Archive by category | Nanotechnology

First boron ‘buckyball’ could be used to store hydrogen

Clusters of 40 boron atoms form a hollow cage similar to the carbon buckyball

Just in time for the World Cup final, researchers have succeeded in building the first “buckyballs”  made entirely of boron atoms. Unlike true, carbon-based buckyballs, the boron molecules are not shaped exactly like footballs.  But this novel form of boron might lead to new nanomaterials and could find uses in hydrogen storage.  Read more

Kavli Prizes reward cosmic inflation, memory research and imaging

Kavli Prizes reward cosmic inflation, memory research and imaging

The 2014 Kavli Prizes, announced today, were shared among nine scientists for their work on the theory of cosmic inflation, for contributions to the field of nano-optics and for the discovery of specialized brain networks for memory and cognition.  Read more

How to make graphene in a kitchen blender

How to make graphene in a kitchen blender

Don’t try this at home. No really, don’t: it almost certainly won’t work and you won’t be able to use your kitchen blender for food afterwards. But buried in the supplementary information of a research paper published today is a domestic recipe for producing large quantities of clean flakes of graphene.  Read more

Obama launches multibillion-dollar brain-map project

US President Barack Obama today officially launched an ambitious multi-year project to probe the human brain in action. In a preview of his 2014 budget request, expected next week, he said he would ask Congress for about $100 million to get the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative off the ground.  Read more

Letter bomb threat rattles Mexican biotechnology lab

A letter containing explosive material was delivered on 11 February to the Institute of Biotechnology of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) in Morelos. Federal authorities are investigating whether the attempted attack was connected to the chain of letter-bombs sent to Mexican research institutes beginning in 2011.  Read more

Dutch nanoscientists get €51 million to push limits

A new €51 million nanoscience programme in the Netherlands is setting out to identify and re-write the boundaries of nanotechnology. The “NanoFront” project has won the lion’s share – €36m – of a new €167m pot of fundamental science research funding in the Netherlands, one of the country’s largest ever. The two universities behind the project, TU Delft and the University of Leiden, are topping this up with €15m of their own.  Read more

US materials initiative gains momentum

A gathering of industrial and academic leaders has unveiled a  flurry of new projects under the umbrella of the Materials Genome Initiative (MGI), a US government effort to boost progress in advanced materials research.  Read more