nanoscience

Tag archives for nanoscience

Ever imagined that an Xbox controller could help open a window into the nanoworld of groundbreaking physics? Well, check out the video above. Brookhaven scientist Ray Conley designed that one-of-a-kind machine to grow (through a technique called sputtering deposition) atomically precise lenses that can focus x-rays to within one billionth of one meter, revealing the…

See the way those smooth, amorphous blobs rapidly transform into textured honeycombs? Something similar is probably happening right now inside your laptop or smartphone’s battery, providing you with portable power. But the cherished efficiency and portability of those compact lithium-ion batteries comes with a cost: each cycle of discharge/recharge degrades the material’s essential structure and…

High-temperature superconductors (HTS), capable of storing and transmitting electricity with perfect efficiency, are a theoretical stumbling block. The mechanism underlying HTS behavior is a mystery, and the subject of significant contention and investigation among scientists. This puzzle, unlike headline-making unknowns such as dark energy (admittedly awesome and worth losing sleep over), could revolutionize our entire…

One of physics’ greatest tricks is polarization. Take magnets, for example, such as those commonly found on refrigerators holding up shopping lists and Christmas cards. These have the familiar north/south polarization that we can experience as attraction and repulsion. That magnetic orientation persists all the way down to the individual molecules, which actually align to…

With nanotechnology rapidly advancing, the sci-fi dream of a Star Trek replicator becomes increasingly less fantastic. But such radical technology would, in theory, require the kind of subatomic manipulation that far exceeds current capabilities. Scientists lack both the equipment and the fundamental knowledge of quantum mechanics (the Standard Model, for all its elegance, remains incomplete)…

Let’s start with a number, by chance a palindrome: 1441. Imagine taking that many photographs of a single object, a soccer ball, say – obsessively capturing it from every angle to expose all the details. Those 1441 images provide all the evidence needed to illustrate and understand the three dimensional structure of that soccer ball.…

The following guest post was written by Wei-Qiang Han, a materials scientist working at Brookhaven Lab’s Center for Functional Nanomaterials. Wei-Qiang Han With gasoline prices still hovering near $4 per gallon, scientists at Brookhaven Lab’s Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN) are helping to develop electric vehicles capable of driving hundreds of miles on a single…

Nanomaterials Revealed

Thanks to the smart nano detectives out there who took a stab at solving yesterday’s picture puzzle. Mystery image #1, aka the “Nano Vortex,” shows the different magnetization directions of an arrangement of nickel and nickel oxide. Captured by Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN) scientist Yimei Zhu, this photo reveals the local distribution of electromagnetic…

Name That Nanomaterial

It’s time for a little fun. Well, that is, if you consider marveling at modern-art-esque images of extremely small (i.e. on the order of billionths of a meter) materials fun. I do, so I’ll assume I’m not alone here. Take a gander at these two nano images produced at Brookhaven. What are they? Why don’t…

A little more than one year ago, on the day of its groundbreaking ceremony, the National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II) construction site was nothing more than a whole lot of dirt. Today, it’s…well, take a look for yourself.