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Polarized light pushes graphene plasmons

Nanotechweb - February 26, 2015 - 8:51am
New result could not only be important for studying how charge carriers move in graphene but could also help build graphene-based elements for the rapidly developing field of metamaterials.
Categories: Nanotechnology News

New Paper-like Material Could Boost Electric Vehicle Batteries

National Nanomanufacturing Network - February 26, 2015 - 7:55am
Researchers create silicon nanofibers 100 times thinner than human hair for potential applications in batteries for electric cars and personal electronicsResearchers at the University of California, Riverside’s Bourns College of Engineering (http://www.engr.ucr.edu/) have developed a novel paper-like material for lithium-ion batteries. It has the potential to boost by several times the specific energy, or amount of energy that can be delivered per unit weight of the battery. This paper-like material is composed of sponge-like silicon nanofibers more than 100 times thinner than human hair. It could be used in batteries for electric vehicles and personal electronics. The findings were just published in a paper, “Mihri Ozkan (http://www.ee.ucr.edu/%7Emihrilab/), a professor of electrical and computer engineering, Cengiz S. Ozkan (http://www.engr.ucr.edu/%7Ecengizlab/), a professor of mechanical engineering, and six of their graduate students: Zach Favors, Hamed Hosseini Bay, Zafer Mutlu, Kazi Ahmed, Robert Ionescu and Rachel Ye. The nanofibers were produced using a technique known as electrospinning, whereby 20,000 to 40,000 volts are applied between a rotating drum and a nozzle, which emits a solution composed mainly of tetraethyl orthosilicate (TEOS), a chemical compound frequently used in the semiconductor industry. The nanofibers are then exposed to magnesium vapor to produce the sponge-like silicon fiber structure. Conventionally produced lithium-ion battery anodes are made using copper foil coated with a mixture of graphite, a conductive additive, and a polymer binder. But, because the performance of graphite has been nearly tapped out, researchers are experimenting with other materials, such as silicon, which has a specific capacity, or electrical charge per unit weight of the battery, nearly 10 times higher than graphite. The problem with silicon is that is suffers from significant volume expansion, which can quickly degrade the battery. The silicon nanofiber structure created in the Ozkan’s labs circumvents this issue and allows the battery to be cycled hundreds of times without significant degradation. “Eliminating the need for metal current collectors and inactive polymer binders while switching to an energy dense material such as silicon will significantly boost the range capabilities of electric vehicles,” Favors said. This technology also solves a problem that has plagued free-standing, or binderless, electrodes for years: scalability. Free-standing materials grown using chemical vapor deposition, such as carbon nanotubes or silicon nanowires, can only be produced in very small quantities (micrograms). However, Favors was able to produce several grams of silicon nanofibers at a time even at the lab scale. The researchers’ future work involves implementing the silicon nanofibers into a pouch cell format lithium-ion battery, which is a larger scale battery format that can be used in EVs and portable electronics.Source: UCR Today (http://ucrtoday.ucr.edu/27263)

Flexible Nanosensors for Wearable Devices

National Nanomanufacturing Network - February 26, 2015 - 7:44am
Researchers from UPM have developed a manufacturing method of aluminum optical nanosensors on versatile substrates that can be used for wearable devices and smart labels. A new method developed at the Institute of Optoelectronics Systems and Microtechnology (http://www.isom.upm.es/eng/index.php) (ISOM) from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (http://www.upm.es/internacional) (UPM) will enable the fabrication of optical nanosensors capable of sticking on uneven surfaces and biological surfaces like human skin. This result can boost the use of wearable devices to monitor parameters such as temperature, breath and heart pressure. Besides, it is a low cost technology since they use materials like standard polycarbonate compact disks, aluminum films and adhesive tapes that would facilitate its implementation on the market.Researchers from Semiconductor Devices Group (http://www.upm.es/observatorio/vi/index.jsp?pageac=grupo.jsp idGrupo=260) of ISOM from UPM have not only designed a manufacturing method of optical nanosensors over a regular adhesive tape but also have shown their potential applications. These flexible nanosensors enable us to measure refractive index variations of the surrounding medium and this can be used to detect chemical substances. Besides, they display iridescent colors that can vary according to the viewing and illumination angle, this property facilitates the detection of position variations and surface topography to where they are stuck at a glance. Nanosensors consist of dimensional nanohole arrays (250 nm) which are drilled into an aluminum layer (100 nm thick). In order to cause sensitivity to the surrounding mediums and iridescence effects, these nanostructures confine and disperse light according to the will of the engineer who designs them. The creation method for flexible nanosensors consists, firstly, on manufacturing sensors over a compact disc (CDs) of traditional polycarbonate, and secondly, transferring these sensors to adhesive Scotch tapes by a simple stick-and-peel procedure. This way, the nanosensors go from the CD surface to the adhesive tape (flexible substrate). The stick-and-peel process can be watched at: http://1drv.ms/1Jgf6Hd (http://1drv.ms/1Jgf6Hd) This new technology uses low cost materials such as polycarbonate CDs, aluminum, and regular adhesive tapes. The usage of noble metals to develop these types of sensors is common, but it is difficult mass production due to the high cost. Aluminum is 25,000 times cheaper than gold and has excellent electrical and optical properties. Besides, CD surfaces provide adherence to aluminum that is strong enough to manufacture the sensors over the CDs and weak enough to be transferred to the adhesive tape. This research is led by Dr. Carlos Angulos Barrios, a researcher from ISOM and Professor at the Department of Photonics Technology and Bioengineering (http://www.tfo.upm.es/) (TFB) of the School of Telecommunications Engineering (http://www.etsit.upm.es/index.php/en/), and also led by Víctor Canalejas Tejero, a PhD student of ISOM. The results were published in the Nanoscale journal ("Compact discs as versatile cost-effective substratesfor releasable nanopatterned aluminium films" (http://pubs.rsc.org/en/Content/ArticleLanding/2015/NR/C4NR06271J#!divAbstract) ).Source: Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (http://www.upm.es/internacional/UPM/UPM_Channel/News/03db4bb9a70cb410VgnVCM10000009c7648aRCRD)

NanoBCA Interview with Dr. Michael A. Meador, Director, NNCO

National Nanomanufacturing Network - February 26, 2015 - 7:32am
NanoBCA was fortunate to engage in a conversation with Dr. Michael A. Meador, the recently appointed Director of the National Nanotechnology Coordination Office (“NNCO”) on February 10, 2015. Dr. Meador, who is technically on loan from NASA to NNCO for this assignment, has a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Michigan State University where he began his career thinking about matter at the molecular scale. While at NASA, Dr. Meador’s efforts included development of “game-changing” technologies from the TRL 4 to TRL 6 levels with a focus on specific technologies such as carbon nanotube based structural composites, nano-based sensors for chemical and biotech detection, among others. The following excerpt, from the NNCO website, outlines Dr. Meador’s impressive credentials and background with regard to nanotechnology. Dr. Meador, chair of NASA’s Nanotechnology Roadmap Team, was instrumental in developing the NASA-wide Nanotechnology Project, and has been responsible for project planning and advocacy, overseeing technical progress, developing external partnerships to advance and transfer technology, coordinating with other nanotechnology related activities within NASA, and interacting with program and senior agency management. He has also played a key role in representing NASA in the NNI’s interagency activities, including co-chairing its Nanomanufacturing, Industry Liaison, and Innovation Working Group. During his long career at NASA, Dr. Meador has held a series of positions with increasing responsibility, including over twenty years as Chief of the Polymers Branch of the Materials Division at NASA Glenn Research Center, where he expanded the research portfolio of the branch from research in high-temperature stable polymers and composites for aircraft engines to include work in battery electrolytes, fuel cell membranes, and nonlinear optical and sensor materials. He also initiated the first nanotechnology program at NASA Glenn. Dr. Meador has been recognized as the NASA Glenn Small Disadvantaged Business Program Technical Advocate of the Year and NASA Small Business Program Technical Personnel of the Year. He has also received the NASA Equal Opportunity Employment Medal for his work to increase the involvement of faculty and students from minority serving institutions in NASA materials research, and last month was awarded the NASA Exceptional Service Medal for leading NASA's Nanotechnology R D activities and representing the agency as a proactive member of the NNI. NanoBCA How long have you been a devotee of the science of nanotechnology? Dr. Meador Dating back to my graduate studies, I have long been aware of the great potential of working with matter at the molecular level. I carried this interest with me to NASA where, as Chief of the Polymers Branch at the Glenn Research Center, I launched one of the first research efforts with NASA focused on the development of nanomaterials technologies. Around 1999 or so, NASA started a long-term relationship with Dr. Richard Smalley of Rice University to focus on scaling up his HiPCO process to produce single wall carbon nanotubes so that we could have a sufficient quantity to evaluate as an additive for polymers. We were fortunate to be a part of that activity. The scale up approach developed under this activity led to Carbon Nanotechnologies Inc. So, I guess you can say that I have been involved with the science of nanotechnology for over 30 years. NanoBCA From a career perspective, what led you to become the Director at NNCO? Dr. Meador Over the course of my career, I have been involved in all aspects of nanotech research and development at a variety of levels within NASA from managing activities in my branch to more recently managing a NASA-wide project in nanotechnology. For the past four years I also served as NASA’s principal representative to the NSET, which gave me a broader perspective on nanotech R D at the Federal government level. It seemed like a very natural progression to aspire to a position like this at NNCO where I could give back, in a leadership role, and utilize my unique career experience with regards to nanotechnology. Personally, it is very exciting for me to be in a position to help push the NNI forward, especially now that it is at a crossroads in that it is coming out of a research and development focused effort to a more defined commercialization effort. NanoBCA The 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act was signed into law on December 3, 2003. What do you see as the major successes of this Act and what needs to be done going forward? Dr. Meador If not for National Nanotechnology Initiative (“NNI”), which preceded and was then reauthorized by the 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act, certain industries would not have been created, or at a minimum, would have been created at a much later date. That alone is a very significant accomplishment of the NNI. For instance, the quantum dot industry would not be where it is today if not for the NNI. As you know, Sony announced a new TV recently at the Consumer Electronics Show that will incorporate quantum dots produced by QD Vision, Inc. to enhance picture quality. QD Vision won the 2014 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award (http://www2.epa.gov/green-chemistry/presidential-green-chemistry-challenge-winners) from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which is the highest domestic honor in the field, recognizing chemical technologies that incorporate the principles of green chemistry into chemical design, manufacture, and use. So, it is clear that the quantum dot industry is making an important impact on our economy, and our environment, and it is an industry that is here to stay. Another example is the carbon nanotube sector, with companies like Nanocomp Technologies, Inc. that are producing materials that not only reduce weight but also greatly improve strength in all sorts of products. Moving forward, we are honing our focus on supporting and expanding success stories like these, particularly as they relate to the commercialization of nanotechnologies. To that end, Dr. Lisa Friedersdorf, NNCO Deputy Director, and I have plans to visit all NSET agencies to talk about their agency’s vision and the NNCO’s vision and to try to establish a plan to more effectively work together to achieve the collective goals of the NNI. We recently visited the NIST Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology, which is truly a world-class facility. This is yet another example of the success of the 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act and reflects the tangible return on investment from that piece of legislation. So, I think there are a number of examples where nanotechnologies have definitely established a presence in the marketplace, but there is much more that we can do to facilitate the commercialization of nanotechnologies. NanoBCA What is your plan to further impact commercialization? Dr. Meador Success will come from good communications and a focused effort to have NNI agencies work directly with industry to identify and address any roadblocks to commercialization. To that end, the NNCO has initiated a webinar series to highlight problems that industry is facing with regards to nanotech commercialization. This has proven to be a great communications vehicle to provide information, especially to small- and medium- sized business, on topics like insurance and regulations that could help them be more successful in their commercialization efforts. These webinars are scheduled to occur once every other month and are designed to be easily accessible to the broadest audience. NanoBCA One of the challenges that we see regularly at the NanoBCA, is to address the question of whether or not the over $20 billion, that was invested by the 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act, was worthwhile from a taxpayers’ perspective. Is this a question with which you are confronted? Dr. Meador Yes, this is a very important question that needs to be addressed loudly and clearly and provide a compelling justification for the past and continued investment in the NNI. Fortunately, I have benefitted from sitting on NSET through the critical years and have had a front row seat to witness the impact of this investment. As I mentioned before, there are tangible examples of the return on investment that can be seen in the establishment of new industries and new products which also, not insignificantly, mean new jobs. Also, there has been the establishment of critical new infrastructure, like the NIST Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology. However, it is critically important that the news of these returns be communicated clearly to all stakeholders, which includes the taxpayer, the media and the broader community beyond just those in industry and government who happen to be concerned with nanotechnology as a part of their daily function. That is the challenge that faces us today at NNCO. To address that challenge and to do a better job of communication, NNCO is taking action on several fronts, some of which are quite simple yet very effective. I have already mentioned our webinar series. We are also developing our YouTube channel and reaching out to stakeholders in government and industry to contribute video content that highlights their work. Our goal is to create a buzz about the great potential of nanotechnology commercialization. We are also reaching out directly to students and have established several contests that they can participate in to highlight their research projects (and even art projects). The winners of these contests will be duly recognized at national events. Which brings me to my final point on this matter, which is that we are expanding and improving the quality of our events across the board with the intent of improving the overall impact of our communications. NanoBCA Have you noticed, as we have at NanoBCA, that critics often have misconstrued the literal mandate of the 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act and perhaps not appreciated that the investment was designed to be on infrastructure and R D, as the name of the Act itself suggests? Dr. Meador Since the inception of the NNI, participating agencies within the Federal government have invested over $20B in nanotechnology related R D. So, I think it is a fair question to ask what the impact of that investment has been on the US economy and job creation. In fact, the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (“PCAST”) in its last two reviews, and the National Research Council (“NRC”), in its last review, have both called for a clear set of metrics to measure the success of the NNI. We are carefully considering how to develop these metrics by utilizing reports, such as the series of reports over the years by firms such as Lux Research on total revenues generated by nanotech products, as well as other studies which measure the impact of emerging technologies in other ways. Some of the inputs are not just on revenue data, but also on foundational impact such as the establishment of new technologies, sectors and even industries. The bottom line is that we all need to work together to create a better understanding, among the broadest audience possible, of the true impact of nanotechnologies on our society.

Chromium-Centered Cycloparaphenylene Rings as New Tools for Making Functionalized Nanocarbons

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
Professor Kenichiro Itami, Yasutomo Segawa and Natsumi Kubota of the JST-ERATO Itami Molecular Nanocarbon Project and the Institute of Transformative Bio-Molecules (ITbM), Nagoya University have synth...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Dendrite eraser: New electrolyte rids batteries of short-circuiting fibers: Solution enables a battery with both high efficiency & current density

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
Dendrites - the microscopic, pin-like fibers that cause rechargeable batteries to short circuit - create fire hazards and can limit the ability of batteries to power our smart phones and store renewab...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Cutting-edge technology optimizes cancer therapy with nanomedicine drug combinations: UCLA bioengineers develop platform that offers personalized approach to treatment

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
In greater than 90 percent of cases in which treatment for metastatic cancer fails, the reason is that the cancer is resistant to the drugs being used. To treat drug-resistant tumors, doctors typicall...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Optical nanoantennas set the stage for a NEMS lab-on-a-chip revolution

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
New research shows how cubic nanostructures made of insulating materials overcome the heating, fabrication and intensity challenges of nanonantenna technology, paving the way for NEMS applications in...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Detecting defects at the nanoscale will profit solar panel production: Researcher Mohamed Elrawemi develops new technologies for defects in thin films, vital in products as printed electronics and solar panels

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
RESEARCH at the University of Huddersfield will lead to major efficiency gains and cost savings in the manufacture of flexible solar panels. It has also resulted in an exceptional number of scholarly...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Together, nanotechnology and genetic interference may tackle 'untreatable' brain tumors: Tel Aviv University researchers' groundbreaking strategy stops brain tumor cell proliferation with targeted nanoparticles

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
There are no effective available treatments for sufferers of Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), the most aggressive and devastating form of brain tumor. The disease, always fatal, has a survival rate of o...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Ultra-thin nanowires can trap electron 'twisters' that disrupt superconductors

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
Superconductor materials are prized for their ability to carry an electric current without resistance, but this valuable trait can be crippled or lost when electrons swirl into tiny tornado-like forma...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Purification of Industrial Wastewater Using Visible-Light Sensitive Photocatalysts

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
Researchers from Iran and South Korea used nanotechnology to synthesize photocatalysts which have applications in various industries, including textile and pharmaceutics.
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Silicon Catalyst Announces Partnership With imec to Support Semiconductor Start-Ups

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
Silicon Catalyst today announced a partnership with imec to support semiconductor solution start-ups. While there are many incubators and accelerators for software and even some for hardware, Silicon...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

QD Vision Named Edison Award Finalist for Innovative Color IQ™ Quantum Dot Technology

Nanotech-Now - February 25, 2015 - 7:45am
QD Vision, Inc., the leading manufacturer of quantum dot solutions for display products, has been named a 2015 Award Finalist by the internationally renowned Edison Awards™. The distinguished awards,...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Gold tubes sizzle cancer cells

Nanotechweb - February 25, 2015 - 5:50am
Nanostructures could photothermally destroy tumours.
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Application of Biocompatible Polymers in Production of Nanodrugs

Nanotech-Now - February 23, 2015 - 7:45am
Iranian researchers succeeded in the production of a new drug delivery nano-system with applications in the treatment of cancer.
Categories: Nanotechnology News

KIT Increases Commitment in Asia: DAAD Funds Two New Projects: Strategic Partnerships with Chinese Universities and Communi-cation Technologies Network

Nanotech-Now - February 23, 2015 - 7:45am
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) has successfully acquired funding for two projects by the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service): Under "StratP_KIT - China", KIT plans to establish an interdi...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

EPSRC unveils world-leading SuperSTEM microscope that sees single atoms

Nanotech-Now - February 23, 2015 - 7:45am
A new super powerful electron microscope that can pinpoint the position of single atoms, and will help scientists push boundaries even further, in fields such as advanced materials, healthcare and pow...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Ocean Optics Names Winner of 2015 Young Investigator Award: Cash prize and grant awarded during SPIE BiOS/Photonics West 2015 conference

Nanotech-Now - February 23, 2015 - 7:45am
Ocean Optics, the industry leader in modular spectroscopy applications and products, recently named Amelie Heuer-Jungemann from the University of Southampton, UK the winner of the 2015 Ocean Optics Yo...
Categories: Nanotechnology News

Increasing Efficiency of Cooling Devices in Oil, Gas Industries

Nanotech-Now - February 23, 2015 - 7:45am
Iranian researches from Ferdowsi University of Mashhad in association with their counterparts from University of Malaya, Malaysia, studied the effect of presence of nanoparticles in increasing the eff...
Categories: Nanotechnology News