Thursday, April. 17 2014 | Last Update 08:25 AM MST
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By combining a synchrotron's bright X-ray beam with high speed X-ray cameras, scientists shot a 'movie' showing how organic molecules form into crystals. This is a first. Their new techniques will improve our understanding of crystal packing and should help lead to better electronic devices as well as pharmaceuticals -- indeed any product whose properties depend on precisely controlling crystallization.
Carbon-based nanostructures such as nanotubes, graphene sheets, and nanoribbons are unique building blocks showing versatile nanomechanical and nanoelectronic properties. These materials which are ordered in the nanoscale, that is, in the dimension of a millionth of millimeter, are promising candidates to envision applications in nanoscale devices, ranging from energy conversion to nano-electronic transistors.
A new article shows the potential applications for Google Glass in the surgical setting, particularly in relation to training. Personal portable information technology is advancing at a breathtaking speed. Google has recently introduced Glass, a device that is worn like conventional glasses, but that combines a computerized central processing unit, touchpad, display screen, high-definition camera, microphone, bone-conduction transducer, and wireless connectivity.
The Micro Phone Lens can turn any smartphone or tablet computer into a hand-held microscope. The soft, pliable lens sticks to a device's camera without any adhesive or glue and makes it possible to see things magnified dozens of times on the screen.
A breakthrough in the design of signal amplifiers for mobile phone masts could deliver a massive 200MW cut in the load on UK power stations, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by around 0.5 million tons a year.
In response to ever-crowded urban conditions in developing countries, researchers in Egypt have developed an inexpensive way of re-directing natural sunlight into dimly lit streets and alleys, where lack of sun is linked to health problems. The new optical device can increase brightness in alleyways by up to 400 percent.
Researchers have discovered a way to use existing semiconductors to detect a far wider range of light than is now possible, well into the infrared range. The team hopes to use the technology in detectors, obviously, but also in improved solar cells that could absorb infrared light as well as the sun's visible rays.
Chemical engineers hope smartphone-readable microparticles could crack down on counterfeiting. Some 2 to 5 percent of all international trade involves counterfeit goods, according to a 2013 United Nations report. These illicit products -- which include electronics, automotive and aircraft parts, pharmaceuticals, and food -- can pose safety risks and cost governments and private companies hundreds of billions of dollars annually. Many strategies have been developed to try to label legitimate products and prevent illegal trade -- but these tags are often too easy to fake, are unreliable, or cost too much to implement, according to researchers who have developed a new alternative.
Changes at the atom level in nanowires offer vast possibilities for improvement of solar cells and LED light. Researchers have discovered that by tuning a small strain on single nanowires they can become more effective in LEDs and solar cells.
Scientists have created a compound semiconductor of nearly perfect quality with embedded nanostructures containing ordered lines of atoms that can manipulate light energy in the mid-infrared range. More efficient solar cells, less risky and higher resolution biological imaging, and the ability to transmit massive amounts of data at higher speeds are only a few applications that this unique semiconductor will be able to support.
Gigabit wireless communications: Research could have significant implications for future of mobile devices
The millimeter-wave band (58-63GHz) is seen as a perfect candidate for short-range gigabit wireless communications. These networks are envisaged to satisfy the demands of future data-rate hungry applications but few studies have analysed the potential of frequency reuse at 60GHz.