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Nano News & Events
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> Image: The University of Texas at Dallas The list of potential applications for a new electrically conducting fiber—artificial muscles, exoskeletons and morphing aircraft—sounds like something out of science fiction or a comic book. With a list like that, it’s got to be a pretty special fiber… and it is. The fiber, made from sheets of carbon nanotubes wrapped around a rubber core, can be stretched to 14 times its original length and actually increase its electrical conductivity while being stretched, without losing any of its resistance. An international research team based at the University of Texas at Dallas initially targeted the new super fiber for artificial muscles and for capacitors whose storage capacity increases tenfold when the fiber is stretched. However, the researchers believe that the material could be used as interconnects in flexible electronics and a host of other related applications. In research published in the journal Science , the team describes how they devised a method for wrapping electrically conductive sheets of carbon nanotubes around the rubber core in such a way that the fiber's resistance doesn’t change when stretched, but its conductivity increases. You can watch a demonstration in the video below: “We make the inelastic carbon nanotube sheaths of our sheath-core fibers super stretchable by modulating large buckles with small buckles, so that the elongation of both buckle types can contribute to elasticity, said Ray Baughman, senior author of the paper and director of the Alan G. MacDiarmid NanoTech Institute at UT Dallas, in a press release. “These amazing fibers maintain the same electrical resistance, even when stretched by giant amounts, because electrons can travel over such a hierarchically buckled sheath as easily as they can traverse a straight sheath.” The researchers have also been able to add a thin coat of rubber to the sheath-core fibers and then another carbon nanotube sheath to create strain sensors and artificial muscles. In this setup, the buckled nanotube sheets act as electrodes and the thin rubber coating serves as the dielectric. Voilà! You have a fiber capacitor. “This technology could be well-suited for rapid commercialization,” said Raquel Ovalle-Robles, one of the paper’s authors, in the press release. “The rubber cores used for these sheath-core fibers are inexpensive and readily available. The only exotic component is the carbon nanotube aerogel sheet used for the fiber sheath.”
Publishing: Justin Gooding of the University of New South Wales will serve as editor-in-chief
The NanoBusiness Commercialization Association (NanoBCA) would like to congratulate the winners of the 20th Annual Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is recognizing landmark green chemistry technologies developed by industrial pioneers and leading scientists that turn climate risk and other environmental problems into business opportunities, spurring innovation and economic development. “From academia to business, we congratulate those who bring innovative solutions that will help solve some of the most critical environmental problems,” said Jim Jones, EPA’s Assistant Administrator for Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. “These innovations reduce the use of energy, hazardous chemicals and water, while cutting manufacturing costs and sparking investments. In some cases they turn pollution into useful products. Ultimately, these manufacturing processes and products are safer for people’s health and the environment. We will continue to work with the 2015 winners as their technologies are adopted in the marketplace.” The Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award winners were honored at a ceremony in Washington, DC. The winners and their innovative technologies are: Algenol in Fort Myers, Florida, is being recognized for developing a blue-green algae to produce ethanol and other fuels. The algae uses CO2 from air or industrial emitters with sunlight and saltwater to create fuel while dramatically reducing the carbon footprint, costs and water usage, with no reliance on food crops as feedstocks. This is a win-win for the company, the public, and the environment. It has the potential to revolutionize this industry and reduce the carbon footprint of fuel production. Hybrid Coating Technologies/Nanotech Industries of Daly City, California, is being recognized for developing a safer, plant-based polyurethane for use on floors, furniture and in foam insulation. The technology eliminates the use of isocyanates, the number one cause of workplace asthma. This is already in production, is reducing VOC’s and costs, and is safer for people and the environment. LanzaTech in Skokie, Illinois, is being recognized for the development of a process that uses waste gas to produce fuels and chemicals, reducing companies’ carbon footprint. LanzaTech has partnered with Global Fortune 500 Companies and others to use this technology, including facilities that can each produce 100,000 gallons per year of ethanol, and a number of chemical ingredients for the manufacture of plastics. This technology is already a proven winner and has enormous potential for American industry. SOLTEX (Synthetic Oils and Lubricants of Texas) in Houston, Texas, is being recognized for developing a new chemical reaction process that eliminates the use of water and reduces hazardous chemicals in the production of additives for lubricants and gasoline. If widely used, this technology has the potential to eliminate millions of gallons of wastewater per year and reduce the use of a hazardous chemical by 50 percent. Renmatix in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, is being recognized for developing a process using supercritical water to more cost effectively break down plant material into sugars used as building blocks for renewable chemicals and fuels. This innovative low-cost process could result in a sizeable increase in the production of plant-based chemicals and fuels, and reduce the dependence on petroleum fuels. Professor Eugene Chen of Colorado State University is being recognized for developing a process that uses plant-based materials in the production of renewable chemicals and liquid fuels. This new technology is waste-free and metal-free. It offers significant potential for the production of renewable chemicals, fuels, and bioplastics that can be used in a wide range of safer industrial and consumer products. During the 20 years of the program, EPA has received more than 1500 nominations and presented awards to 104 technologies. Winning technologies are responsible for annually reducing the use or generation of more than 826 million pounds of hazardous chemicals, saving 21 billion gallons of water, and eliminating 7.8 billion pounds of carbon dioxide equivalent releases to air. An independent panel of technical experts convened by the American Chemical Society Green Chemistry Institute formally judged the 2015 submissions from among scores of nominated technologies and made recommendations to EPA for the 2015 winners. The 2015 awards event was held in conjunction with the 2015 Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference. Please help us spread the word about the 2015 winners and their innovative technologies within your own communication channels and through social media and web. Feel free to share this email with your contacts and repost the social media content. * Share our Twitter post. [ https://twitter.com/EPA/status/620652522844368896 ] * 2015 Presidential Green Chemistry Award winners and share the blog. [ https://blog.epa.gov/blog/2015/07/american-innovators/ ] For more information on this year’s winners and those from the last two decades, visit http://www2.epa.gov/green-chemistry Once again, the NanoBCA is proud to congratulate our colleagues in the nanotechnology community.
Mimicking the texture found on the highly antireflective surfaces of the compound eyes of moths, we use block copolymer self assembly to produce precise and tunable nanotextured designs in the range of ~20 nm across macroscopic silicon solar cells. This nanoscale texturing imparts broadband antireflection properties and significantly enhances performance compared with typical antireflection coatings. Proper design of an antireflection coating involves managing the refractive index mismatch at an abrupt optical interface. The most straightforward approach introduces a single layer of an intermediate optical index atop of a surface to create a system that engenders destructive interference in reflected light. This usually provides full antireflection at only a single wavelength. Increasingly broadband coverage, for application in transparent window coatings, military camouflage, or solar cells, is possible using multilayered thin-film schemes. An alternative to thin-film coating strategies, nanoscale patterns applied to the surface of a material, can create an effective medium between the substrate and air. Such structures provide broadband antireflection over a wide range of incident light angles when nanoscale, sub-wavelength textures are sufficiently tall and closely spaced. In this work, we enhance the broadband antireflection properties of a nanofabricated moth eye structure through simultaneous control of both the geometry and optical properties, using block copolymer self assembly to design nanotextures that are sufficiently small to take advantage of a beneficial material surface layer that is only a few nanometers thick.
Researchers have developed an easy and microelectronics-compatible method to grow graphene and have successfully synthesized wafer-scale (four inches in diameter), high-quality, multi-layer graphene on silicon substrates. The method is based on an ion implantation technique, a process in which ions are accelerated under an electrical field and smashed into a semiconductor.
The Office of Naval Research has awarded engineers an $800,000 grant to develop narrow strips of graphene called nanoribbons that may someday revolutionize how power is controlled in ships, smartphones and other electronic devices.
Scientists used Mira to identify and improve a new mechanism for eliminating friction, which fed into the development of a hybrid material that exhibited superlubricity at the macroscale for the first time.
Nano-C, Inc. received clearance from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to manufacture and sell Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes (SWCNT) for a wide range of applications.
Industrial Nanotech, Inc. Introduces Ultra Thin High Performance Thermal Insulation Film for Cooling Personal Electronic Devices
Industrial Nanotech, Inc. (OTC PINK: INTK), a global leader in nanotechnology based energy saving solutions, today announced that the Company has developed an ultra thin high performance thermal insul...
Scientists have developed a first-of-its-kind method of creating a class of nanowires that one day could have applications in areas ranging from consumer electronics to solar panels.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> Image: Stephan Hofmann Self-assembling nanowires could give them a role in touch-screen displays, smoke detectors, and other applications. Now researchers at the University of Cambridge in the UK in collaboration with IBM have developed a self-assembly process for nanowires that makes it possible to embed quantum dots within them, expanding their range of potential applications. “The key to building functional nanoscale devices is to control materials and their interfaces at the atomic level,” said Stephan Hofmann of the University of Cambridge and one of the paper’s senior authors, in a press release. “We’ve developed a method of engineering inclusions of different materials so that we can make complex structures in a very precise way.” The new self-assembly technique, which is described in the journal Nature Materials , is based on the typical process for producing nanowires: vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) synthesis. VLS offers a fast way for producing nanowires based on chemical vapor deposition. In VLS, chemical vapors disolve into a droplet of liquid catalyst. The chemicals crystalize at the base of the droplet, forming the nanowire, which pushes the catalyst up as it grows. Over the years, VLS has developed into a highly controlled process in which every detail of the nanowires from its size to its crystal structure can be precisely controlled. The Cambridge researchers were able to build upon the VLS technique by using the catalyst droplet as a “mixing bowl” to add materials that lead to new growth phases. These new phases take the shape of faceted nanocrystals, or quantum dots. “The technique allows two different materials to be incorporated into the same nanowire, even if the lattice structures of the two crystals don’t perfectly match,” said Hofmann. “It’s a flexible platform that can be used for different technologies.” The inclusion of quantum dots in the nanowires would seem to indicate potential optoelectronic applications, for which the nanocrystals are well known. For example, the researchers anticipate that these new nanowires could find use in semiconductor lasers and other light emitters.
Since the first 'Scotch tape' method - i.e. mechanical peeling - of making graphene was reported in 2004, researchers have come up with a variety of techniques for producing graphene. Since simply using the as-produced graphene flakes is not good enough for use in sophisticated applications, intricate patterning processes are essential for the development of the required graphene structures for use in nanoelectronic and optical devices. Usinf a novel method, researchers have now successfully grown graphene from neat polystyrene regions.
Aculon, Inc., a proven nanocoating supplier to the electronics industry, announces the launch of their NanoProof Series of PCB water & oil protection products.
An international team led by Princeton University scientists has discovered Weyl fermions, an elusive massless particle theorized 85 years ago. The particle could give rise to faster and more efficien...
A new multispectral microscope, one capable of processing nearly 17 billion pixels representing 13 individual color channels in a single image, has been successfully demonstrated by a team of research...
A solar cell that produces fuel rather than electricity. Researchers today present a very promising prototype.
II‐VI Incorporated ‐ II‐VI Advanced Materials, a world leading supplier of single crystal SiC (silicon carbide) substrates and CVD‐grown polycrystalline diamond materials,...
CVD Equipment Corporation, a leading provider of standard and custom chemical vapor deposition systems, today announced that it has received in excess of $13 Million in new orders during the quarter...
New research shows it is possible to test a candidate material quickly and directly, using off-the-shelf laser technology. The method bypasses the costly, time-consuming step of constructing a prototype solar cell for each material to be evaluated.
The Sun can be a better chemist, thanks to zinc oxide nanorod arrays grown on a graphene substrate and 'decorated' with dots of cadmium sulphide. In the presence of solar radiation, this combination of zero and one-dimensional semiconductor structures with two-dimensional graphene is a great catalyst for many chemical reactions.