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June 19, 2019
Hybrids expand and contract. Light micrographs (top) show the expansion and contraction of a crystal-gel hybrid. In the top, i-vi correspond to the red circles (time points) in the bottom. The separation between the ruler’s major ticks is 100 micrometers.
Highly Elastic and Self-Healing Protein Crystals
Infusion of a specialized gel throughout a protein structure produces highly expandable crystals that could find use in energy conversion & filtration
June 19, 2019
Scientists demonstrate the polymer healing process and recovery of extreme stretchability.
Super-stretchy, Self-healing, Tunable Polymers
Discovery of novel polymers with extreme stretching, vibration suppression, and self-healing.
June 19, 2019
Schematic illustration of the selenium (Se) impregnation process (top images), photograph of the resulting Se-impregnated carbon cathode material (bottom left), and scanning electron microscope analysis cross-section showing uniform distribution of Se.
Novel Electrodes Enhance Battery Capacity
New self-supporting composite metal material doubles the volumetric energy and achieves fast charging rates in batteries.
June 13, 2019
Topologically directed design of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) for separating mixtures. By using linker molecules with different aspect ratios (thanks to structures bptc and abtc), scientists obtained two robust MOFs with different structures.
Designer Frameworks for Refining Higher Octane Fuels
Metal-organic frameworks designed with a topology-guided approach show higher efficiency than commercial benchmarks.
June 11, 2019
A team identified RE3Bi7 (RE = neodymium or samarium), which has a framework of bismuth–bismuth bonds (purple). The fragment of the differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) heating curve (red) shows an anomaly that may have inhibited discovery.
Found: New Bismuth Compounds in Well-Known Systems of Two Elements
Scientists discover an unexpected source of new materials, with potential for energy applications.
June 11, 2019
Shifting the magnetic field relative to the textured surface (left) reconfigures the fluid surface (graded orange indicates relative height; darkest areas are macroscale features).
Flowing for Function
A flowing magnetically responsive liquid seamlessly regulates the shape and properties of solids, letting them perform an array of jobs.
May 30, 2019
A boron-containing phase (borophene) (dark blue) is shown on a copper substrate. The inset (top right) illustrates a diffraction pattern (of the area marked by the white square inside the borophene domain) that confirms it’s a new phase.
Raised on Copper: A New Material for Tougher Devices
Discovery of new boron-containing phase opens the door for resilient flexible electronics.
May 30, 2019
This image shows a rendering (gray and pink) of the molecular structure of a peptoid polymer that was studied by a team led by Berkeley Lab and University of California, Berkeley.
Bringing Plastic’s Building Blocks into Atomic-Scale Focus
Researchers capture detailed images of polymers, using electron-based imaging and computer simulations.
May 30, 2019
Optical images of sodium deposited from an electrolyte as electrical current of 1 mA/cm2 (seeded with blue particles for visualizing the associated flow of electrolyte).
Weighty Polymers Impact Battery Stability and Safety
Materials prevent battery failure by inhibiting tree-like growths.
May 30, 2019
Radiochemical technicians David Denton and Karen Murphy use hot cell manipulators at Oak Ridge National Laboratory during the production of actinium-227.
Improving Isotope Supply for a Cancer-Fighting Drug
Production of actinium-227 ramps up for use in a drug to fight prostate cancer that has spread to bone.
May 30, 2019
SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory researchers suggest taking advantage of the random spikes inherent in X-ray free electron laser pulses to study the pulses’ interactions with matter. The method is called pump-probe ghost imaging.
Ghostly Images Could Ease Tracking of Fleeting Reactions
New method could enable studying the fastest interactions of ultrabright X-rays with matter, a vital way of learning about chemical reactions.
May 30, 2019
Color changes in this experimental snapshot track velocities of magnetic rollers comprising an emergent vortex. The fastest particles are located toward the center. Velocity scale is in centimeter/second. Scale bar is 2 μm.
Tiny Vortices Could One Day Haul Microscopic Cargo
The behavior of active magnetic liquids suggests new pathways to transport particles across surfaces and build materials that self-heal.
April 19, 2019
Slow Charge Generation Plays Big Role in Model Material for Solar Cells
To design molecular solar cells, sensors, etc., researchers need to know how light creates electricity on an atomic scale. This isn’t easy
April 19, 2019
Splitting Water Fast! Catalyst Works Faster than Mother Nature
Water oxidation provides the electrons and protons required in natural photosynthesis to convert solar energy into chemical energy that it is
April 18, 2019
Driving Chemical Reactions by Remote Control
Some chemical bonds are tough to re-arrange because it’s hard to access them. This aligns with the conventional wisdom that to make and break
April 15, 2019
Team Takes Fluoride from Taps and Toothpaste to Batteries
Researchers discovered a new liquid electrolyte named BTFE. The electrolyte could replace the molten salt currently used in fluoride-based
April 9, 2019
New Molecular Blueprint Aids Study of Photosynthesis
Discovered decades ago, a large protein complex called NAD(P)H dehydrogenase-like complex (NDH) helps regulate the steps of photosynthesis where
April 9, 2019
Catching Fast Changes in Excited Molecules
Scientists often employ nonlinear spectroscopies in the optical, infrared, and radiofrequency regimes to probe ultrafast molecular dynamics and
April 8, 2019
Atomic Maps Reveal How Iron Rusts
Both underneath our feet and in the skyscrapers towering above, iron is constantly reacting. In the soil, these reactions can affect both nutrient
April 8, 2019
Strain and Defects Grow in Tiny Magnetite Crystals When Oxidized
Solid-water interfaces are primary sites for physiochemical phenomena in natural and technological systems, especially for reactions that occur at
April 8, 2019
A New View on a Very Old Problem: Evolution of the Photochemical Reaction Centers
All available evidence supports the hypothesis that the reaction center, the pigment-protein complex that uses light to produce chemicals that
March 21, 2019
How Does Mother Nature Tackle the Tough Triple Bond Found in Nitrogen?
For every molecule of nitrogen transformed to ammonia, nitrogenase makes at least one molecule of hydrogen (H2), which has been a
March 21, 2019
A Detailed View of the Ancestor of Photosynthesis
By studying photosynthesis, scientists can uncover key details about how organisms use light to drive their metabolism. This fundamental
March 14, 2019
New geochemical research clearly shows how toxic material like uranium binds with iron-bearing minerals like hematite in the soil, allowing scientists to predict long-term behavior.
Fitting a Square Peg in a Round Hole: The Surprising Structure of Uranium Bound in Hematite
An atomic view of how toxic uranium binds to iron minerals in the environment enables better predictions of its behavior.
March 8, 2019
Unique Interface and Unexpected Behavior Help Explain How Heavy Metals Act
Solvent extraction, the go-to technology for reprocessing nuclear waste or refining rare earths and precious metals, involves the preferential