Researchers combined 2 2D materials – black phosphorus and bismuth vanadate – to form a biologically inspired water-splitting catalyst. Normal sunlight could drive the reactions and careful design of the catalyst enabled the expected ratio of hydrogen and oxygen production. Burning hydrogen produces harmless water with the potential to eliminate CO2 emissions and their environmental burden. In pursuit of technologies that could lead to a breakthrough in achieving a hydrogen economy, a key issue is making hydrogen cheaply...Read More
Category Chemistry/ Nanotechnology
Some animals, such as geckos, can easily climb up walls and across ceilings. But currently, no material exists that allows everyday people to scale walls or transverse ceilings as effortlessly. Now, scientists report in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces a dry adhesive that could someday make it easier to defy gravity. Geckos can scale walls because of their unique toe pads that help them quickly attach and detach from surfaces. Interestingly, gecko toe pads are covered with bristle-like layers of keratin, which helps it to stick – each pad is covered with microscopic pillars, which then branch out at the tips into even smaller structures.
Astronomers using the Green Bank Telescope have made the first definitive interstellar detection of benzonitrile, an intriguing organic molecule that helps to chemically link simple carbon-based molecules and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. This discovery is a vital clue in a 30-year-old mystery: identifying the source of a faint infrared glow that permeates the Milky Way and other galaxies.
All-weather friendly cooling technology works without mechanical compressors or chemical refrigerants, and generates drinking water. A team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has pioneered a new water-based air-conditioning system that cools air to as low as 18C without the use of energy-intensive compressors and environmentally harmful refrigerants. This game-changing technology could potentially replace the century-old air-cooling principle that is still being used in our modern-day air-conditioners. Suitable for both indoor and outdoor use, the novel system is portable and it can also be customised for all types of weather conditions.