Top 10 Science and Technology Inventions for the Week of November 29, 2019

01. Novel memory device can be written on and read out optically or electrically 02. Laser combo opens up futuristic terahertz technology 03. Molecular eraser enables better data storage and computers for AI 04. Toward more efficient computing, with magnetic waves 05. Sniffing Out Errors 06. Black silicon can help detect explosives 07. A Graphene Waveguide For Electrons 08. NASA rockets study why tech goes haywire near poles 09. Gene Editors Could Find New Use as Rapid Detectors of Pathogenic Threats 10. New technology developed to improve forecasting of Earthquakes, Tsunamis And others… How Brexit Will Affect Europe’s Research InfrastructureMetal-organic […]

A Graphene Waveguide For Electrons

American physical Society  November 22, 2019 An electron carrying information in its quantum state and acting according to its wave nature can travel though a waveguide, but if multiple modes are available, then the electron can switch between them and lose information. An international team of researchers (USA – MIT, Japan, France) designed a device that includes a graphene flake sandwiched between two insulating sheets. On top of this structure sits a single carbon nanotube. A voltage applied across the CNT induces an electrostatic potential shaped like a rain gutter that extends down into the flake. The potential traps the […]

Black silicon can help detect explosives

EurekAlert  November 27, 2019 Detection of nitroaromatic compounds (NAC) vapors is challenging owing to their low vapor pressure and relatively weak sensitivity of the existing detection techniques. An international team of researchers (Russia, Australia) proposes a novel concept to design fluorescence (FL) detection platforms based on chemical functionalization of nanotextured dielectric surfaces exhibiting resonant light absorption, trapping, and localization effects. They demonstrated the sensor with selective FL-quenching response from monolayers of carbazole moieties covalently bonded to a spiky silicon surface, “black” silicon. It provided unprecedented ppt (10–12) range limits of detection for several NAC vapors. The easy-to-implement scalable fabrication procedure […]

Gene Editors Could Find New Use as Rapid Detectors of Pathogenic Threats

DARPA News  November 15, 2019 The overarching goal of Detect It with Gene Editing Technologies (DIGET) is to provide comprehensive, specific, and trusted information about health threats to medical decision-makers within minutes, even in far-flung regions of the globe, to prevent the spread of disease, enable timely deployment of countermeasures, and improve the standard of care after diagnosis. The DIGET vision incorporates two devices: a handheld, disposable point-of-need device that screens samples for at least 10 pathogens or host biomarkers at once, combined with a massively multiplexed detection platform capable of screening clinical and environmental samples for more than 1,000 […]

How Brexit Will Affect Europe’s Research Infrastructure

EurekAlert  November 22, 2019 Britain’s likely exit from the EU will probably damage scientific research both in the UK and the EU for decades to come, according to researchers in the UK and the Royal Society. The impact manifests most clearly in two ways, reluctance to engage UK partners for EU research projects and EU nationals are less likely to want to apply for short-term jobs in the UK. An international workforce that can migrate across international borders is the life blood of science and research that could seriously damage UK science and technology. The situation becomes further muddied by […]

Laser combo opens up futuristic terahertz technology

Physics World  November 25, 2019 The terahertz region of the electromagnetic spectrum has been the least utilized owing to inadequacies of available sources. A team of researchers in the US (Harvard University, MIT, Duke University) has created a compact, widely frequency-tunable, extremely bright source of terahertz radiation: a gas-phase molecular laser based on rotational population inversions optically pumped by a quantum cascade laser. By identifying the essential parameters that determine the suitability of a molecule for a terahertz laser, almost any rotational transition of almost any molecular gas can be made to lase. Nitrous oxide is used to illustrate the […]

Metal-organic framework captures and converts toxic air pollutant into industrial chemical

Nanowerk  November 23, 2019 An international team of researchers (UK, USA – Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) has developed an MOF, denoted as MFM-520, that can capture atmospheric nitrogen dioxide at ambient pressures and temperatures—even at low concentrations and during flow—in the presence of moisture, sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide. Despite the highly reactive nature of the pollutant, MFM-520 proved capable of being fully regenerated multiple times by degassing or by treatment with water from the air—a process that also converts nitrogen dioxide into nitric acid. The highest rate of NO2 uptake by this material occurs at […]

Molecular eraser enables better data storage and computers for AI

EurekAlert  November 27, 2019 The bottom up approaches for atomic and molecular electronics, quantum computation, and data storage, all rely on a well-developed understanding of materials at the atomic scale. Researchers in Canada have developed a scanning tunneling microscope (STM) charge characterization technique which reduces the influence of the typically perturbative STM tip field for this purpose. Using the technique, they observed single molecule binding events to atomically defined reactive sites. They developed a simplified error correction tool for automated hydrogen lithography and incorporated the molecular repassivation technique as the primary rewriting mechanism in ultra-dense atomic data storage designs. The […]

NASA rockets study why tech goes haywire near poles

Phys.org  November 26, 2019 Most of Earth is shielded from the solar wind but right near the poles the magnetic field becomes a funnel, known as cusp, where the solar wind can get all the way down to the atmosphere disrupting satellites and radio and GPS signals. Beginning Nov. 25, 2019, three new NASA-supported missions will launch into the northern polar cusp, aiming to improve the technology affected by it. The three missions are all part of the Grand Challenge Initiative. Cusp is a series of nine sounding rocket missions exploring the polar cusp capturing the strange phenomena inside the […]

Nine climate tipping points now ‘active,’ warn scientists

Science Daily  November 27, 2019 According to an international team of researchers (UK, Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Australia) the evidence from tipping points alone suggests that we are in a state of planetary emergency: both the risk and urgency of the situation are acute. They summarize evidence on the threat of exceeding tipping points, such as the loss of the Amazon rainforest or the West Antarctic ice sheet, identify knowledge gaps and suggest how these should be plugged. They explore the effects of such large-scale changes, how quickly they might unfold and whether we still have any control over them. According […]