BES Highlights

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March 4, 2019
To Grow or Not to Grow? That Is the Question for Plants
Regardless of what crops they are growing, farmers want to increase the yields and reduce the use of costly pesticides. Using less of such
March 4, 2019
Forming the Ion that Made the Universe
Scientists have figured out additional ways that the trihydrogen cation, H3+, the most abundant ion in the universe, is
March 1, 2019
Water: Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way
The association or dissociation of ion pairs in water is present in chemical reactions in fuel cells, batteries, and human cells. Scientists have
March 1, 2019
Seeing Coherent Patterns at the Microscopic Scale
In the world around us, it’s easy to see orders and patterns, such as the collective movement of a flock of birds. These patterns, or
March 1, 2019
Squeezed Quantum Dots Produce More Stable Light
Modern synthesis techniques produce nearly ideal quantum-dot light emitters, which are used in quantum-dot displays and TV sets. But what if a
March 1, 2019
Ions on the Edge
Although working with ionic solutions is common in synthesis, separations, and subsurface science, how the ions change their environment and, in
February 26, 2019
Get to the Root: Tiny Poplar Roots Extract More Water than Their Larger Counterparts after Drought
Knowledge of plant root function under stress is largely based on indirect measurements of bulk soil water or nutrient extraction, which limits
February 19, 2019
Silicon and a State of Shock
In addition to being a key material in the semi-conductor industry, and one of the most studied materials at high pressure, silicon as a ceramic
February 11, 2019
X-ray beam induces photo-ejection of an electron from (left) hydrogen and (right) helium.
Measuring the Impossible: X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy of Hydrogen and Helium
Two most abundant elements in the universe, hydrogen & helium, were previously thought to be impossible to measure by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy
February 11, 2019
Early “Fossils” Formed by Tectonics, not Life
Scientists re-evaluated evidence of life in 3.7-billion-year-old rock structures and found that the structures were of geological origin and not
February 11, 2019
Taking Diamond Qubits for a Spin
Solid-state quantum bits, or qubits, offer scalability in a quantum network. Such networks could change how computations are done and how data is
February 11, 2019
How Sunlight Energizes Electrons to Break Nitrogen and Form Ammonia
Ammonia in fertilizer is vital to growing crops. Producing ammonia for fertilizer is an energy-demanding process that requires natural gas to
February 11, 2019
Newly Discovered Design Rules Lead to Better Fuel Cell Catalyst
Creating efficient metal-air batteries, fuel cells, and other energy conversion and storage systems depends, in part, on how quickly oxygen
February 11, 2019
Atomic Snapshots of Photosynthesis
More than 2 billion years ago, tiny organisms on Earth started photosynthesizing. Nearly all life on Earth now depends on photosynthesis but it
February 10, 2019
Chemicals Can Change Their Identity, Thanks to the Liquids Where They Reside
Although solvents are carefully selected in some cases, the liquids are often simply considered a medium to allow the reactants to encounter each
February 10, 2019
How to Best Predict Chemical Reactions of Contaminants in Water
The availability of fresh water is a global issue that’s driving interest in ways to turn wastewater into clean water. Purifying wastewater
February 5, 2019
Hydrogels Change Water and Solute Dynamics
With potential uses ranging from wound dressings to energy storage devices, hydrogels are a promising material. Hydrogels consist of trapped water
February 5, 2019
Controlling Charge Flow by Managing Electron Holes
Detailed knowledge of real-time motion of charge in solar-cell materials could help scientists and engineers design better solar cells. Here,
February 5, 2019
The Subtle, but Significant, Role of Surfaces in Ion Stickiness
In many areas of science and technology, the adsorption of ions to aqueous interfaces plays a key role. For a long time, chemistry and physics
January 22, 2019
Optimizing Electric Fields Yields Better Catalysts
In catalytic reactions, an electric field affects chemical bonds and, therefore, reaction mechanisms, rates, and selectivity. Electric fields,
January 22, 2019
Revealed: Structure of Proton in Liquid Water
Water is the universal solvent, important in biology, geology, and industrial processes. For some time, computational simulations suggested that
January 21, 2019
New Probe for the Secrets of Complex Interfaces
Understanding the detailed nature of complex interfaces has become a quest of profound significance, as it underlies urgently needed advances in
January 11, 2019
Peering into the Mist: How Water Vapor Changes Metal at the Atomic Level
Scientists studied the effect of water vapor and elevated temperatures on a nickel-chromium alloy. They directly observed oxide growth on the alloy
December 12, 2018
How to Best Predict Chemical Reactions of Contaminants in Water
The availability of fresh water is a global issue that’s driving interest in ways to turn wastewater into clean water. Purifying wastewater
December 6, 2018
Subtlety and the Selective Art of Separating Lanthanides
Fundamental understanding of selective recognition and separation of lanthanide ions by chelating agents is of crucial importance for advancing