Posts

July 11, 2014

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5:47 AM | Oxygen extends graphene's reach
The addition of oxygen atoms to graphene carbon on metal substrates opens up new possibilities for graphene chemistry.
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5:43 AM | Joining the dots for quantum computing
Arrays of electrons trapped in nanoscale circuitry could form the basis for future scalable quantum computers.
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5:38 AM | Uncertainty gives scientists new confidence in search for novel materials
Scientists have found a way to estimate uncertainties in computer calculations that are widely used to speed the search for new materials for industry, electronics, energy, drug design and a host of other applications.
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5:33 AM | Slate/NSF: The modal outcome of a Ph.D. is a postdoc
Credit: Jordan WeissmannJordan Weissman has tabulated the NSF's Survey of Earned Doctorates' "employment status at graduation" data into a really great set of graphs at Slate. He did it for life scientists, chemists, physicists (holy moly, look at all them physics postdocs), mathematicians, computer science Ph.D.s and engineering Ph.D.s. It's really worth a look. His comments on chemists:The near-term picture for chemists isn’t a whole lot rosier. Again, postdocs are hovering above 40 […]
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2:41 AM | Publication of the week, number 33, 11th July 2014
This weeks contribution has a golden touch to it and deals with the preparation of chiral cyclic alkylamino carbene-gold(I) complexes (CAAC-Au). They were discovered by collaboration between Prof. Waldmann at the Max-Plank institute and by Prof. Strohmann at the Technical University of Dortmund. They were trying to synthesise novel yohimbine analogues by the gold catalysed cyclisation […]

July 10, 2014

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6:13 PM | GSK process chemists-turned-distillers
I'm really going to miss Trevor Laird's editorials in Organic Process Research and Development when he retires at the end of this year. I've been reading them since I was a graduate student and have enjoyed them immensely.* This latest one has a really wonderful combination of food chemistry and #altchemjobs: ...In contrast to whisky, gin is ready to drink right after it has been distilled and diluted since all the flavour components (known as botanicals) are added prior to the […]
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4:36 PM | Paintball reveals the ugly side of everyone
A hilarious anecdote from NPR's post on team-building exercises gone wrong: Several years ago, things didn't go well for Peter Brooks when his former employer bused his division to a suburban Washington, D.C., field. They were divided into teams for a round of paintball. "We were issued safety goggles and paintball guns, one of which immediately misfired. It hit a district manager in the crotch," Brooks says. He remembers that the game quickly devolved into screaming, pleading […]
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2:58 PM | Daily Pump Trap: 7/10/14 edition
Some of the recent job postings at C&EN Jobs: Hmmmm: I think we're in the summer doldrums, though I can't be sure. Not too many positions over the past week or so.Knoxville, TN: An ad from Nature's Gifts International to work for, well, check it out:Lead ground-breaking research on products that benefit both People and the Environment, while working beside the creator of the most advanced vegetable waxes in the world! We’re looking for a Products Chemist to conduct catalytic […]
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2:47 PM | Breakthrough silicon oxide technology for high-density, next-generation computer memory
Use of porous silicon oxide reduces forming voltage, improves manufacturability.
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1:50 PM | YMS winners
The Royal Society of Chemistry’s 3rd Younger Members Symposium (YMS2014) was held towards the end of June at the University of Birmingham. Kicking off the day was Lesley Yellowlees who gave an inspirational plenary lecture covering her research and career path, in one of her final acts as RSC president. ‘Aspire to be the president [...]
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1:26 PM | Manipulating magnetic field effects in organic semiconductors
Researchers have have found a way to change the magnetoresistance of a thin (100 nm) organic semiconducting material by pairing it with an even thinner layer - a self-assembled monolayer - to alter its characteristics. By demonstrating that this kind of fine tuning is both straightforward and repeatable, the researchers have opened up an unprecedented level of control over materials that hold huge promise for next-generation technologies.
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12:05 PM | A low-temperature approach to flexible electronics
A nanoparticle ink that can be used for printing electronics without high-temperature annealing presents a possible profitable approach for manufacturing flexible electronics.
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10:48 AM | Bruker Introduces Inspire Nanoscale Chemical Mapping System
System features new PeakForce IR SPM mode for comprehensive nanocharacterization.
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10:43 AM | Just who's been talking about your work?
Want to know who's been tweeting about your work, or what news articles are out there on that latest bit of research? Altmetric are now making that easier than ever. Article level metricsWiley are piloting an "article level metric score" with Altmetric for every one of their articles in the Wiley online library. These scores give a level for how much the article is shared online. I only recently noticed this development after seeing a Tweet from Matteo Cavalleri (@physicsteo) about these […]
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9:32 AM | Future concepts: Carbon nanotube fluid heals damaged aircraft in flight (w/video)
Scientists and engineers at BAE Systems have lifted the lid on some futuristic technologies that could be incorporated in military and civil aircraft of 2040 or even earlier. One of the four concepts is a nanotechnology that allows jets to quickly heal themselves from damage sustained in flight.
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8:28 AM | New study advances limits for ultrafast nano-devices
A recent study provides new insights on the physical mechanisms governing the interplay of spin and heat at the nanoscale, and addresses the fundamental limits of ultrafast spintronic devices for data storage and information processing.
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8:24 AM | Speeding up data storage by a thousand times with 'spin current'
The storage capacity of hard drives is increasing explosively, but the speed with which all that data can be written has reached its limits. Researchers present a promising new technology which potentially allows data to be stored 1,000 times as fast. The technology, in which ultra-short laser pulses generate a 'spin current', also opens the way to future optical computer chips.
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8:09 AM | 'Nano-pixels' promise thin, flexible high-resolution displays
A new discovery will make it possible to create pixels just a few hundred nanometres across that could pave the way for extremely high-resolution and low-energy thin, flexible displays for applications such as 'smart' glasses, synthetic retinas, and foldable screens.
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7:45 AM | Self-assembly machines - a vision for the future of manufacturing
Industrial production processes, by and large, rely on robotic assembly lines that place, package, and connect a variety of disparate components. While the manufacturing world is dominated by robots, there are applications where the established processes of serial 'pick and place' and manipulation of single objects reach scaling limits in terms of throughput, alignment precision, and the minimal component dimension they can handle effectively. By contrast, the emerging methods of engineered […]
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7:37 AM | Timeline: National nanotechnology policies and regulations
This Timeline outlines important events related to nanotechnology policy and regulation in Canada, Australia, the European Union, the United Kingdom and the United States with an emphasis on developments since 2000.
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7:25 AM | How to uncover the true face of atomic nuclei
Protons and neutrons are the basic constituents of atomic nuclei. Are they distributed homogeneously, or perhaps in quartets consisting of two protons and two neutrons? Physicists have recently presented an idea how this issue may be investigated in future experiments.
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6:18 AM | IBM announces $3 bn research initiative to push limits of silicon technology to 7 nanometers
The first research program is aimed at so-called '7 nanometer and beyond' silicon technology that will address serious physical challenges that are threatening current semiconductor scaling techniques and will impede the ability to manufacture such chips. The second is focused on developing alternative technologies for post-silicon era chips using entirely different approaches, which IBM scientists and other experts say are required because of the physical limitations of silicon based […]
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6:06 AM | An unprecedented highly efficient method for developing friction materials with a desired frictional property
The method is able to drastically accelerate the development of materials that have a friction coefficient suited to the purpose of use, such as low-friction materials for reducing energy loss and high-friction materials required for high-performance brakes.
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5:58 AM | Precision control of the timing, structure and functions in molecular self-assembly
Researchers have developed a new methodology that can easily and precisely control the timing of and the structure as well as functions obtained in self-assembly of ?-conjugated molecules, which is a key technology in the field of organic electronics materials.

July 09, 2014

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6:12 PM | Scientists watch the molecular dynamics of photosynthesis in action
Researchers have caught a central step of photosynthesis in action for the first time. The team used the world's most powerful X-ray flashlight to record still frames of a molecular complex called photosystem II as it splits water into hydrogen and oxygen, a process that maintains the oxygen in earth's atmosphere.
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5:55 PM | Making quantum connections - The speed of information in a spin network
Scientists explore the dynamics of correlated quantum systems. What does it mean for objects to interact locally versus globally? How do local and global interactions translate into larger, increasingly connected networks? How fast can certain entanglement patterns form?
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3:52 PM | Researchers develop nanoantenna-based holography that could change the way we view the world.
Researchers have developed highly efficient holography based on nanoantennas that could be used for security as well as medical and recreational purposes.
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3:21 PM | Are non-compete agreements becoming more common?
Via WBUR in Boston, a couple of good stories about non-compete agreements (emphasis mine): BOSTON — Massachusetts lawmakers are considering a ban on noncompete agreements. Those are the clauses in employment contracts that bar an employee from working for a competitor, sometimes for several years... ...Last month, James Mitchell gave his two weeks notice. The 32-year-old told the Boston Web marketing company he worked for he was leaving to join a startup. And he was sure that he […]
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3:21 PM | Process Wednesday: Hydrolyzing on a boat
I've been following the story of the MV Cape Ray and its Field Deployable Hydrolysis System. Above, a video of one of the operators explaining the FDHS in detail. It makes me cringe a little bit to hear him refer to the reactor as a "titanium mixer", but he's on the ship, not me. Pretty cool.Also, here's Brandon Bruey, a B.S. chemist on the Cape Ray talking about the laboratory they've set up, fume hood and all.**Interesting to note that one of the pieces of equipment in that lab […]
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2:58 PM | Telling apart psoriasis and eczema
Eczema and psoriasis are chronic inflammatory skin diseases that sometimes are hard to tell apart because the irritated skin can look similar in both. Each condition requires a different kind of medical treatment. But when doctors can’t tell apart one condition from the other, it’s difficult for them to prescribe treatments, which can be expensive […]
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