Quantcast

Latest National Institute of Standards and Technology Stories

2012-02-08 23:54:52

The great artist and inventor Leonardo da Vinci once said that "simplicity is the ultimate sophistication." National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) research engineer Javier Atencia certainly believes in the wisdom of what da Vinci preached; he has a reputation for creating novel microfluidic devices out of ordinary, inexpensive components. This time, he has combined a glass slide, plastic sheets and double-sided tape into a "diffusion-based gradient generator"–a tool to...

2012-02-08 23:53:48

You often hear about the Framers of the Constitution, but not so much the framers of the Magna Carta. They work for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Not the authors, of course; they've been dead 700 years. But a NIST engineering team, at the behest of the National Archives, designed and built a state-of-the-art encasement and transport cart to protect the Archive's prized copy of the 1297 Magna Carta. Their work–and the freshly conserved Magna...

2012-02-08 18:35:49

Filtering carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, from factory smokestacks is a necessary, but expensive part of many manufacturing processes. However, a collaborative research team from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Delaware has gathered new insight into the performance of a material called a zeolite that may stop carbon dioxide in its tracks far more efficiently than current scrubbers do. Zeolites are highly porous rocks–think of a sponge...

2012-02-08 18:34:44

A team from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Maryland has found an iron-based superconductor that operates at the highest known temperature for a material in its class. The discovery inches iron-based superconductors–valued for their ease of manufacturability and other properties–closer to being useful in many practical applications. Iron-based superconductors, which were discovered only about four years ago, are a hot research...

Scientists Confirm First 'Frequency Comb' To Probe Ultraviolet Wavelengths
2012-02-02 05:00:46

Physicists at JILA have created the first "frequency comb" in the extreme ultraviolet band of the spectrum, high-energy light less than 100 nanometers (nm) in wavelength. Laser-generated frequency combs are the most accurate method available for precisely measuring frequencies, or colors, of light. In reaching the new band of the spectrum, the JILA experiments demonstrated for the first time a very fine mini-comb-like structure within each subunit, or harmonic, of the larger comb, drastically...

2012-01-11 15:22:54

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), has developed two new Standard Reference Materials (SRMs) for measurements of human exposure to environmental toxins. Used as a sort of chemical ruler to check the accuracy of tests and analytic procedures, the new reference materials replace and improve older versions, adding measures for emerging environmental contaminants such as perchlorate, a chemical...

2012-01-11 15:21:51

With a random-looking spatter of paint specks, a pair of cameras and a whole lot of computer processing, engineer Mark Iadicola of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has been helping the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), in cooperation with the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), to assure the safety of hundreds of truss bridges across the United States. Iadicola has been testing the use of a thoroughly modern version of an...

2012-01-11 15:20:42

A new clinical Standard Reference Material (SRM) from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) will help health care professionals more accurately diagnose and treat cytomegalovirus (CMV), a common pathogen that is particularly dangerous for infants and persons with weakened immune systems. CMV is found in 50 to 80 percent of the population. It is a member of the herpes family of viruses that includes two herpes simplex viruses (the causes of cold sores and genital...

2012-01-11 15:19:31

Similar to the way pavement, softened by a hot sun, will slow down a car, graphene–a one-atom-thick sheet of carbon with wondrous properties–slows down an object sliding across its surface. But stack the sheets and graphene gets more slippery, say theorists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), who developed new software to quantify the material's friction. "I don't think anyone expects graphene to behave like a surface of a three-dimensional material,...


Word of the Day
negawatt
  • A unit of saved energy.
Coined by Amory Lovins, chairman of the Rocky Mountain Institute as a contraction of negative watt on the model of similar compounds like megawatt.