As climate change continues to push summer temperatures ever higher, the increased use of air conditioning in buildings could add to the problems of a warming world by further degrading air quality and compounding the toll of air pollution on human health, according to a new study.
Scientists have predicted new physics governing compression of water under a high-gradient electric field. Physicists found that a high electric field applied to a tiny hole in a graphene membrane would compress the water molecules traveling through the pore by 3 percent. The predicted water compression may eventually prove useful in high-precision filtering of biomolecules for biomedical research.
What would happen if a lithium battery failed in an electric car or a much-needed biomedical device? Polymer scientists are trying to prevent such failures with a new way involving polymer to make lithium batteries safer and perform better.
The first examples of covalent organic frameworks (COFs) were discovered in 2005, but quality has been poor and preparation methods uncontrolled. Now researchers have produced high-quality versions of these materials, demonstrate their superior properties and control their growth. The team's two-step process produces organic polymers with crystalline, two-dimensional structures. The precision of the material's structure and the empty space its hexagonal pores provide will allow scientists to design new materials with desirable properties.
A new theoretical study explains previous mystifying experimental results, in which coupled charged particles moved in exactly the opposite direction to that predicted. This apparently contradictory phenomenon is associated with the bandgap in dual-layer graphene structures, a bandgap which is very much smaller than in conventional semiconductors.
Climate lobbying is big business. A new analysis shows that between 2000 and 2016, lobbyists spent more than two billion dollars on influencing relevant legislation in the US Congress. Unsurprisingly, sectors that could be negatively affected by bills limiting carbon emissions, such as the electrical utilities sector, fossil fuel companies and transportation corporations had the deepest pockets.
Concerns about the effects of magnetic fields on human health require us to limit our exposure to them. Physicists have now developed a method for evaluating the circulation of magnetic fields in closed loops. This can help to limit exposure in electric and hybrid vehicle architectures, and in domestic and work environments.
Researchers have connected a graphene layer with two other atomic layers (molybdenum diselenide and tungsten disulfide) thereby extending the lifetime of excited electrons in graphene by several hundred times. The work may speed development of ultrathin and flexible solar cells with high efficiency.
Scientists have developed a chip that can detect a type of genetic mutation known as a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) and send the results in real time to an electronic device. The chip is at least 1,000 times more sensitive at detecting an SNP than current technology. The advance could lead to cheaper, faster and portable biosensors for early detection of genetic markers for diseases such as cancer.
Environmentally friendly building trends have boosted the popularity of window coatings that keep heating and cooling costs down by blocking out unneeded parts of sunlight. They have also inspired scientists and engineers to create thin, see-through solar cells to turn windows into miniature electricity generators. Researchers have gone a step further and combined these two functions into one window-compatible material that could double the energy efficiency of an average household.
Limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius will require not only reducing emissions of carbon dioxide, but also active removal of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This has prompted heightened interest in 'negative emissions technologies.' A new study evaluates the potential for recently described methods that capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through an 'electrogeochemical' process that also generates hydrogen gas for use as fuel and creates by-products that can help counteract ocean acidification.
Researchers have designed and successfully developed a high-power, silicon-nanowire thermoelectric generator which, at a thermal difference of only 5ºC, could drive various IoT devices autonomously in the near future.