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Archive for the ‘nanotechnology’ category

Jan 27, 2021

Tiny bio-inspired swarm robots for targeted medical interventions

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, nanotechnology, robotics/AI

Micro-sized robots could bring a new wave of innovation in the medical field by allowing doctors to access specific regions inside the human body without the need for highly invasive procedures. Among other things, these tiny robots could be used to carry drugs, genes or other substances to specific sites inside the body, opening up new possibilities for treating different medical conditions.

Researchers at ETH Zurich and Helmholtz Institute Erlangen–Nürnberg for Renewable Energy have recently developed micro and nano-sized robots inspired by biological micro-swimmers (e.g., bacteria or spermatozoa). These , presented in a paper published in Nature Machine Intelligence, are capable of upstream motility, which essentially means that they can autonomously move in the opposite direction to that in which a fluid (e.g., blood) flows. This makes them particularly promising for intervening inside the .

“We believe that the ideas discussed in our multidisciplinary study can transform many aspects of medicine by enabling tasks such as targeted and precise delivery of drugs or genes, as well as facilitating non-invasive surgeries,” Daniel Ahmed, lead author of the recent paper, told TechXplore.

Jan 26, 2021

Researchers construct molecular nanofibers that are stronger than steel

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, chemistry, nanotechnology

Self-assembly is ubiquitous in the natural world, serving as a route to form organized structures in every living organism. This phenomenon can be seen, for instance, when two strands of DNA—without any external prodding or guidance—join to form a double helix, or when large numbers of molecules combine to create membranes or other vital cellular structures. Everything goes to its rightful place without an unseen builder having to put all the pieces together, one at a time.

For the past couple of decades, scientists and engineers have been following nature’s lead, designing molecules that assemble themselves in , with the goal of making nanostructures, primarily for such as drug delivery or tissue engineering. “These small-molecule-based materials tend to degrade rather quickly,” explains Julia Ortony, assistant professor in MIT’s Department of Materials Science and Engineering (DMSE), “and they’re chemically unstable, too. The whole structure falls apart when you remove the water, particularly when any kind of external force is applied.”

She and her team, however, have designed a new class of small molecules that spontaneously assemble into nanoribbons with unprecedented strength, retaining their structure outside of water. The results of this multi-year effort, which could inspire a broad range of applications, were described on Jan. 21 in Nature Nanotechnology by Ortony and coauthors.

Jan 26, 2021

Discovery makes the invisible visible

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, nanotechnology

Australian scientists have discovered a new way to analyze microscopic cells, tissues and other transparent specimens, through the improvement of an almost 100-year-old imaging technique.

La Trobe University researchers have led a four-year collaboration to make “the invisible visible” by using custom-designed nanomaterials to enhance the sensitivity of , an commonly used by scientists to study biological specimens.

The discovery, detailed in Nature Photonics, will benefit a broad range of researchers and has the potential to advance research into the understanding and detection of disease.

Jan 25, 2021

Physicists succeed in filming phase transition with extremely high spatial and temporal resolution

Posted by in categories: chemistry, nanotechnology, particle physics

Laser beams can be used to change the properties of materials in an extremely precise way. This principle is already widely used in technologies such as rewritable DVDs. However, the underlying processes generally take place at such unimaginably fast speeds and at such a small scale that they have so far eluded direct observation. Researchers at the University of Göttingen and the Max Planck Institute (MPI) for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen have now managed to film, for the first time, the laser transformation of a crystal structure with nanometre resolution and in slow motion in an electron microscope. The results have been published in the journal Science.

The team, which includes Thomas Danz and Professor Claus Ropers, took advantage of an unusual property of a material made up of atomically thin layers of sulfur and tantalum atoms. At , its is distorted into tiny wavelike structures—a “charge-density wave” is formed. At higher temperatures, a phase transition occurs in which the original microscopic waves suddenly disappear. The electrical conductivity also changes drastically, an interesting effect for nano-electronics.

In their experiments, the researchers induced this phase transition with short laser pulses and recorded a film of the charge-density wave reaction. “What we observe is the rapid formation and growth of tiny regions where the material was switched to the next phase,” explains first author Thomas Danz from Göttingen University. “The ultrafast transmission developed in Göttingen offers the highest time resolution for such imaging in the world today.” The special feature of the experiment lies in a newly developed imaging technique, which is particularly sensitive to the specific changes observed in this phase transition. The Göttingen physicists use it to take images that are composed exclusively of electrons that have been scattered by the crystal’s waviness.

Jan 25, 2021

Slowing Ageing — Joao Pedro Magalhaes- Prof University of Liverpool & Founder Magellan Science Ltd

Posted by in categories: engineering, genetics, life extension, nanotechnology, science, transhumanism

Forever we have held a view that AGING, DISEASE & DEATH is an un-alterable eventuality, those who dared question were ostracised for playing God.

If you choose to look deeper you will surely be amazed. Bowhead whales live for over 200 yrs “Turriptosis Dohnri” is a Jellyfish that lives forever. Can these #genetics traits be replicated in humans? Could the removal of #senescence #cells that accelerates aging be the answer Is it even possible to control or reverse aging? Can we grow old healthily? 150000 die every day & over 100000 of them are caused by aging.

Continue reading “Slowing Ageing — Joao Pedro Magalhaes- Prof University of Liverpool & Founder Magellan Science Ltd” »

Jan 25, 2021

3D-Printed Nanosatellite Thruster Emits Pure Ions for Propulsion

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, satellites

Study is first demonstration of a fully 3D-printed thruster using pure ion emission for propulsion.

A 3D-printed thruster that emits a stream of pure ions could be a low-cost, extremely efficient propulsion source for miniature satellites.

The nanosatellite thruster created by MIT researchers is the first of its kind to be entirely additively manufactured, using a combination of 3D printing and hydrothermal growth of zinc oxide nanowires. It is also the first thruster of this type to produce pure ions from the ionic liquids used to generate propulsion.

Jan 24, 2021

New technique builds super-hard metals from nanoparticles

Posted by in category: nanotechnology

Metallurgists have all kinds of ways to make a chunk of metal harder. They can bend it, twist it, run it between two rollers or pound it with a hammer. These methods work by breaking up the metal’s grain structure—the microscopic crystalline domains that form a bulk piece of metal. Smaller grains make for harder metals.

Now, a group of Brown University researchers has found a way to customize metallic grain structures from the bottom up. In a paper published in the journal Chem, the researchers show a method for smashing individual nanoclusters together to form solid macro-scale hunks of solid metal. Mechanical testing of the metals manufactured using the technique showed that they were up to four times harder than naturally occurring metal structures.

“Hammering and other hardening methods are all top-down ways of altering , and it’s very hard to control the you end up with,” said Ou Chen, an assistant professor of chemistry at Brown and corresponding author of the new research. “What we’ve done is create nanoparticle building blocks that fuse together when you squeeze them. This way we can have uniform grain sizes that can be precisely tuned for enhanced properties.”

Jan 21, 2021

Researchers develop new graphene nanochannel water filters

Posted by in categories: materials, nanotechnology

When sheets of two-dimensional nanomaterials like graphene are stacked on top of each other, tiny gaps form between the sheets that have a wide variety of potential uses. In research published in the journal Nature Communications, a team of Brown University researchers has found a way to orient those gaps, called nanochannels, in a way that makes them more useful for filtering water and other liquids of nanoscale contaminants.

“In the last decade, a whole field has sprung up to study these spaces that form between 2-D nanomaterials,” said Robert Hurt, a professor in Brown’s School of Engineering and coauthor of the research. “You can grow things in there, you can store things in there, and there’s this emerging field of nanofluidics where you’re using those channels to filter out some molecules while letting others go through.”

There’s a problem, however, with using these nanochannels for filtration, and it has to do with the way those channels are oriented. Like a notebook made from stacked sheets of paper, graphene stacks are thin in the vertical direction compared to their horizontal length and width. That means that the channels between the sheets are likewise oriented horizontally. That’s not ideal for filtration, because liquid has to travel a relatively long way to get from one end of a to the other. It would be better if the channels were perpendicular to the orientation of the sheets. In that case, liquid would only need to traverse the relatively thin vertical height of the stack rather than the much longer length and width.

Jan 21, 2021

Israeli-made mask eliminates over 99% of coronavirus, lab tests suggest

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, nanotechnology, transportation

The SonoMask displayed an ability to neutralize the novel coronavirus at an effectiveness of 99.34% within trials performed by the ATCCR Testing laboratory in China, Ramat Gan-based Israeli fabric maker and developer Sonovia announced on Saturday. Sonovia’s reusable anti-viral masks are coated in zinc oxide nanoparticles that destroy bacteria, fungi and viruses, which it says can help stop the spread of the coronavirus. Results from the most recent round of testing showed that the mask has the ability to neutralize fallen traces of SARS-COV-2 within 30 minutes after making contact with the fabric. The SonoMask was also proven to maintain its protective properties throughout 55 wash cycles.” Following this outstanding result – the product of several months of dedicated anti-viral sonochemistry formulation – we can now assure the public that our SonoMask is working continuously, permanently and rapidly to neutralize the spread of COVID-19,” said Sonovia CEO Joshua Hershcovici. “We are proud of our latest accomplishment that will help people feel safe and protect their loved ones, all the while remaining the most ecologically sound option upon the PPE market.” Sonovia also participated in trials with Adler Plastic in Italy earlier this year, working toward creating a solution for carpets and other types of fabrics. The company boasted a 99.999% efficiency rate against bacteria during the pilot testing round. Furthermore, the Israeli fabric maker has attracted the cooperation of top brands such as Gucci, Chanel and Adidas, working on the Fashion for Good Plug and Play accelerator project – and earning a $250000 investment for their innovation.” We see our breakthrough technology transforming our everyday life, implemented in all textiles surrounding us: from the clothes we wear, to the textiles in our home, the textiles in our public spaces, in public transportation and of course as a protective measure in the workplaces & medical institutes – in a manner that ensures safer surroundings during these unusual times,” said Sonovia’s Chief Technology Officer Liat Goldhammer.

Jan 20, 2021

Multidimensional coherent spectroscopy reveals triplet state coherences in cesium lead-halide perovskite nanocrystals

Posted by in categories: chemistry, nanotechnology, physics, solar power, sustainability

Advanced optoelectronics require materials with newly engineered characteristics. Examples include a class of materials named metal-halide perovskites that have tremendous significance to form perovskite solar cells with photovoltaic efficiencies. Recent advances have also applied perovskite nanocrystals in light-emitting devices. The unusually efficient light emission of cesium lead-halide perovskite may be due to a unique excitonic fine structure made of three bright triplet states that minimally interact with a proximal dark singlet state. Excitons are electronic excitations responsible for the emissive properties of nanostructured semiconductors, where the lowest-energy excitonic state is expected to be long lived and hence poorly emitting (or ‘dark’).

In a new report now published in Science Advances, Albert Liu and a team of scientists in physics and chemistry at the University of Michigan, U.S., and Campinas State University, Brazil, used multidimensional coherent spectroscopy at cryogenic (ultra-cold) temperatures to study the fine structure without isolating the cube-shaped single . The work revealed coherences (wave properties relative to space and time) involving the triplet states of a cesium lead-iodide (CsPbI3) nanocrystal ensemble. Based on the measurements of triplet and inter-triplet coherences, the team obtained a unique exciton fine structure level ordering composed of a dark state, energetically positioned within the bright triplet manifold.

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