Superacids Are Good Medicine for Super Thin Semiconductors

Scientists demonstrated that powerful acids heal certain structural defects in synthetic films.

UNH Researchers Find Combination For Small Data Storage and Tinier Computers

It may sound like a futuristic device out of a spy novel, a computer the size of a pinhead, but according to new research from the University of New Hampshire, it might be a reality sooner than once thought. Researchers have discovered that using an easily made combination of materials might be the way to offer a more stable environment for smaller and safer data storage, ultimately leading to miniature computers.

Understanding a Cell's 'Doorbell'

A multi-institutional project to understand one of the major targets of human drug design has produced new insights into how structural communication works in a cell component called a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCRs), basically a "doorbell" structure that alerts the cell of important molecules nearby.

CMI Expands Research in Tech Metals as Rapid Growth in Electric Vehicles Drives Demand for Lithium, Cobalt

As increasing consumer interest in electric vehicles drives the demand for supplies of lithium and cobalt (ingredients in lithium-ion batteries), the Critical Materials Institute will begin new efforts this July to maximize the efficient processing, use, and recycling of those elements.

Tubular Science Improves Polymer Solar Cells

Novel engineered polymers assemble buckyballs into columns using a conventional coating process.

Biologically Inspired Membrane Purges Coal-Fired Smoke of Greenhouse Gases

A biologically inspired membrane intended to cleanse carbon dioxide almost completely from the smoke of coal-fired power plants has been developed by scientists at Sandia National Laboratories and the University of New Mexico.

Fast! Hard X-Ray Flash Breaks Speed Record

Lasting just a few hundred billionths of a billionth of a second, these bursts offer new tool to study chemistry and magnetism.

Tiny Distortions in Universe's Oldest Light Reveal Clearer Picture of Strands in Cosmic Web

Scientists have decoded faint distortions in the patterns of the universe's earliest light to map huge tubelike structures invisible to our eyes - known as filaments - that serve as superhighways for delivering matter to dense hubs such as galaxy clusters.

Diamond-Based Circuits Can Take the Heat for Advanced Applications

When power generators transfer electricity to homes, businesses and the power grid, they lose almost 10 percent of the generated power. To address this problem, scientists are researching new diamond semiconductor circuits to make power conversion systems more efficient. Researchers in Japan successfully fabricated a key circuit in power conversion systems using hydrogenated diamond. These circuits can be used in diamond-based electronic devices that are smaller, lighter and more efficient than silicon-based devices. They report their findings in this week's Applied Physics Letters.

ADMX Announces Breakthrough in Axion Dark Matter Detection Technology

This week, the Axion Dark Matter Experiment (ADMX) unveiled a new result, published in Physical Review Letters, that places it in a category of one: It is the world's first and only experiment to have achieved the necessary sensitivity to "hear" the telltale signs of dark matter axions. This technological breakthrough is the result of more than 30 years of research and development, with the latest piece of the puzzle coming in the form of a quantum-enabled device that allows ADMX to listen for axions more closely than any experiment ever built.

Removing the Brakes on Plant Oil Production

UPTON, NY--Scientists studying plant biochemistry at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have discovered new details about biomolecules that put the brakes on oil production. The findings suggest that disabling these biomolecular brakes could push oil production into high gear--a possible pathway toward generating abundant biofuels and plant-derived bioproducts.

Ultra-Powerful Batteries Made Safer, More Efficient

An international team of researchers is laying the foundation for more widespread use of lithium metal batteries. They developed a method to mitigate the formation of dendrites - crystal-like masses - that damage the batteries' performance.

Mirror, Mirror

The mirror-like physics of the superconductor-insulator transition operates exactly as expected. Scientists know this to be true following the observation of a remarkable phenomenon, the existence of which was predicted three decades ago but that had eluded experimental detection until now. The observation confirms that two fundamental quantum states, superconductivity and superinsulation, both arise in mirror-like images of each other.

Neutrino Experiment at Fermilab Delivers an Unprecedented Measurement

A group of scientists working on the MiniBooNE experiment at the Department of Energy's Fermilab has reported a breakthrough: They were able to identify exactly-known-energy muon neutrinos hitting the atoms at the heart of their particle detector. The result eliminates a major source of uncertainty when testing theoretical models of neutrino interactions and neutrino oscillations.

Tick, Tock on the 'Attoclock:' Tracking X-Ray Laser Pulses at Record Speeds

To catch chemistry in action, scientists at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory use the shortest possible flashes of X-ray light to create "molecular movies" that capture the motions of atoms in chemical reactions and reveal new details about the most fundamental processes in nature.

Tiny Bubbles

Bubbles are a linchpin of nuclear engineering, helping to explain the natural world, predict safety issues and improve the operation of the existing and next-generation nuclear fleet. High-performance supercomputers like Mira, located at Argonne, are helping researchers understand the phenomena of bubbling behavior more quickly.

Notre Dame Researchers Developing Renewable Energy Approach for Producing Ammonia

Ammonia is an essential component of fertilizers that support the world's food production needs, and currently production relies on non-renewable fossil fuels and has limited applications for only large, centralized chemical plants.

Trap, Contain and Convert

Injecting carbon dioxide deep underground into basalt flows holds promise as an abatement strategy. Now, new research by scientists at Washington University in St. Louis sheds light on exactly what happens underground during the process, illustrating precisely how effective the volcanic rock could be in trapping and converting CO2 emissions.

Story Tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, April 2018

Story tips: ORNL-led team cultivated a novel oral microbe in adults with periodontitis; ORNL partnered with FCA US and Nemak to develop a new cast aluminum alloy for engine cylinder heads, which could lead to better fuel efficiency; ORNL studies cast doubt on 40-year-old theory describing how plastic polymers behave during processing.

First Direct Observations of Methane's Increasing Greenhouse Effect at the Earth's Surface

Scientists have directly measured the increasing greenhouse effect of methane at the Earth's surface for the first time. A research team from the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) tracked a rise in the warming effect of methane - one of the most important greenhouse gases for the Earth's atmosphere - over a 10-year period at a DOE field observation site in northern Oklahoma.

Cooling Method Could Relieve Heat Woes in Data Centers, Electric Vehicles

Electronic systems, such as electric vehicles and large data centers, generate a lot of power, which creates tremendous heat. An engineer at Washington University in St. Louis has developed a unique evaporative cooling system using a membrane with microscopic pillars designed to remediate the heat, ultimately improving performance.

Making Rusty Polymers for Energy Storage

It's called a nanoflower, but if you could brush your cheek against its microscopic petals, you would find them cool, hard, and...rusty. Common rust forms the inner skeleton of these lovely and intricate nanostructures, while their outer layer is a kind of plastic. Researchers at Washington University in St. Louis have developed a straightforward way to make this type of conducting polymer with high surface area that is likely to be useful for energy transfer and storage applications.

What a Mesh

A team of scientists from across the U.S. has found a new way to create molecular interconnections that can give a certain class of materials exciting new properties, including improving their ability to catalyze chemical reactions or harvest energy from light.

Nanoscale Alloys From Elements Thought to Be Incapable of Mixing

A multi-institutional team of scientists describes a new technique that can meld ions from up to eight different elements to form what are known as high entropy alloyed nanoparticles.

Scientists Develop Sugar-Coated Nanosheets to Selectively Target Pathogens

A team led by Berkeley Lab scientists has developed a process for creating ultrathin, self-assembling sheets of synthetic materials that can function like designer flypaper in selectively binding with viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens. The new platform could potentially be used to inactivate or detect pathogens.