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Nov 16, 2020

No losses: Scientists stuff graphene with light

Posted by in categories: chemistry, energy, nanotechnology, physics


Physicists from MIPT and Vladimir State University, Russia, have converted light energy into surface waves on graphene with nearly 90% efficiency. They relied on a laser-like energy conversion scheme and collective resonances. The paper was published in Laser & Photonics Reviews.

Manipulating light at the nanoscale is a task crucial for being able to create ultracompact devices for optical conversion and storage. To localize light on such a small scale, researchers convert optical radiation into so-called plasmon-polaritons. These SPPs are oscillations propagating along the interface between two materials with drastically different refractive indices—specifically, a metal and a dielectric or air. Depending on the materials chosen, the degree of surface wave localization varies. It is the strongest for light localized on a material only one atomic layer thick, because such 2-D materials have high refractive indices.

Continue reading “No losses: Scientists stuff graphene with light” »

Nov 16, 2020

UN Official Warns of “Famines of Biblical Proportions” in 2021

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food

2021 may not turn out well.

He’s hoping the world’s billionaires will donate their pandemic profits.

Nov 16, 2020

Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) Job Trends Important to Watch in 2021

Posted by in categories: employment, robotics/AI

The use of artificial intelligence (A.I.) and machine learning (ML), technologies that help people and organizations handle customer personalization and communication, data analytics and processing, and a host of other applications continues to grow.

An IDC report found three-quarters of commercial enterprise applications could lean on A.I. by next year alone, while an Analytics Insight report projects more than 20 million available jobs in artificial intelligence by 2023.

Due to A.I. and ML’s transformational reach, specialists with the right skills could find themselves with job opportunities across a wide range of industries. A global skills gap in the technologies means qualified applicants can expect good salaries and a strong bargaining position.

Nov 16, 2020

Pilot In A Real Aircraft Just Fought An AI-Driven Virtual Enemy Jet For The First Time

Posted by in categories: augmented reality, military, robotics/AI

Donning an augmented reality headset in the cockpit, a veteran F-22 pilot just had a dogfight with a projection of a Chinese J-20 fighter.

Nov 16, 2020

New Lightweight Molecule-Based Magnet Exhibits Unprecedented Magnetic Properties

Posted by in categories: chemistry, satellites

Magnets are to be found everywhere in our daily lives, whether in satellites, telephones or on fridge doors. However, they are made up of heavy inorganic materials whose component elements are, in some cases, of limited availability.

Now, researchers from the CNRS, the University of Bordeaux and the ESRF (European Synchrotron Radiation Facility in Grenoble)[1] have developed a new lightweight molecule-based magnet, produced at low temperatures, and exhibiting unprecedented magnetic properties.

This compound, derived from coordination chemistry[2], contains chromium, an abundant metal, and inexpensive organic molecules. This is the first molecule-based magnet that exhibits a ‘memory effect’ (i.e. it is capable of maintaining one of its two magnetic states) up to a temperature of 240 °C. This effect is measured by what is known as a coercive field, which is 25 times higher at room temperature for this novel material than for the most efficient of its molecule-based predecessors. This property therefore compares well with that of certain purely inorganic commercial magnets.

Nov 16, 2020

Marines Prep for Possible War in Europe During Massive East Coast Training Exercise

Posted by in category: military

The Marine Corps has put a lot of emphasis on countering China, but tens of thousands of East Coast leathernecks have their sights set on another part of the world.

Members of II Marine Expeditionary Force wrapped up a training exercise last week that ran from North Carolina to New York. The Marines were tasked with taking back territory in a friendly country that was invaded by a near-peer adversary.

It’s a scenario not unlike Russia’s effective annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014.

Nov 16, 2020

Novel glass materials made from organic and inorganic components

Posted by in categories: chemistry, materials

Cambridge/Jena (16.11.2020) Linkages between organic and inorganic materials are a common phenomenon in nature, e.g., in the construction of bones and skeletal structures. They often enable combinations of properties that could not be achieved with just one type of material. In technological material development, however, these so-called hybrid materials still represent a major challenge today.

A new class of hybrid glass materials

Researchers from the Universities of Jena (Germany) and Cambridge (GB) have now succeeded in creating a new class of hybrid glass materials that combine organic and inorganic components. To do this, the scientists use special material combinations in which chemical bonds between organometallic and inorganic glasses can be generated. They included materials composed of organometallic networks—so-called metal-organic frameworks (MOFs)—which have recently been experiencing rapidly increasing research interest. This is primarily because their framework structures can be created in a targeted manner, from the length scale of individual molecules up to a few nanometers. This achieves a control of porosity which can be adapted to a large number of applications, both in terms of the size of the pores and their permeability, and in terms of the chemical properties prevailing on the pore surfaces.

Nov 16, 2020

The building blocks of life can form even without stars or planets, scientists say

Posted by in categories: alien life, chemistry


The building blocks of life can form even before there are stars or planets, a team of researchers have found in a study.

The new research looked at “dark chemistry”, or the ways that new kinds of materials can form without energetic radiation.

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Nov 16, 2020

A Google Brain scientist turns to AI to make medicine more personal

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

Maithra Raghu, a research scientist at Google Brain, is betting that neural networks can become a powerful tool in medicine.

Nov 16, 2020

Chronic inflammation causes a reduction in NAD+

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension

NAD+ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide), a key metabolite central to an efficient and healthy metabolism, declines with age. This previously unexplained phenomena is associated with numerous age-related diseases and has spawned the development of many nutritional supplements aimed at restoring NAD+ to more youthful levels. Publishing in Nature Metabolism, researchers at the Buck Institute have identified chronic inflammation as a driver of NAD+ decline. They show that an increasing burden of senescent cells, which is also implicated in the aging process, causes the degradation of NAD via the activation of CD38 (cyclic ADP ribose hydrolase) a protein that is found on the cell membranes both inside and on the surface of many immune cells.

“We are very excited to link two phenomena which have been separately associated with aging and age-related disease,” said Eric Verdin, MD, Buck Institute President and CEO and senior author of the paper. “The fact that NAD+ decline and are intertwined provides a more holistic, systemic approach to aging and the discovery of CD38 macrophages as the mediator of the link between the two gives us a new target for therapeutic interventions.”