Large-scale molecular memory

Another step toward a molecular computer A team of UCLA and Caltech chemists has brought us a step closer to the creation of a computer operating at the molecular level. The researchers, led by Scottish nanoscience pioneer Sir Fraser Stoddart*, recently demonstrated a 160-kilobit memory device that can store information via reconfigurable molecular switches. In […]

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Imaging atomic transport in real time

Dutch and US microscopy experts are imaging the transport of individual atoms in thin films, and hope within a few years to move their technique from lab to real world environments. Potential applications are diverse, and include the monitoring of biological processes, and close observation of chemical catalysis. Henny Zandbergen, from Delft University of Technology, […]

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Sandia Labs develop miniaturised screening devices

Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, US, are developing the next generation of security screening devices that could be used to identify hazardous and toxic materials, even when the materials are hidden by clothing and packaging materials. Working in the terahertz (THz) portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, the Sandia Labs team, led by Mike […]

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Growing new bones with nanotechnology

Bioengineers at the National University of Singapore, together with colleagues in London, UK, and Chennai, India, have developed a new composite that brings us a step closer to mimicking the architecture of the extracellular matrix which gives animal bodies form and shape. Bone tissue engineering is a medical treatment in which the principles of biology […]

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European Research Council launched

Can a new European agency lift scientific research out of the doldrums? Today saw the launch in Berlin of the European Research Council (ERC), at a press conference attended by the German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other assorted dignitaries. Dr Merkel said this morning that the ERC would become “a champion’s league for research”, and […]

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Rattus Rattus with Biggus Dickus

Size does matter … if you’re a rat. Research conducted by Liverpool University biologist Stephen Ramm shows that well-hung male rats enjoy an evolutionary advantage over less well-endowed competitors. Ramm collated measurement of penis size in rodents, primates, bats and carnivores, and compared member length with body weight and testis size. Bollock mass is supposedly […]

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THEMIS – auroral lights and magnetic storms

Following a delay due to high winds in Florida, five satellites that comprise the space component of the THEMIS* mission were launched last night aboard a Delta II rocket from Cape Canaveral. THEMIS is a multi-spacecraft and ground-based programme to study the aurora borealis, or northern lights. This was my field of expertise as a research […]

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Chinese ambitions in nanotechnology

Those who follow news of Chinese involvement with nanotechnology will be aware that the nation’s researchers are very active in this field. What there has not been, until now, is a quantitative understanding of exactly how much R&D investment there is in China. Step forward the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which, in […]

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Chemistry makes art (or is it the other way around?)

Californian chemists have made a compound of interlocked rings in the shape of Solomon’s Knot: an ancient symbol of wisdom considered sacred in many cultures. Older than Judaism, with which it is generally associated, the knot motif has been found in stone age carvings. In a marriage of nanoscience, mathematics and art, UCLA graduate student […]

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Nano-detectors for terahertz radiation

A Dutch researcher’s PhD project has resulted in a novel electromagnetic sensor that should have application in a number of areas including astronomy, atmospheric science and health monitoring. Merlijn Hajenius from the Kavli Institute of Nanoscience in Delft, together with colleagues at the SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research in Utrecht, has developed a hot […]

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