes for highly effective combination of microwave dynamic and thermal therapy against cancer. This is the first report of determining the microwave thermal conversion efficiency, which can be used to evaluate, compare, and predict the microwave sensitivity of different microwave-sensitive agents. More importantly, such Mn-ZrMOF nanocubes generate abundant reactive oxygen species of hydroxyl radicals under microwave irradiation.
The role of artificial nanomotors integrated with therapeutic capabilities is a very promising field for clinical applications of medical nanotechnology. Researchers now have demonstrated the intelligent design of nanomotors with a single coating of ferrite, which act as a spacer layer as well as providing therapeutic potential by magnetic hyperthermia. These motors can be remotely maneuvered. The team also tackled the problem of magnetic agglomeration associated with ferromagnetic nanomotors, which limits their biomedical application.
In trying to bring brain-like (neuromorphic) computing closer to reality, researchers have been working on the development of memory resistors, or memristors, which are resistors in a circuit that 'remember' their state even if you lose power. Now, scientists have discovered non-volatile memory effect in atomically thin 2D materials such as MoS2. This effect is similar to memristors or RRAM in metal oxide materials. These devices can be collectively labeled atomristor, in essence, memristor effect in atomically thin nanomaterials or atomic sheets.
Topological superconductivity is an interesting state of matter, partly because it is associated with quasiparticle excitations, which are Majorana fermions, i.e. particles that are their own antiparticles, obeying non-Abelian statistics and therefore being of prime interest for topological quantum computing. A well-known example are chiral superconductors with px±ipy-wave pairing of electrons into a condensate of Cooper pairs, the carriers of superconductivity. Researchers suggest to consider mesoscopic samples, confined to the energetically favorable domain size, as a suitable platform to verify and potentially control the chiral domains.
Crossing the blood-brain barrier (BBB) is the object of intensive research in nanotechnology and biomedicine for developing new therapies against brain cancer and for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. For this reason, it is extremely important to develop realistic models of the BBB, which mimic as most accurately as possible the in vivo environment. The development of high-resolution 3D-printing technologies has now enabled researchers to develop a realistic 3D bio-hybrid microfluidic model of BBB inspired by the in vivo neurovasculature.