Category Chemistry/ Nanotechnology

Ultra-Light Aluminum: Chemist reports breakthrough in Material Design

Chemists from Utah State University, USA and Southern Federal University, Russia, computationally designed a new, metastable, ultra-light crystalline form of aluminum. Credit: Iliya Getmanskii, Southern Federal University, Russia

Chemists from Utah State University, USA and Southern Federal University, Russia, computationally designed a new, metastable, ultra-light crystalline form of aluminum. Credit: Iliya Getmanskii, Southern Federal University, Russia

Scientists computationally design new metastable, ultra-light crystalline form of aluminum using density functional calculations with imposing periodic boundary conditions. If you drop an aluminum spoon in a sink full of water, the spoon will sink to the bottom. That’s because aluminum, in its conventional form, is denser than water says Utah State University chemist Alexander Boldyrev.

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Scientists make Atoms-Thick ‘Post-It notes’ for Solar cells and Circuits

This is a schematic diagram (left) and electron microscope image (right) of a stacked set of semiconductor films, made using the Park lab's new technique. Credit: Park et. al./Nature

This is a schematic diagram (left) and electron microscope image (right) of a stacked set of semiconductor films, made using the Park lab’s new technique.
Credit: Park et. al./Nature

A new study describes an innovative method to make stacks of semiconductors just a few atoms thick. The technique offers scientists and engineers a simple, cost-effective method to make thin, uniform layers of these materials, which could expand capabilities for devices from solar cells to cell phones. Over the past half-century, scientists have shaved silicon films down to just a wisp of atoms in pursuit of smaller, faster electronics. For the next set of breakthroughs, though, they’ll need novel ways to build even tinier and more powerful devices.

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2D Electronics’ Metal or Semiconductor? Both

Molybdenum telluride (MoTe2) polymorphism. Metallic (right) and semiconducting (left) MoTe2 crystals are obtained side by side on the same plane. Rectangular crystals represent metal MoTe2, while hexagonal crystals are the characteristic feature of semiconducting MoTe2.

Molybdenum telluride (MoTe2) polymorphism. Metallic (right) and semiconducting (left) MoTe2 crystals are obtained side by side on the same plane. Rectangular crystals represent metal MoTe2, while hexagonal crystals are the characteristic feature of semiconducting MoTe2.

Researchers produced the first 2D field-effect transistor (FET) made of a single material. Modern life will be almost unthinkable without transistors. They are the ubiquitous building blocks of all electronic devices: each computer chip contains billions of them. However, as the chips become smaller and smaller, the current 3D field-electronic transistors (FETs) are reaching their efficiency limit...

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Physicists discover a Tri-Anion Particle with Colossal Stability

A rendering of protons, neutrons and electrons in an atom.

A rendering of protons, neutrons and electrons in an atom.

The particle could be used in battery creation and for other industrial purposes. A team in the lab of Puru Jena, Ph.D., a distinguished professor in the Department of Physics in the College of Humanities and Sciences, has created the most stable tri-anion particle currently known to science. A tri-anion particle is a combination of atoms that contains three or more electrons than protons. This discovery is novel because previously known tri-anion particles were unstable due to their numerical imbalance. These unstable particles dispel additional electrons, interrupting chemical reactions.

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