• Etched trench in silicon film

    Novel technique developed to grow semiconductors on silicon

    Materials World magazine
    AmberWave Systems, based in Salem, USA, has developed a novel technique to grow semiconductors, such as germanium, gallium arsenide and indium phosphide, on silicon. Researchers hope the method will lead to faster and smaller transistors, and cheaper lasers and photonic devices. Faster and smaller transistors are the key to extending Moore's Law - the chip industry axiom that predicts doubling the number of transistors in an integrated electronic circuit every two years will improve performance. The team has epitaxially grown non-silicon semiconductors through chemical vapour deposition.
  • Carbon nanotubes for neural engineering

    Materials World magazine
    Scientists at the NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, USA, have developed vertical free-standing carbon nanofibres for use in neural-electrical interfaces. These could improve implantable biomedical devices for managing Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy and depression.
  • Diet coke can

    Keeping drink cans cooler for longer

    Packaging Professional magazine
    A Nanoskin insulation technology made from a metallised polymer film of one micron-thick vacuum cells could keep food or drinks cooler for longer.
  • Supraspheres

    Mouldable metals' created using nanocrystals

    Materials World magazine
    A method of assembling metal nanoparticles into a clay-like structure that can be moulded and fired has been developed by researchers at Northwestern University, Chicago, USA. Paternal applications include flexible electronics.
  • Plasma-coated stent

    3D plasma coating technique prevents stents from clogging

    Materials World magazine
    Researchers at the University of Ulster, UK, have developed a 3D plasma coating technique to prevent stents from developing neointima, where thick muscle tissue grows over the surface, leading to the blood vessel narrowing again. Thin films of carbon, ceramics and platinum are coated using the new method to prevent clogging.
  • New quantum dots can amplify light for tunable lasers

    Materials World magazine
    Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory, New Mexico, USA, have engineered a new version of quantum dots (semiconductor nanocrystals) that can amplify light for cheaper and tunable lasers at a range of wavelenghts at a range of wavelengths.
  • Polystyrene nanosphere dyes

    Polystyrene nanospheres replace toxic dyes to produce structural colours

    Materials World magazine
    With increasing concerns about the use of traditional dyes on the environment, materials that use polysytene nanospheres rather than toxic dyes to produce colour have been the subject of research by scientists at the University of Southampton, UK. The sphere size controls the wavelength which light is reflected and scattered from the film, offering new possibilities for structural colours. The materials have already attracted the interest of Unilever, Kodak, Merck and Degussa for applications ranging from packaging to automotives.
  • Air gaps microprocessor

    Air-gap insulation method increases chip speed

    Materials World magazine
    Air gap insulation between copper wires in microprossesors can increase chip speed making them more efficient, say researchers at IBM.
  • Carbon nanotube array

    Creating longer nanotubes

    Materials World magazine
    Attempts to grow carbon nanotubes have had limited success. However researchers from the Universiy of Cincinnati in the USA, claim to have used a novel composite catalyst made of alternating layers of metal and ceramics, to grow the world's longest array of aligned carbon nanotubes carbon nanotubes that have high mechanical, electrical and optical properties.
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    Single-phase bulk solids heat management

    Materials World magazine
    Scientists at the IBM T J Watson Research Center and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, both in the USA, are exploring the optical and thermal electric properties of new composite materials that harness the properties of multiple semiconductors in one superlatice material using different nanocrystal combinations to be used in the recovery of waste heat.

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