Power/Performance Bits: Nov. 5


Conductive yarn Researchers at Drexel University created an electrically conductive coating for yarn that withstands wearing, washing, and industrial textile manufacturing. Rather than using metallic fibers, the coating is made up of different sized flakes of the two-dimensional material MXene, which was applied to standard cellulose-based yarns. Titanium carbide MXene can be produced in f... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Oct. 9


Topological insulator waveguides Engineers at the University of Pennsylvania and Polytechnic University of Milan applied topological insulators to photonic chips to make reconfigurable waveguides. In topological insulators, charged particles can flow freely on the material's edges but can't pass through the interior. For photonics, topological insulators with edges that could be redefined m... » read more

System Bits: Oct. 9


Bringing plasmonic color to solid materials Researchers at the University of California, Riverside, used silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) to produce plasmonic color-switchable films for solid materials. This effect was previously achieved only in liquids. Rapid and reversible tuning of plasmonic color in solid films, a challenge until now, holds great promise for a number of applications,” sa... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Sept. 24


Textiles for energy storage Scientists at RMIT University developed a way to laser print waterproof textiles with graphene supercapacitors for embedded energy storage. The process takes three minutes to create a 10x10cm patch. The electronic textile is based on nylon coated with PDMS on one side for waterproofing. The other side was paint coated with graphene oxide and a binder to form thin... » read more

System Bits: Sept. 17


Quantum computing R&D in Germany IBM is teaming with the Fraunhofer Society for research and development of quantum computing technology, backed by the German government, which is providing €650 million (about $715.4 million) in funding over two years for the program. IBM has agreed to install a Q System One system at one of its facilities in Germany for the program. The system has 20... » read more

System Bits: Sept. 11


Everything’s faster in Texas The Frontera supercomputing system was formally unveiled last week at the Texas Advanced Computing Center. The system was deployed in June on the University of Texas at Austin campus. It is the fifth-fastest supercomputer in the world at present and the world's fastest academic supercomputer. Dell EMC and Intel collaborated on fitting out Frontera. Work beg... » read more

System Bits: Aug. 27


A ring of 18 carbon atoms Scientists at IBM Research – Zurich and Oxford University write about allotropes of carbon – the many versions of atomic carbon formations, such as diamonds and graphite. “Carbon, one of the most abundant elements in the universe, can exist in different forms - called allotropes - giving it completely different properties from color to shape to hardness. For... » read more

July’19 Startup Funding


During the month of July, 21 technology startups took in mega-rounds of $100 million or more. Those companies together received more than $7.5 billion. On the other end of the financing spectrum, dozens of startups got seed funding or a Series A round. The dollar amounts were much smaller. Still, they are the beating heart of entrepreneurship around the world. It also was a month when som... » read more

System Bits: July 23


Superconductivity seen in trilayer graphene Stanford University and University of California at Berkeley researchers discovered signs of superconductivity in stacking three-layer sheets of graphene, they report. “It’s definitely an exciting development,” says Cory Dean, a physicist at Columbia University. Dean notes that bilayer graphene superconducts only when the atomic lattices of ... » read more

Creating 2D Compounds


A 2D material, by definition, has no surface dangling bonds. A bulk material with plate-like structure, such as graphite, is composed of thin layers with a weakly bonded cleavage plane between. What this means is a monolayer of graphite will seek to satisfy its exposed dangling bonds by absorbing other materials. A monolayer of graphene, in contrast, is energetically complete without a secon... » read more

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