Manufacturing Bits: April 30


Single-atom catalysts A group of researchers have captured the behavior of a single-atom catalyst, a move that could one day help design more efficient catalysts in systems. A catalyst is a substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction. In vehicles, for example, platinum is used as a catalyst, which speeds up chemical reactions and cleans exhaust gases. Besides platinum, the indu... » read more

System Bits: April 30


Future batteries could use a graphene sponge Researchers at Sweden’s Chalmers University of Technology devised a porous, sponge-like aerogel, made of reduced-graphene oxide, to serve as a freestanding electrode in the battery cell. This utilization has the potential to advance lithium sulfur batteries, which are said to possess a theoretical energy density about five times greater than lithi... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Dec. 26


2nm memristors Researchers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Brookhaven National Laboratory built memristor crossbar arrays with a 2nm feature size and a single-layer density up to 4.5 terabits per square inch. The team says the arrays were built with foundry-compatible fabrication technologies. "This work will lead to high-density memristor arrays with low power consumption fo... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: July 3


Graphene foam devices Scientists at Rice University developed a method for building conductive, three-dimensional objects out of graphene foam, which they say could offer new possibilities for energy storage and flexible electronic sensor applications. The same lab initially created laser-induced graphene, or LIG, in 2014. The process involves heating inexpensive polyimide plastic sheets wi... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Dec. 19


Superconducting magnet record The National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (MagLab) has broken another world record for magnets. With a superconducting magnet, MagLab reached a magnetic field of 32 teslas. This is a third stronger than the previous record and more than 3,000 times stronger than a refrigerator magnet, according to MagLab. Tesla, or T, is the measurement of magnetic field ... » read more

System Bits: Oct. 17


Piezoelectric, ingestible sensors With an aim to help doctors diagnose gastrointestinal disorders that slow down the passage of food through the digestive tract, MIT and Brigham and Women’s Hospital researchers have built a flexible sensor that can be rolled up and swallowed. Once ingested, the sensor adheres to the stomach wall or intestinal lining, where it can measure the rhythmic con... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: May 23


Pushing optical metrology The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has developed a new way to determine crystal types using optical metrology techniques. Using an optical-based technique called absorption spectroscopy, researchers have detected tiny nanocrystals down to about 2nm resolutions. Absorption spectroscopy measures the absorption of radiation. It is measured as a function o... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: May 2


Patterning 1nm features The Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN) at the Brookhaven National Laboratory has patterned features down to 1nm using a direct-write lithography technique. Using a scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM), researchers have patterned thin films of the polymer poly(methyl methacrylate), or PMMA, down to 1nm with a spacing between features at 11nm. Re... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Oct. 4


Solar battery Chemists at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia integrated solar cells with a large-capacity battery in a single device that eliminates the usual intermediate step of making electricity and, instead, transfers the energy directly to the battery's electrolyte. The team used a redox flow battery, or R... » read more

System Bits: July 29


Cooper Pairs Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Cornell University and Brookhaven National Laboratory say they have unlocked what they’re calling quantum glue—the underlying basis for creating energy conduits without current loss. In superconductors, electrical resistance vanishes below a critical temperature and conduction electrons form ordered pairs, known as Coop... » read more