A team of scientists at Argonne National Laboratory has developed a powerful technique for probing in three dimensions the crystalline structure of cathode materials at the nanoscale inside a battery. In particular, the technique probes what happens during the process of "intercalation" — the insertion of ions between the layers of a cathode when a battery generates electricity.
News Releases: Research Funded by Agencies Participating in the National Nanotechnology Initiative
October 21, 2019(Funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institutes of Health)
October 17, 2019(Funded by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy)
Physicists at the University of Oregon have developed a fast and sensitive bolometer that can measure light at and far above room temperature. A bolometer is a sensitive electrical instrument that measures the power of incident electromagnetic radiation. The new device, which consists of a trampoline-shaped piece of graphene suspended over a hole, offers an alternative to conventional electronic light detectors, such as those found in a smartphone's camera.
October 17, 2019(Funded by the National Science Foundation)
Physicists at MIT and elsewhere have, for the first time, discovered fractal-like patterns in a quantum material—a material that exhibits strange electronic or magnetic behavior as a result of quantum, atomic-scale effects. A fractal is any geometric pattern that occurs again and again, at different sizes and scales, within the same object. The team made this discovery while measuring the material's magnetic domains at the nanoscale.
October 16, 2019(Funded by the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the National Science Foundation)
Trions consist of three charged particles bound together by very weak bonding energy. Although trions can potentially carry more information than electrons in applications such as electronics and quantum computing, trions are typically unstable at room temperature, and the bonds between trion particles are so weak that they quickly fall apart. Now a University of Maryland-led team of researchers has discovered a method to uses carbon nanotubes to synthesize and trap trions that remain stable at room temperature.
October 15, 2019(Funded by U.S. Department of Energy)
Scientists at Rice University have demonstrated how to optimize a method that can sense small concentrations of molecules by amplifying the light they emit when their spectral frequencies overlap with those of nearby plasmonic nanoparticles. These nanoparticles emit coherent electron waves that ripple across the surfaces of the nanoparticles, act as antennas, and enhance the molecules’ emitted light up to 10 times when they are in the “sweet spot” near a given nanoparticle.
October 15, 2019(Funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation)
Researchers at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University have shown, for the first time, that a cheap catalyst can split water and generate hydrogen gas for hours on end in the harsh environment of a commercial device. The reactions that generate hydrogen and oxygen gas take place on different electrodes using different precious metal catalysts. In this case, the scientists replaced the platinum catalyst on the hydrogen-generating side with a catalyst consisting of cobalt phosphide nanoparticles deposited on carbon to form a fine black powder.
October 15, 2019(Funded by the Office of Naval Research and the National Science Foundation)
While many nanomaterials exhibit promising electronic properties, scientists and engineers are still working to best integrate these materials together to eventually create semiconductors and circuits with them. Northwestern Engineering researchers have created two-dimensional heterostructures from two of these materials, graphene and borophene, taking an important step toward creating integrated circuits from these nanomaterials.
October 11, 2019(Funded by the U.S. Department of Energy)
Researchers at the Center for Nanoscale Materials, a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science User Facility, which is located at DOE's Argonne National Laboratory, have reported the cause behind a key quantum property of donut-like nanoparticles called "semiconductor quantum rings." This property may find application in quantum information storage, communication, and computing in future technologies.
October 11, 2019(Funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation)
Most attempts to turn textiles into wearable technology use stiff metallic fibers that alter the texture and physical behavior of the fabric. And coating methods that are successfully able to apply enough material to a textile substrate to make it highly conductive also tend to make the yarns and fabrics too brittle to withstand normal wear and tear. Now researchers at Drexel University have shown that they can create a highly conductive, durable yarn by coating standard cellulose-based yarns with a type of conductive two-dimensional material called MXene. Related video: https://youtu.be/Jxx3pAWvJqY
October 11, 2019(Funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Army Research Office, and the National Science Foundation)
A Berkeley Lab-led team of physicists and materials scientists has, for the first time, unambiguously observed and documented the unique optical phenomena that occur in certain types of synthetic materials called moire superlattices – materials made by layering sheets of single-atom-thick materials on top of one another in precise configurations. The new findings will help researchers understand how to better manipulate materials into light emitters with controllable quantum properties.