Industry News

December 2018
Prospects for Creating Photonic Integrated Circuits

Fig. 1. (a) Illustration of a surface plasmon propagating along a graphene sheet at ?<0t<0. (b) Time dependence of the graphene carrier density.

(c) Dispersion diagram showing the frequency transformation of the initial plasmon when the carrier density decreases from ?1N1 to ?2N2.

The transition from electronic integrated circuits to faster, more energy-efficient and interference-free optical circuits is one of the most important goals in the development of photon technologies. Photonic integrated circuits (PICs) are already used today for transmitting and processing signals in optical
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Date:
12/28/2018
The World's Fastest Write Speed for Embedded Memory

(a) Mock-up image of 128Mbit-density STT-MRAM (b) Shmoo plot for write speed versus supply voltage, which shows the measured operation bit rate at each speed and voltage in color gradation.

A research team, led by Professor Tetsuo Endoh at Tohoku University, has successfully developed 128Mb-density STT-MRAM (spin-transfer torque magnetoresistive random access memory) with a write speed of 14 ns for use in embedded memory applications, such as cache in IOT and AI. This is currently the world's fastest
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Date:
12/28/2018
Spin-based quantum computers have the potential to tackle difficult mathematical problems that cannot be solved using ordinary computers, but many problems remain in making these machines scalable. Now, an international group of researchers led by the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science have crafted a new
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Date:
12/28/2018

New Hydraulic Actuator Will Make Robots Tougher

This figure shows a seven-axis hydraulic robot arm breaking concrete slabs, each 30 mm thick. This is a prototype for comparison with a four-legged robot also being developed in this project by Waseda University, Meiji University, and others, produced at approximately the same size. It consists of seven of the new hydraulic motors.

Researchers at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) have developed a hydraulic actuator[1] that will allow tough robots to operate in disaster sites and other harsh environments. Tokyo Tech Venture H-MUSCLE Corporation?has been established to pursue applications for the actuator, and shipping of product
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12/27/2018
A new Energy-Efficient Mechanism Using the Rashba Effect

First-principles prediction of one-dimensional giant Rashba splittings.

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology proposed new quasi-1D materials for potential spintronic applications, an upcoming technology that exploits the spin of electrons. They performed simulations to demonstrate the spin properties of these materials and explained the mechanisms behind their behavior. Conventional
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12/27/2018
Making 'Smart' Safe -- When Every Millisecond Matters

Click image to enlarge

"We're enriching the toolbox of CPS architects and engineers and making it possible for them to rigorously develop networked cyber physical systems with hard-real-time performance guarantees for applications in which every millisecond matters," says Dr. Liang Cheng, an associate professor of computer science and engineering at Lehigh University's P.C Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science. Cheng, who is a member of the Leadership Council of Lehigh's new Institute for Cyber Physical Infrastructure and Energy (I-CPIE), was recently awarded nearly $500,000 in funding from the National Science Foundation's Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) program.

A driver behind the wheel of a luxury sedan spills a cup of hot coffee and, in a moment of distraction, suddenly faces a life-shattering crash. But in a split second--cue the dramatic pause--the vehicle's automatic breaking or crash avoidance technology engages the car's brakes. A time-critical
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Date:
12/27/2018
Increasing the Capacity of Lithium-Ion Batteries by 15%

The efficiency was increased by adding a solid electrolyte to the battery's cathode.

Lithium-ion batteries are used in different areas - from mobile phones and laptops to cardiac pacemakers and electric vehicles. Currently, scientists are trying to increase battery power while reducing its size. The team of researchers from Russia and China in collaboration with an industrial partner managed
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12/26/2018
Droughts Boost Emissions as Hydropower Dries up

This photo is an aerial view of Folsom Dam and Lake in Sacramento County shows low water levels in January 2014.

When hydropower runs low in a drought, western states tend to ramp up power generation - and emissions - from fossil fuels. According to a new study from Stanford University, droughts caused about 10 percent of the average annual carbon dioxide
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12/23/2018
Electrolyte Design is a Game-Changer for Magnesium Batteries

University of Houston researchers Yan Yao, left, Hui Dong and Yanliang Leonard Liang led a project to improve the performance of magnesium batteries.

Researchers from the University of Houston and the Toyota Research Institute of America have discovered a promising new version of high-energy magnesium batteries, with potential applications ranging from electric vehicles to battery storage for renewable energy systems. The battery, reported Dec.
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12/23/2018
Building a Sustainable Future, one Brick at a Time

An international team of scientists, led by King's College London, have developed a thermogalvanic brick that generates electricity as long as the two faces of the brick are at different temperatures.

This is due to balanced 'electrochemical' reduction and oxidation processes occurring inside the brick at the two faces. As long as electrodes at these faces are at different temperatures, the electrochemical reactions occur and electricity is generated. The compounds inside are not consumed, do not run out
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12/20/2018
2.5 Million Euros for Developing Innovative Electrolytic Cell
Working together with external partners, chemists, materials scientists and chemical engineers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) have developed an innovative microcell for water electrolysis. They hope to replace standard plate electrodes used to split water into oxygen and hydrogen
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12/20/2018
MEMS Sensor Chip with Ultra-High Quality Diamond Cantilevers

Micrographs of the diamond MEMS chip developed through this research and one of the diamond cantilevers integrated into the chip

A NIMS-led research group succeeded in developing a high-quality diamond cantilever with among the highest quality (Q) factor values at room temperature ever achieved. The group also succeeded for the first time in the world in developing a single crystal diamond microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) sensor
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12/20/2018
Powder Could Help cut CO2 Emissions
Scientists at the University of Waterloo have created a powder that can capture CO2 from factories and power plants. The powder, created in the lab of Zhongwei Chen, a chemical engineering professor at Waterloo, can filter and remove CO2 at facilities powered by fossil fuels
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12/19/2018
Disordered Crystals are Promising for Future Batteries
Tiny, disordered particles of magnesium chromium oxide may hold the key to new magnesium battery energy storage technology, which could possess increased capacity compared to conventional lithium-ion batteries, find UCL and University of Illinois at Chicago researchers. The study, published today
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Date:
12/19/2018
Artificial Intelligence Meets Materials Science

A Texas A&M Engineering research team harnesses the power of machine learning and artificial intelligence to create an open source software package that autonomously discovers new materials.

A Texas A&M engineering research team is harnessing the power of machine learning, data science and the domain knowledge of experts to autonomously discover new materials. The team developed and demonstrated an autonomous and efficient framework capable of optimally exploring a materials design
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Date:
12/18/2018
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- In microelectronic devices, the bandgap is a major factor determining the electrical conductivity of the underlying materials. Substances with large bandgaps are generally insulators that do not conduct electricity well, and those with smaller bandgaps are semiconductors. A more recent class
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Date:
12/18/2018
A Silver Bullet to fix Waste Energy Issues
A team of researchers led by Osaka University developed an inexpensive large-scale flexible thermoelectric generator (FlexTEG) module with high mechanical reliability for highly efficient power generation. Through a change in direction of the top electrodes at the two sides of the module and the use of high
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Date:
12/18/2018
Data Storage Using Individual Molecules

Graphic animation of a possible data memory on the atomic scale: A data storage element -- consisting of only 6 xenon atoms -- is liquefied by a voltage pulse.

Researchers from the University of Basel have reported a new method that allows the physical state of just a few atoms or molecules within a network to be controlled. It is based on the spontaneous self-organization of molecules into extensive networks with pores about one nanometer in size. In the journal 'small',
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12/17/2018
New Low-Energy Nanolaser That Shines in all Directions

It contains ten patches that each have their own silver nanoparticle pattern. The colors on the sample are not the laser light (the laser is not on) but reflections, similar to the colors that can be seen on the surface of a compact disk.

Researchers in Eindhoven have developed a new type of low-energy, nanoscale laser that shines in all directions. The key to its omnidirectional light emission is the introduction of something that is usually highly undesirable in nanotechnology: irregularities in the materials. The researchers foresee a vast
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Date:
12/17/2018
Birth of a Hybrid Material

This is Anna Poznyak, head of the project and researcher at the NUST MISIS Department of Functional Nanosystems and High-Temperature Materials.

Materials scientists from NUST MISIS and the Merzhanov Institute of Structural Macrokinetics & Materials Science have developed a new method for producing bulk MAX-phases -- layered materials which simultaneously possess the properties of metals and ceramics. By combining the methods of self-propagating
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12/14/2018
Maximizing the Effectiveness of Platinum in Fuel Cells

Argonne chemist Lina Chong (foreground) holds a sample catalyst while Argonne chemist Di-Jia Liu looks on.

In the journal Science, Argonne chemists have identified a new catalyst that maximizes the effectiveness of platinum. Platinum is a precious metal more rare than silver or gold. Renowned in the fuel cell community for its effectiveness in converting hydrogen and oxygen into water and
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Date:
12/14/2018
High-Efficiency Discovery Drives Low-Power Computing
EDMONTON-- Challenge any modern human to go a day without a phone or computer, and you'd be hard pressed to get any takers. Our collective obsession with all things electronic is driving a dramatic daily drain on the world's power. In fact, according to studies from the Semiconductor
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12/13/2018
Computer Chip Vulnerabilities Discovered by WSU Researchers

This is Partha Pande, Boeing Centennial Chair, left, and Janardhan Rao Doppa, assistant professor in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

PULLMAN, Wash. - A Washington State University research team has uncovered significant and previously unknown vulnerabilities in high-performance computer chips that could lead to failures in modern electronics. The researchers found they could damage the on-chip communications system and shorten
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12/13/2018
ESRF Puts its Shining Light in Standby Mode

This is a picture of the ESRF's third generation storage ring to be dismantled.

Grenoble - "No beam for a while. Restart in about 20 months". Early this morning, operators of the ESRF Control room turned off the beam, ending 26 years of very successful operation of the European Synchrotron, the world's most powerful synchrotron light source. 2018, is a key date in the history
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Date:
12/10/2018
Photocathodes With High Quantum Efficiency

Photocathode after its production in the preparatory system.

Teams from the accelerator physics and the SRF groups at HZB are developing a superconducting linear accelerator featuring energy recovery (Energy Recovery Linac) as part of the bERLinPro project. It accelerates an intense electron beam that can then be used for various applications - such as generating brilliant
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Date:
12/07/2018
Supercomputers Without Waste Heat

This is a scanning tunnelling microscope installed in a helium cooling device seen from below (with the sample stage removed). The mechanism for positioning the microscope tip above the sample surface is visible (center of image).

Generally speaking, magnetism and the lossless flow of electrical current ("superconductivity") are competing phenomena that cannot coexist in the same sample. However, for building supercomputers, synergetically combining both states comes with major advantages as compared to today's semiconductor
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12/07/2018
Fighting Smog Supports Solar Power

Milky, gray smog shrouds many of the valleys and lowlands of eastern China in January 2017. The orange star marks the location of Beijing.

The air in Beijing is often very bad. The city sinks under a brown cover made of exhaust gases from industry, cars and coal fires, which blow a lot of harmful particulate matter, soot, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides into the air. The dirty air causes massive damage to human health. According to
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Date:
12/06/2018
The main trend in the development of hardware components for digital and analog electronic equipment is to reduce the size of the active regions of diode and transistor structures. This can be achieved by improving the performance characteristics of micro- and nanoelectronics devices (increasing their speed
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Date:
12/06/2018
Helping Broaden Participation of Minorities in STEM Fields

A graduate student gains hands-on experience with state-of-the-art nanotechnology equipment in the Center for Nanotechnology Education and Utilization Teaching Cleanroom.

Traditionally, minority students have been underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs -- and in the STEM marketplace. And as the U.S. innovation economy continues to grow, there comes an increasing requirement for skilled STEM workers to maintain the nation's status
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Date:
12/06/2018
The next-generation mobile network and fast data transmission solutions can be used to collect a huge amount of data on vehicles on the road. The information can be used, for example, to provide road weather services, carry out road maintenance and control self-driving cars. Ultimately the aim is to reduce accidents. VTT's
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12/05/2018
Artificial Synapses Made From Nanowires

Image captured by an electron microscope of a single nanowire memristor (highlighted in colour to distinguish it from other nanowires in the background image). Blue: silver electrode, orange: nanowire, yellow: platinum electrode. Blue bubbles are dispersed over the nanowire. They are made up of silver ions and form a bridge between the electrodes which increases the resistance.

Scientists from Jülich together with colleagues from Aachen and Turin have produced a memristive element made from nanowires that functions in much the same way as a biological nerve cell. The component is able to both save and process information, as well as receive numerous signals in parallel. The resistive
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Date:
12/05/2018
Blast to the Future

Principal investigator Subramanian Sankaranarayanan (left), and co-principal investigators Mathew Cherukara (center), Henry Chan (right) and Badri Narayanan (not pictured) are developing a new machine learning based software that will enable industry to more quickly and efficiently perform the molecular dynamics simulations they need to vet the performance of new materials for their products.

Discovering and designing new materials is frequently an expensive and time-intensive process. To speed it up and create new materials for everything from aeronautics to wind turbines, scientists have begun to rely on complex modeling and simulation platforms. Thanks to a new grant from the U.S. Department
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Date:
12/05/2018
A Step Closer to Fusion Energy

Researchers have moved a step closer to harnessing fusion energy by showing how imaging enables better testing of components for devices.

Harnessing nuclear fusion, which powers the sun and stars, to help meet earth's energy needs, is a step closer after researchers showed that using two types of imaging can help them assess the safety and reliability of parts used in a fusion energy device. Scientists from Swansea University, Culham
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12/05/2018
Aluminum Nitride to Extend Life of Solar Power Plants

NUST MISIS scientists together with their colleagues from the Central Metallurgical R&D Institute (Cairo, Egypt) have developed a composite material which will extend the life of solar towers -- installations for collecting Solar thermal energy -- from 2-3 to 5 years. The research article has been published in the Renewable Energy journal.

Today, solar power plants (SPP) are becoming increasingly popular, making it possible to collect and process solar energy on an industrial scale. So-called solar towers are among the most promising types of SPPs. This is a special structure that is a high tower with a water tank and a turbine system inside.
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Date:
12/04/2018
A bit of a Stretch ... Material That Thickens as it's Pulled

Liquid crystal elastomer with auxetic capabilities, showing its flexibility and high optical quality.

Scientists have discovered the first synthetic material that becomes thicker - at the molecular level - as it is stretched. Researchers led by Dr Devesh Mistry from the University of Leeds discovered a new non-porous material that has unique and inherent "auxetic" stretching properties.
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Date:
12/04/2018
Full of Energy

(Left to right) University of Utah electrical and computer engineering assistant professor Sriram Krishnamoorthy, associate professor Mike Scarpulla, and assistant professor Berardi Sensale-Rodriguez have received a $1.88 million grant to study the properties of gallium oxide as a semiconductor for more efficient power converters. The material could prove to be much more efficient, losing less heat and providing longer power to devices such as drones or all-electric planes, trains and buses.

Electricity as a form of energy is not exactly efficient because much of it is lost as heat. Or as University of Utah electrical and computer engineering associate professor Mike Scarpulla says: "Heat is the universe's garbage can for energy." Inside power systems, converters and electronic
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Date:
12/04/2018
Graphene Unlocks New Potential For 'Smart Textiles'

Graphene unlocks new potential for 'smart textiles.'

The quest to create affordable, durable and mass-produced 'smart textiles' has been given fresh impetus through the use of the wonder material Graphene. An international team of scientists, led by Professor Monica Craciun from the University of Exeter Engineering department, has pioneered a new technique
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Date:
12/04/2018