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Latest Nature Materials Stories

2013-02-07 09:58:02

Researcher and team are the first to measure all of the elastic properties of an intact spider's web, drawing a remarkable picture of the behavior of one of nature´s most intriguing structures. The work could lead to new “bio-inspired” materials that improve upon nature. As fibers go, there´s never been anything quite like spider silk. Stretch it. Bend it. Soak it. Dry it out. Spider silk holds up. It is five times stronger than steel and can expand nearly a third...

2013-01-14 11:32:07

Writing in Nature Materials, the scientists, working with colleagues from Aix-Marseille University, have created a device which potentially can see one molecule though a simple optical system and can analyze its components within minutes. This uses plasmonics — the study of vibrations of electrons in different materials. The breakthrough could allow for rapid and more accurate drug testing for professional athletes as it could detect the presence of even trace amounts of a substance....

2012-12-03 20:58:50

Potential for optoelectronics, solar cells, valleytronics and more When the dry lubricant, molybdenum disulfide, is stripped down to a single layer of atoms, a tightly bound quasi-particle comprised of two electrons and a hole forms with unique spin and valley properties, researchers from Case Western Reserve University and colleagues discovered. These charged quasi-particles, called negative trions, can be manipulated to change the light absorbed and emitted from this two-dimensional...

2012-10-24 12:03:55

University of California, Davis, researchers for the first time have looked inside gallium manganese arsenide, a type of material known as a "dilute magnetic semiconductor" that could open up an entirely new class of faster, smaller devices based on an emerging field known as “spintronics.” Materials of this type might be used to read and write digital information not by using the electron´s charge, as is the case with today´s electronic devices, but by using its...

2012-08-27 19:36:41

'Cyborg' tissues could merge bioengineering with electronics for drug development, implantable therapeutics A multi-institutional research team has developed a method for embedding networks of biocompatible nanoscale wires within engineered tissues. These networks–which mark the first time that electronics and tissue have been truly merged in 3D–allow direct tissue sensing and potentially stimulation, a potential boon for development of engineered tissues that incorporate...

2012-08-27 12:21:27

Harvard scientists have, for the first, time created a type of "cyborg" tissue by embedding a three-dimensional network of functional, bio-compatible nanoscale wires into engineered human tissues. As described in a paper published August 26 in Nature Materials, a multi-institutional research team led by Charles M. Lieber, the Mark Hyman, Jr. Professor of Chemistry at Harvard and Daniel Kohane, a Harvard Medical School professor in the Department of Anesthesia at Children's Hospital Boston...

2012-07-30 12:58:28

Sandwiching individual graphene sheets between insulating layers in order to produce electrical devices with unique new properties, the method could open up a new dimension of physics research. Writing in Nature Materials, the scientists show that a new side-view imaging technique can be used to visualize the individual atomic layers of graphene within the devices they have built. They found that the structures were almost perfect even when more than 10 different layers were used to build...

Avoiding Traps In Plastic Electronics
2012-07-30 09:01:59

Plastic electronics hold the promise of cheap, mass-produced devices. But plastic semiconductors have an important flaw: the electronic current is influenced by "charge traps" in the material. These traps, which have a negative impact on plastic light-emitting diodes and solar cells, are poorly understood. However, a new study by a team of researchers from the University of Groningen and the Georgia Institute of Technology reveals a common mechanism underlying these traps and provides a...

2012-07-16 10:14:45

Cancers are notorious for secreting chemicals that confuse the immune system and thwarting biological defenses. To counter that effect, some cancer treatments try to neutralize the cancer's chemical arsenal and boost a patient's immune response--though attempts to do both at the same time are rarely successful. Now, researchers have developed a novel system to simultaneously deliver a sustained dose of both an immune-system booster and a chemical to counter the cancer's secretions,...

2012-07-09 10:14:07

Successful imaging of individual atoms and associated electric fields in ferroelectrics could lead the way to a new era of advanced electronics As scientists learn to manipulate little-understood nanoscale materials, they are laying the foundation for a future of more compact, efficient, and innovative devices. In research to be published online July 8 in the journal Nature Materials, scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National...


Word of the Day
attercop
  • A spider.
  • Figuratively, a peevish, testy, ill-natured person.
'Attercop' comes from the Old English 'atorcoppe,' where 'atter' means 'poison, venom' and‎ 'cop' means 'spider.' 'Coppa' is a derivative of 'cop,' top, summit, round head, or 'copp,' cup, vessel, which refers to 'the supposed venomous properties of spiders,' says the OED. 'Copp' is still found in the word 'cobweb.'
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