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Preview: EurekAlert! - Chemistry, Physics and Materials Sciences

EurekAlert! - Chemistry, Physics and Materials Sciences

The premier online source for science news since 1996. A service of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Last Build Date: Sat, 18 Nov 2017 11:18:01 EST

Copyright: Copyright 2017 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS); All rights reserved.

Hibernating ground squirrels provide clues to new stroke treatments

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NIH/National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke) In the fight against brain damage caused by stroke, researchers have turned to an unlikely source of inspiration: hibernating ground squirrels. While the animals' brains experience dramatically reduced blood flow during hibernation, just like human patients after a certain type of stroke, the squirrels emerge from their extended naps suffering no ill effects. Now, a team of NIH-funded scientists has identified a potential drug that could grant the same resilience to stroke patients.

Breakthrough could launch organic electronics beyond cell phone screens

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Princeton University, Engineering School) A discovery by an international team of researchers from Princeton University, the Georgia Institute of Technology and Humboldt University in Berlin points the way to more widespread use of an advanced technology generally known as organic electronics.

Not an illusion: Clever use of mirrors boosts performance of light-sheet microscope

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Marine Biological Laboratory) Using a simple 'mirror trick' and not-so-simple computational analysis, scientists affiliated with the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) have considerably improved the speed, efficiency, and resolution of a light-sheet microscope, with broad applications for enhanced imaging of live cells and embryos.

Scientific advances can make it easier to recycle plastics

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of Houston) Researchers report new approaches could dramatically increase the amount of plastic waste that can be successfully recycled.

Heavy nitrogen molecules reveal planetary-scale tug-of-war

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Rice University) Researchers from Rice University, UCLA, Michigan State and the University of New Mexico have discovered a planetary-scale tug-of-war between life, deep Earth and the upper atmosphere that is expressed in atmospheric nitrogen. The research appears this week in Science Advances.

Chinese team employs world's fastest supercomputer to simulate devastating earthquake

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Association for Computing Machinery) ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, has named a 12-member Chinese team the recipients of the 2017 ACM Gordon Bell Prize for their research project, '18.9-Pflops Nonlinear Earthquake Simulation on Sunway TaihuLight: Enabling Depiction of 18-Hz and 8-Meter Scenarios.' Using the Sunway TaihuLight, which is ranked as the world's fastest supercomputer, the team created 3-D visualizations relating to a devastating earthquake that occurred in Tangshan, China in 1976.

Taking a spin on plasma space tornadoes with NASA observations

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) New NASA mission results show that tornado-like swirls of space plasma create tumultuous boundaries in the near-Earth environment, letting dangerous high-energy particles slip into near Earth space.

Carefully crafted light pulses control neuron activity

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) Specially tailored, ultrafast pulses of light can trigger neurons to fire and could one day help patients with light-sensitive circadian or mood problems, according to a new study in mice at the University of Illinois. This study is the first demonstration of using coherent control to regulate function in a living cell.

Strain-free epitaxy of germanium film on mica

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(American Institute of Physics) Germanium was the material of choice in the early history of electronic devices, and due to its high charge carrier mobility, it's making a comeback. It's generally grown on expensive single-crystal substrates, adding another challenge to making it sustainably viable for most applications. To address this aspect, researchers demonstrate an epitaxy method that incorporates van der Waals' forces to grow germanium on mica. They discuss their work in the Journal of Applied Physics.

Interstellar space probes: Where's the brakes?!

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Goethe University Frankfurt) With a miniaturized space probe capable of being accelerated to a quarter of the speed of light, we could reach Alpha Centauri, our nearest star, in 20 to 50 years. However, without a mechanism to slow it down, the space probe could only collect data from the star and its planets as it zoomed past. A theoretical physicist at Goethe University Frankfurt has now examined whether interstellar spacecraft can be decelerated using 'magnetic sails.'

New interdisciplinary research program in biomedical innovation law

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Law) The Novo Nordisk Foundation has awarded a grant of DKK 35 million to Timo Minssen, Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen for establishing a Collaborative Research Programme in Biomedical Innova-tion Law (CeBIL).The aim of CeBIL is to analyse the most important legal obstacles to pharmaceutical innovation and thereby contribute to translating innova-tive biomedical research into new effective, affordable and easily acces-sible forms of treatment.

Electrochemistry opens up novel access to important classes of substances

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Johannes Gutenberg Universitaet Mainz) Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz in Germany have succeeded in overcoming the problem of electrochemical polymer formation and in developing a sustainable and efficient synthesis strategy for these important products for the first time.

Anti-tumor and immune-potentiating Enterococcus faecalis-2001 β-glucans

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Bentham Science Publishers) Enterococcus faecalis 2001 is a probiotic lactic acid bacterium and has been used as a biological response modifier (BRM). From physiological limitation of bacterial preservation in storage and safety, the live E. faecalis 2001 has been heat-treated and the BRM components containing high level of β-glucan, named EF-2001, were prepared.

BfR supports EFSA and ECHA with the development of European guidelines for the health assessment of endocrine disruptors

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(BfR Federal Institute for Risk Assessment) On behalf of the European Food Safety Authority, the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment hosted a hearing of experts on the practicability of hormone measurements in toxicological studies in Berlin on Oct. 18-19, 2017.

Semiconducting carbon nanotubes can reduce noise in carbon nanotube interconnects

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Bentham Science Publishers) This paper presents reduction of crosstalk and noise in CNT bundle interconnects. We propose the use of small diameter semiconducting CNTs as electromagnetic interference shields for CNT bundle interconnects.

NIR-driven H2 evolution from water: Expanding wavelength range for solar energy conversion

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Kyushu University, I2CNER) A Japanese research team at Kyushu University synthesized a compound that absorbs near-infrared light to produce hydrogen from water. The compound contains three ruthenium atoms connected by an organic molecule. The absorbed light stimulates electrons to 'jump' into orbitals that do not exist in other, similar compounds. This is the first successful use of infrared light to reduce water into hydrogen, which can be used for energy conversion and storage, and other industrial purposes in a future sustainable energy society.

RUDN chemists synthesized a new catalyst for oil and gas processing

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(RUDN University) A team of scientists from the Research Institute of Chemistry of RUDN University together with colleagues from major scientific centers created a new catalyst -- a substance that activates oxidation processes in low-reactive components of oil and gas. The new method of hydrocarbon processing will help efficiently produce valuable organic substances such as acids and alcohols, using a reaction that requires only minor heating and no increased pressure.

Evaluation of novel hybrid membranes for carbon capture

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology) Hybrid materials known as mixed matrix membranes are considered a promising approach to capture carbon dioxide and mitigate against global warming. These materials are derived from a polymer combined with porous nanoparticles. We show that materials prepared using porous organic polymers are resilient to the acidic impurities present in industrial gas streams, whereas other hybrid materials fail. This means that they can be effective in carbon capture applications where these impurities are present.

Researchers tunnel to a new light source

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Changchun Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics and Physics) The Ohio State University researchers, with scientists at Wright State University and Naval Research Laboratory, describe a promising new semiconductor LED made with GaN-based materials that could boost wallsocket efficiency by reducing energy losses and self-heating. If this new technology can be harnessed for large light output, the breakthrough could enhance LED solid state lighting without a significant change to the existing LED manufacturing facility.

Surrey develops new 'supercatalyst' to recycle carbon dioxide and methane

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of Surrey) The University of Surrey has developed a new and cost-effective catalyst to recycle two of the main causes behind climate change -- carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4).

Scientists capture colliding organic nanoparticles on video for first time

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Northwestern University) A Northwestern University research team is the first to capture on video organic nanoparticles colliding and fusing together. This unprecedented view of 'chemistry in motion' will aid Northwestern nanoscientists developing new drug delivery methods as well as demonstrate to researchers around the globe how an emerging imaging technique opens a new window on a very tiny world.

New theory rewrites opening moments of Chernobyl disaster

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Taylor & Francis Group) A brand-new theory of the opening moments during the Chernobyl disaster, the most severe nuclear accident in history, based on additional analysis is presented for the first time in the journal Nuclear Technology, an official journal of the American Nuclear Society.

A popular tool to trace Earth's oxygen history can give false positives

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Georgia Institute of Technology) If someone cries 'Eureka!' because it looks like oxygen appeared in Earth's ancient atmosphere long before the body of evidence indicated, be careful. If it was a chromium isotope system reading that caused the enthusiasm, it might need to be curbed.

Water world

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Washington University in St. Louis) Following the path of radicals and being able to identify many damaged residues because of incredibly accurate, expeditious and sensitive mass spectrometry, three scientists studied the great granddaddy of all photosynthetic organisms -- a strain of cyanobacteria -- to develop the first experimental map of that organism's water world.

'Ion billiards' cue novel material synthesis method

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Hokkaido University) A team of Hokkaido University researchers has developed a novel material synthesis method called proton-driven ion introduction (PDII) which utilizes a phenomenon similar to 'ion billiards.' The new method could pave the way for creating numerous new materials, thus drastically advancing materials sciences.