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Archive for the ‘chemistry’ category: Page 8

Aug 3, 2021

High-energy laser weapons move quickly from prototype to deployment

Posted by in categories: chemistry, military, robotics/AI

High-energy #lasers are moving quickly from prototype to deployment for the #USArmy and #USNavy. We’ve helped make that happen.


A brief history of high-energy lasers.

The U.S. military has had electromagnetic spectrum weapons in mind since the 1960s. Throughout the 1980s, industry and military laid the groundwork for figuring out how to reach practical power levels, beam control and adaptive optics. The Department of Defense officially recognized lasers as a plausible future weapon in 1999, marking the beginning of formal research and development.

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Aug 3, 2021

Cracking one more layer of genetic code will finally enable personalized medicine, researcher says

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, genetics

When the Human Genome Project reached its ambitious goal of mapping the entire human genome, it seemed the world was entering an era of personalized medicine, where evidence from our own specific genetic material would guide our care.

That was 2003, and nearly a generation after that spectacular collaborative achievement, we are still waiting for that promise to materialize. We may know that a person carries a gene associated with breast cancer, for example, but not whether that person will go on to develop the disease.

New research by McMaster University evolutionary biologist Rama Singh suggests the reason is that there is another, hidden layer that controls how interact, and how the many billions of possible combinations produce certain results. That layer is composed of largely uncharted biochemical pathways that in cells through chemical reactions.

Aug 3, 2021

RNA CRISPR gene editing boosts gene knockdown in human cells

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, biotech/medical, chemistry, genetics

Modified RNA CRISPR boosts gene knockdown in human cells.


In the latest of ongoing efforts to expand technologies for modifying genes and their expression, researchers in the lab of Neville Sanjana, PhD, at the New York Genome Center (NYGC) and New York University (NYU) have developed chemically modified guide RNAs for a CRISPR system that targets RNA instead of DNA. These chemically-modified guide RNAs significantly enhance the ability to target – trace, edit, and/or knockdown – RNA in human cells.

Longevity. Technology: In the study published in Cell Chemical Biology, the research team explores a range of different RNA modifications and details how the modified guides increase efficiencies of CRISPR activity from 2-to 5-fold over unmodified guides. They also show that the optimised chemical modifications extend CRISPR targeting activity from 48 hours to four days.

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Aug 3, 2021

Scientists boost gene knockdown in human cells via chemically modified RNA CRISPR

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, genetics

In the latest of ongoing efforts to expand technologies for modifying genes and their expression, researchers have developed chemically modified guide RNAs for a CRISPR system that targets RNA instead of DNA. These chemically-modified guide RNAs significantly enhance the ability to target — trace, edit, and/or knockdown — RNA in human cells.


In a study published today in Cell Chemical Biology, the team explores a range of different RNA modifications and details how the modified guides increase efficiencies of CRISPR activity from 2-to 5-fold over unmodified guides. They also show that the optimized chemical modifications extend CRISPR targeting activity from 48 hours to four days. The researchers worked in collaboration with scientists at Synthego Corporation and New England BioLabs, bringing together a diverse team with expertise in enzyme purification and RNA chemistry. To apply these optimized chemical modifications, the research team targeted cell surface receptors in human T cells from healthy donors and a “universal” segment of the genetic sequence shared by all known variants of the RNA virus SARS-COV-2, which is responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic.

Increasing the efficiencies and “life” of CRISPR-Cas13 guides is of critical value to researchers and drug developers, allowing for better gene knockdown and more time to study how the gene influences other genes in related pathways.

“CRISPR RNA guide delivery can be challenging, with knockdown time limited due to rapid guide degradation. We were inspired by the guide modifications developed for other DNA-targeting CRISPRs and wanted to test if chemically modified guides could improve knockdown time for RNA-targeting CRISPR-Cas13 in human cells,” says Alejandro Méndez-Mancilla, PhD, a postdoctoral scientist in the lab and co-first author of the study.

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Aug 1, 2021

World’s first home hydrogen battery powers an average home for two days

Posted by in categories: business, chemistry, mobile phones, solar power, sustainability

The Australian company LAVO has developed a hydrogen storage system for domestic solar systems. It is the world’s first integrated hybrid hydrogen battery that combines with rooftop solar to deliver sustainable, reliable, and renewable green energy to your home and business. Developed in partnership with UNSW, Sydney, Australia, and Design + Industry, the Hydrogen Battery System from LAVO consists of an electrolysis system, hydrogen storage array, and fuel cell power system rolled into one attractive cabinet. When the electricity from the solar system on the roof is not needed, it is stored in the form of hydrogen. This then serves as fuel for the fuel cell when the solar system is not supplying electricity.


However, LAVO’s hydrogen hybrid battery delivers a continuous output of 5 kW and stores over 40kWh of electricity – enough to power the average Australian home for two days on a single charge. The system is designed to easily integrate with existing solar panels, creating a significant opportunity for LAVO to have an immediate and notable impact. There are Wi-Fi connectivity and a phone app for monitoring and control, and businesses with higher power needs can run several in parallel to form an intelligent virtual power plant.

Hydrogen is often incorrectly seen as an unsafe fuel, usually due to the 1937 Hindenburg disaster. However, the company says any leaks will disperse quickly, though, making it inherently no more dangerous than other conventional fuels such as gasoline or natural gas. This innovation has a lifespan of approximately 30 years, which is three times longer than that of lithium batteries, thanks to its reliance on hydrogen gas rather than the chemicals in a conventional battery.

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Jul 31, 2021

China nuclear reactor shutdown may be ‘a sign of caution over new design’

Posted by in categories: chemistry, nuclear energy

“I suspect the French side is wondering whether the fuel rod damage is caused by something that they can directly address by modifying the equipment design, the water chemistry around the fuel, the plant operating procedures, or maybe even the fuel fabrication process to ensure that this doesn’t happen in other plants that are based on the Taishan design,” Fishman said.


Developer could be trying to find source of fuel rod damage to alter design in the future, analyst says.

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Jul 31, 2021

Acoustic tweezers can pick up objects without physical contact

Posted by in categories: biological, chemistry, particle physics

Researchers from Tokyo Metropolitan University have developed a new technology which allows non-contact manipulation of small objects using sound waves. They used a hemispherical array of ultrasound transducers to generate a 3D acoustic field that stably trapped and lifted a small polystyrene ball from a reflective surface. Their technique employs a method similar to laser trapping in biology, but adaptable to a wider range of particle sizes and materials.

The ability to move objects without touching them might sound like magic, but in the world of biology and chemistry, technology known as has been helping scientists use light to move microscopic objects around for many years. In fact, half of the 2018 Nobel Prize for Physics, awarded to Arthur Ashkin (1922–2020) was in recognition of the remarkable achievements of this technology. But the use of laser light is not without its failings, particularly the limits placed on the properties of the objects which can be moved.

Enter acoustic trapping, an alternative that uses sound instead of optical waves. Sound waves may be applied to a wider range of sizes and materials, and successful manipulation is now possible for millimeter-sized particles. Though they haven’t been around for as long as their optical counterparts, acoustic levitation and manipulation show exceptional promise for both lab settings and beyond. But the that need to be surmounted are considerable. In particular, it is not easy to individually and accurately control vast arrays of ultrasound transducers in real time, or to get the right sound fields to lift objects far from the transducers themselves, particularly near surfaces that reflect .

Jul 30, 2021

Chinese giant CATL launches a commercial salt-based battery for EVs

Posted by in categories: chemistry, energy

The future of energy storage is getting better. Welcome salt batteries! cheaper & more abundant than lithium!

It is claimed to have an energy density of up to 160 Wh/kg, which is a far cry from the density offered by lithium batteries of up to 285 Wh/kg, but is nothing to sneeze at in the world of sodium batteries. It can also be charged to 80 percent capacity in 15 minutes at room temperature, and maintain 90 percent of its capacity in temperatures of-20 °C (−4 °F).


A cheap and abundant material like salt might have plenty to offer the world of science, and one field where it could have game-changing effects is battery chemistry. Leveraging salt could help us avoid much of the cost and difficulty in sourcing scarcer lithium, and Chinese giant CATL is looking to lead the charge by launching its first commercial sodium-ion battery.

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Jul 29, 2021

A single-molecule laser nanospectroscopy technique with micro-electron volt energy resolution

Posted by in categories: chemistry, computing, nanotechnology

When molecules are excited, they can give rise to a variety of energy conversion phenomena, such as light emission and photoelectric or photochemical conversion. To unlock new energy conversion functions in organic materials, researchers should be able to understand the nature of a material’s excited state and control it.

So far, many scientists have used spectroscopy techniques based on in research focusing on excited states. Nonetheless, they were unable to use light to examine nanoscale materials, due to its limitations in so-called diffraction. The spectroscopic measurement methods applied to electron and scanning probe microscopes that can observe substances with atomic resolutions, on the other hand, are still underdeveloped.

Researchers at RIKEN, the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), University of Tokyo and other Institutes in Japan have recently developed a laser nanospectroscopy technique that could be used to examine individual molecules. This technique, presented in a paper published in Science, could open up new possibilities for the development of various new technologies, including light-emitting diodes (LEDs), photovoltaics and photosynthetic cells.

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Jul 29, 2021

World’s cheapest energy storage will be an iron-air battery, says Jeff Bezos-backed start-up

Posted by in categories: chemistry, energy

Form Energy, the billionaire-backed start-up that claimed to have developed an innovative low-cost 150-hour battery, has finally revealed its battery chemistry after more than a year of high-profile secrecy.

The Boston-based company says its first commercial product is a “rechargeable iron-air battery capable of delivering electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with conventional power plants and at less than 1/10th the cost of lithium-ion”.

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