STEM (scanning transmission electron microscopy) image of a one-dimensional array of F4TCNQ molecules (yellow-orange) on a gate-tunable graphene device. Credit: Berkeley Lab Removing one charged molecule from a one-dimensional array causes the others to alternately turn ‘on’ or ‘off,’ paving the way for information transfer in tiny circuits. Small electronic […]

ITER fusion reactor tokamak. Credit: ITER   ANIMATION A tokamak is a machine that confines a plasma using magnetic fields in a donut shape that scientists call a torus. Fusion energy scientists believe that tokamaks are the leading plasma confinement concept for future fusion power plants. In a tokamak, magnetic field coils confine plasma […]

The researchers created solar modules that were 5×5 cm2 and 10×10 cm2 – much larger than the 1.5 x 1.5 cm2 ones traditionally made in a lab, but smaller than commercial solar panels. Credit: OIST Perovskites are projected to be a game-changer in future solar technology but currently suffer from a short operational […]

MIT researchers have designed small molecules that spontaneously form nanoribbons when water is added. These molecules include a Kevlar-inspired “aramid” domain in their design, in green, which fixes each molecule in place and leads to nanoribbons that are stronger than steel. Parts of the molecules attracted to or repulsed from […]

MIT researchers have developed an automated way to design customized hardware, or “brains,” that speeds up a robot’s operation. A new system devises hardware architectures to hasten robots’ response time. Contemporary robots can move quickly. “The motors are fast, and they’re powerful,” says Sabrina Neuman. Yet in complex situations, like interactions with […]

ANIMATION New anode for aqueous batteries allows use of cheap, plentiful seawater as an electrolyte. Lithium-ion batteries are critical for modern life, from powering our laptops and cell phones to those new holiday toys. But there is a safety risk – the batteries can catch fire. Zinc-based aqueous batteries avoid […]

Nanosatellite thrusters that emit a stream of pure ions are the first of their kind to be entirely additively manufactured, using a combination of 3D printing and hydrothermal growth of zinc oxide nanowires. A stainless steel version (top) works better overall but is much more expensive to produce. MIT researchers […]

ANIMATION The odd, wavy pattern that results from viewing certain phone or computer screens through polarized glasses has led researchers to take a step toward thinner, lighter-weight lenses. Called moiré, the pattern is made by laying one material with opaque and translucent parts at an angle over another material of […]