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February 19, 2021
A new artificial membrane helps researchers understand proteins in human cell membranes. The membrane rim is made of a detergent (purple), with a center made of lipid molecules found in biological membranes (green and blue), including cholesterol (gold).
New Artificial Membranes Enable Better Understanding of Membrane Proteins
Researchers have created a novel membrane platform for studying the structure and function of membrane proteins in their realistic environment.
February 19, 2021
Simulation of a fluorinated salt demonstrating cation alignment. Addition of electronegative fluorine atoms (green) leads to alignment with electropositive phosphorous centers (orange) in the solid phase causing interactions that lower the melting point.
Adjusting the Dance Tunes the Melt
Understanding Ions’ Subtle Molecular-Level Interactions Allows Scientists to Tune the Melting Point
February 19, 2021
Energy versus momentum depiction of different conditions that give rise to a Kohn anomaly in ordinary metals (at left), versus a topological material called a Weyl semimetal (at right).
New Phenomena for the Design of Future Quantum Devices
Neutron and X-ray scattering shed light on exotic states that determine the electronic properties of materials.
February 3, 2021
Novel research combines linear and radial molecules to create polymers with novel electronic states. The arrows indicate how electron migration flows.
Molecules Bend for Organic Electronics
New electronic ring-containing polymers enable unexpected movement of energy along the backbone connecting the polymer and within each ring.
February 3, 2021
The light from a fluorescent metal organic framework (top) is quenched when the porous material captures explosive molecules (bottom).
Fluorescent Metal Organic Frameworks Go Dark to Detect Explosives
Metal organic framework materials turn fluorescent light signals on or off in the presence of guest molecules.
February 3, 2021
Scientists designed peptide bundles that can be precisely linked to form extremely rigid polymer chains. These chains are much stiffer than other known polymers.
Designer Polymers Created from Peptide Bundles Promise Super-Strong Future Materials
Computational design of bundled peptide building blocks that can be precisely linked provides new ways to create customized polymers.
January 19, 2021
X-ray pulses focused on a liquid jet excite electrons. When the electrons lose energy, a flux of X-rays is released. The original pulse plus the new flux of photons then recirculate, further amplifying the X-rays that can be directed to experiments.
A Sharp New Eye to View Atoms and Molecules
A newly designed X-ray oscillator may enable atomic level precision with intense X-ray pulses.
January 15, 2021
Background: microscopy image of a zinc oxide nanoparticle. Foreground: time-lapsed images as particles merge while moving through a liquid. The lines represent electric fields. Bottom: image of the path particles take before merging.
Dynamic Duos: How Particles Attach
A new quantitative understanding of how, at what distance, and in what shape zinc oxide nanoparticles come together while separated by liquid.
December 23, 2020
A machine learning model incorporates information from a physics simulation to better model and optimize the X-ray pulse energy from a free-electron laser. The model better captures the system response than previous models.
Machine Learning Trims Tuning Time for Electron Beam by 65 Percent
Scientists use a machine learning algorithm to reduce tuning time of a dozen instruments at once.
December 23, 2020
A tiny terahertz laser is the first to reach three key performance goals at once: high power, tight beam, and broad frequency tuning.
Tiny Tunable Terahertz Lasers Ready to Fly in Space
A novel terahertz laser achieves the performance goals critical for new applications in sensing and imaging.
December 23, 2020
An X-ray image taken with a novel X-ray wavefront imager results in high precision measurements of intensity and direction of the X-ray beam.
New X-Ray Camera Achieves New Heights of Precision and Accuracy for Better Experiments
An X-ray image taken with a novel X-ray wavefront imager results in high precision measurements of intensity and direction of the X-ray beam.
December 15, 2020
Center-of-mass velocity flux contour map for the reaction of molecular beans to prepare two types of carbene.
New Study Evaluates Role of Carbenes on the Formation of Soot
Research uses directed gas phase preparation of two carbenes, triplet pentadiynylidene and singlet ethynylcyclopropenylidene.
December 4, 2020
An ultrafast X-ray pulse (magenta) excites a burst of activity (green) at the oxygen site (red) of a nitric oxide molecule. The green arrows represent the excitation and motion of electrons within the molecule.
A Swift Kick to Initiate Electronic Motion in Molecules
Observation of impulsive stimulated X-ray Raman scattering with attosecond soft X-ray pulses.
December 4, 2020
Two techniques—co-localized electron back scattered diffraction imaging (left) and ultrafast optical microscopy (center and right)—help determine how local structural defects affect fast electron movement within a single microscopic crystal.
Defects Slow the Electron’s Dance
Advanced techniques reveal how defects in nanoscale crystals affect how solar photovoltaics perform.
November 30, 2020
A terahertz laser pulse (purple) interacts with an electron beam (red) inside a special copper structure to “chirp” the electrons’ energies, causing the tail of the beam to catch up with the head as it drifts toward the target material (blue dots).
Laser-Driven “Chirp” Powers High-Resolution Materials Imaging
Harnessing the intensity of a terahertz laser pulse brings the resolution of electron scattering closer to the scale of electron and proton motion.
November 30, 2020
Layers of zinc and oxygen atoms (in yellow and blue) are deposited onto the surfaces of nanowires of molybdenum disulfide (in purple). These atoms grow into arrays of semiconductor crystals at sites of defects on the surfaces.
Decorating Semiconductors at the Atomic Scale
Crystals grown from layers of atoms arrange themselves on semiconductor surfaces to add new capabilities.
November 30, 2020
Substituting heavier deuterium (red) for hydrogen in methylammonium (blue-orange-red) slows its swaying so it can interact with vibrations that remove heat, keeping charge carriers hot longer.
Some Like It Hot: Boosting Efficiency in Solar Cells
Neutron scattering and isotopic substitution techniques reveal how to block vibrations that could leak heat from a photovoltaic cell.
November 3, 2020
Top: oscillating moments in a spin chain, forming a magnon. Bottom: neutron scattering data (left) and corresponding theoretical models (right) in sodium manganese oxide corresponding to one-, two-, and three-magnon bound states.
Scientists Discover a New Magnetic Quasiparticle
Neutron scattering reveals a new way for magnetic oscillations to stick together.
November 3, 2020
(a,b) Illustrations of two types of atomic vibration patterns termed H1 and K5 modes in hexagonal iron sulfide (h-FeS). Iron (Fe) and sulfur (S) atoms are depicted as brown and yellow, respectively. Red arrows denote the destabilized atomic displacements.
Material Found in Meteorites Portends New Possibilities for Spintronic Computing
Neutron and X-ray experiments illuminate the magnetic transitions in hexagonal iron sulfide that transform it from a conductor to an insulator.
October 23, 2020
Fluid vortices induced by a swarm of synchronized spinning particles in a liquid-like state. The activity of spinning self-assembled particles produces flows that cause neighboring spinning particles to self-organize into lattice-like structures.
Building Materials from Spinning Particles
Swarms of synchronized active spinning particles exhibit complex collective behavior, ranging from liquid-like states to dynamic crystals.
August 21, 2020
Comparison of atomic force microscopy (AFM) characterization of the surfaces of the bullseye lenses made using the conventional focused ion beam sculpting method (left) and the new electron beam lithography method (right).
Next-Generation Electron Source Hits the Bullseye for Materials Studies
New lens could generate an ion beam that is both small and fast.
August 14, 2020
Optical laser pulses excite electrons in gold nanoparticles (AuNP) attached to a titanium dioxide (TiO2) substrate. Short X-ray pulses count the electrons injected from the nanoparticles into the substrate and monitor their return to the nanoparticles.
Watching Electrons Harvest Light at the Nanoscale
Insight into charge generation induced by light could enable the design of better photocatalysts made from nanomaterials.
August 11, 2020
At center, simulation of ring polymers being stretched in one direction (left). A fraction of ring polymers always forms highly elongated, knotted daisy chains (right), increasing the fluid’s resistance to flow. See how it works in this animation.
Elongated Ring Polymers Get Tied Up in Knots
Controlling the knotting of molecular chains offers new ties from polymer fluids to industrial applications.
July 31, 2020
Machine-learning enabled characterization of a 3D microstructure. This snapshot is from a 2-million molecule simulation of polycrystalline ice. The image shows ice grains and their boundaries.
Machine Learning Probes 3D Microstructures
Machine learning-based algorithm characterizes materials’ microstructure in 3D and real time.
July 17, 2020
Researchers demonstrated the first example of a lipid-based “memcapacitor,” an energy storage device with memory that advances brain-like, synaptic information processing in neuromorphic computing.
Oil and Water Almost Mix in Novel Neuromorphic Computing Components
Lipid-based devices mimic brain-like processing.