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New NIST metamaterial gives light a one-way ticket

07-Jul-2014

The light-warping structures known as metamaterials have a new trick in their ever-expanding repertoire. Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have built a silver, glass and chromium nanostructure that can all but stop visible light cold in one direction while ...

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Don't blink! NIST studies why quantum dots suffer from 'fluorescence intermittency'

30-May-2014

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), working in collaboration with the Naval Research Laboratory, have found that a particular species of quantum dots that weren't commonly thought to blink, do. So what? Well, although the blinks are short—on the order of ...

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From separation to transformation: Metal-organic framework shows new talent

28-May-2014

This gift from science just keeps on giving. Measurements taken at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) show why a material already known to be good at separating components of natural gas also can do something trickier: catalysis. The discovery is a rare example of a ...

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New microscope sees what others can't

12-May-2014

Microscopes don't exactly lie, but their limitations affect the truths they can tell. For example, scanning electron microscopes (SEMs) simply can't see materials that don't conduct electricity very well, and their high energies can actually damage some types of samples. In an effort to extract a ...

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A new US time standard

NIST-F2 atomic clock

07-Apr-2014

The U.S. Department of Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has officially launched a new atomic clock, called NIST-F2, to serve as a new U.S. civilian time and frequency standard, along with the current NIST-F1 standard. NIST-F2 would neither gain nor lose one second ...

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Simple microfluidic devices now have valves

04-Apr-2014

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have added yet another innovation—miniature valves—to their ever-growing collection of inexpensive, easy-to-manufacture and highly efficient microfluidic devices made from plastic films and double-sided tape. Traditionally, ...

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'Quantum droplet' in semiconductor

28-Feb-2014

JILA physicists used an ultrafast laser and help from German theorists to discover a new semiconductor quasiparticle—a handful of smaller particles that briefly condense into a liquid-like droplet. Quasiparticles are composites of smaller particles that can be created inside solid materials and ...

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Microanalysis technique makes the most of small nanoparticle samples

26-Feb-2014

Researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have demonstrated that they can make sensitive chemical analyses of minute samples of nanoparticles by, essentially, roasting them on top of a quartz crystal. The NIST-developed ...

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Clever technology decodes more information from single photons

17-Feb-2014

It's not quite Star Trek communications—yet. But long-distance communications in space may be easier now that researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have designed a clever detector array that can extract more information than ...

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Ways to improve common furniture fire test

12-Feb-2014

The bench-scale test widely used to evaluate whether a burning cigarette will ignite upholstered furniture may underestimate the tendency of component materials to smolder when these materials are used in sofas and chairs supported by springs or cloth, National Institute of Standards and ...

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