Archive for the ‘nanotechnology’ category

Dec 10, 2022

Scientists make it easier and safer to use carbon nanotubes in polymer nanocomposite materials

Posted by in categories: materials, nanotechnology

A research team from Skoltech, Aalto University, and Kurnakov Institute has recently developed a new, versatile and simple approach to using carbon nanotubes for manufacturing carbon nanotube-polymer nanocomposites. The method is reported in Carbon and involves making briquettes—dense packages of carbon nanotube powders. Nanocomposites made with briquettes perform equally well as those made from the more expensive masterbatches, which are also polymer-specific—that is, less versatile.

“We believe the use of dense briquettes of carbon nanotubes can significantly facilitate the development of the composite industry. This technique is cheap and applicable to a broad variety of polymer matrices, without sacrificing any of the electrical and thermal properties of the final material,” the lead author of the study, Skoltech Ph.D. student Hassaan Butt, stated.

Carbon nanotubes have been intensively investigated for decades by researchers from academia and industry because of their unique combination of electrical, thermal, and mechanical properties. Meanwhile, polymer-based nanocomposites have come to be the largest carbon nanotube application and the one closest to widespread integration into everyday life. It is easy to understand why: The smallest amounts of nanotubes added to a polymer endow the material with fundamentally new properties, such as and piezoresistivity, as well as crucially enhancing its thermal and .

Dec 10, 2022

Scaling up the production of vertically aligned, single-walled carbon nanotubes

Posted by in categories: materials, nanotechnology

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists are scaling up the production of vertically aligned single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNT) that could revolutionize diverse commercial products ranging from rechargeable batteries, automotive parts and sporting goods to boat hulls and water filters. The research appears in the journal Carbon.

Most CNT production today is used in bulk composite materials and thin films, which rely on unorganized CNT architectures. For many uses, organized CNT architectures such as vertically aligned forests provide important advantages for exploiting the properties of individual CNTs in macroscopic systems.

“Robust synthesis of vertically-aligned carbon nanotubes at large scale is required to accelerate deployment of numerous cutting-edge devices to emerging ,” said LLNL scientist and lead author Francesco Fornasiero. “To address this need, we demonstrated that the structural characteristics of single-walled CNTs produced at wafer scale in a growth regime dominated by bulk diffusion of the gaseous carbon precursor are remarkably invariant over a broad range of process conditions.”

Dec 10, 2022

Neural networks will help manufacture carbon nanotubes

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

Thin films made of carbon nanotubes hold a lot of promise for advanced optoelectronics, energy and medicine, however with their manufacturing process subject to close supervision and stringent standardization requirements, they are unlikely to become ubiquitous anytime soon.

“A major hindrance to unlocking the vast potential of nanotubes is their multiphase which is extremely difficult to manage. We have suggested using (ANN) to analyze and predict the efficiency of single-walled carbon nanotubes synthesis,” explains one of the authors of the study and Skoltech researcher, Dmitry Krasnikov.

In their work published in the prestigious Carbon journal, the authors show that machine learning methods, and, in particular, ANN trained on experimental parameters, such as temperature, gas pressure and , can help monitor the properties of the carbon nanotube films produced.

Dec 10, 2022

Hugo de Garis — From Nanotech to Femtotech — There’s Plenty More Room at the Bottom

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, genetics, information science, nanotechnology, robotics/AI

Discusses the possibility of Femtotech and the technological possibilities it may unlock. Not long ago nanotechnology was a fringe topic; now it’s a flourishing engineering field, and fairly mainstream. For example, while writing this article, I happened to receive an email advertisement for the “Second World Conference on Nanomedicine and Drug Delivery,” in Kerala, India. It wasn’t so long ago that nanomedicine seemed merely a flicker in the eyes of Robert Freitas and a few other visionaries!

But nano is not as small as the world goes. A nanometer is 10–9 meters – the scale of atoms and molecules. A water molecule is a bit less than one nanometer long, and a germ is around a thousand nanometers across. On the other hand, a proton has a diameter of a couple femtometers – where a femtometer, at 10–15 meters, makes a nanometer seem positively gargantuan. Now that the viability of nanotech is widely accepted (in spite of some ongoing heated debates about the details), it’s time to ask: what about femtotech? Picotech or other technologies at the scales between nano and femto seem relatively uninteresting, because we don’t know any basic constituents of matter that exist at those scales. But femtotech, based on engineering structures from subatomic particles, makes perfect conceptual sense, though it’s certainly difficult given current technology.

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Dec 9, 2022

Fusion scientists have developed ‘the nano-scale sculpture technique’

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, nuclear energy, particle physics, transportation

Year 2019 😁 nanoscale fusion.

A research team of fusion scientists has succeeded in developing “the nano-scale sculpture technique” to fabricate an ultra-thin film by sharpening a tungsten sample with a focused ion beam. This enables the nano-scale observation of a cross-section very near the top surface of the tungsten sample using the transmission electron microscope. The sculpture technique developed by this research can be applied not only to tungsten but also to other hard materials.

Hardened materials such as metals, carbons and ceramics are used in automobiles, aircraft and buildings. In a fusion reactor study, “tungsten,” which is one of the hardest metal materials, is the most likely candidate for the armour material of the device that receives the plasma heat/particle load. This device is called divertor. In any hardened materials, nanometer scale damages or defects can be formed very near the top surface of the materials. For predicting a material lifetime, it is necessary to know the types of the damages and their depth profiles in the material. To do this, we must observe a cross-section of the region very near the top surface of the material with nano-scale level.

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Dec 9, 2022

The Megastructure Compendium

Posted by in categories: cosmology, engineering, nanotechnology, nuclear energy, sustainability

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In the future humanity may build enormous structures, feats of mega-engineering that may rival planets or even be of greater scope. This episode catalogs roughly 100 major types of Megastructure, from those that are cities in space to those that rival galaxies.

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Dec 8, 2022

The smallest robotic arm you can imagine is controlled by artificial intelligence

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, particle physics, robotics/AI

Researchers used deep reinforcement learning to steer atoms into a lattice shape, with a view to building new materials or nanodevices.

In a very cold vacuum chamber, single atoms of silver form a star-like . The precise formation is not accidental, and it wasn’t constructed directly by either. Researchers used a kind of artificial intelligence called learning to steer the atoms, each a fraction of a nanometer in size, into the lattice shape. The process is similar to moving marbles around a Chinese checkers board, but with very tiny tweezers grabbing and dragging each atom into place.

The main application for deep is in robotics, says postdoctoral researcher I-Ju Chen. “We’re also building robotic arms with deep learning, but for moving atoms,” she explains. “Reinforcement learning is successful in things like playing chess or video games, but we’ve applied it to solve at the nanoscale.”

Dec 7, 2022

Biomembrane research findings could advance understanding of computing and human memory

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, computing, health, nanotechnology

While studying how bio-inspired materials might inform the design of next-generation computers, scientists at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory achieved a first-of-its-kind result that could have big implications for both edge computing and human health.

Results published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences show that an artificial is capable of long-term potentiation, or LTP, a hallmark of biological learning and . This is the first evidence that a cell membrane alone—without proteins or other biomolecules embedded within it—is capable of LTP that persists for many hours. It is also the first identified nanoscale structure in which memory can be encoded.

“When facilities were shut down as a result of COVID, this led us to pivot away from our usual membrane research,” said John Katsaras, a biophysicist in ORNL’s Neutron Sciences Directorate specializing in neutron scattering and the study of biological membranes at ORNL.

Dec 7, 2022

Nanorobots: The Future of Biotechnology

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, nanotechnology

Nanorobots are the next step in biotechnology and could be the hidden clue for curing cancer and other diseases for good. Nanotechnology doesn’t come without…

Dec 7, 2022

Researchers develop nano-based technology to fight osteoporosis

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, nanotechnology

University of Central Florida researchers have created unique technology for treating osteoporosis that uses nanobubbles to deliver treatment to targeted areas of a person’s body.

The new technology was developed by Mehdi Razavi, an assistant professor in UCF’s College of Medicine and a member of the Biionix Cluster at UCF, and UCF biomedical sciences student Angela Shar at the Biomaterials and Nanomedicine Lab, as part of the lab’s focus on developing tools for diagnostics and therapeutics.

Osteoporosis is a disease marked by an imbalance between the body’s ability to form new , or ossification, and break down, or remove, old , known as resorption.

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