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MRI, on a molecular scale

Researchers develop system that could one day peer into the atomic structure of individual molecules

23-04-2014

For decades, scientists have used techniques like X-ray crystallography and nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (NMR) to gain invaluable insight into the atomic structure of molecules, but such efforts have long been hampered by the fact that they demand large quantities of a specific molecule and ...

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Trees go high-tech

Process turns cellulose into energy storage devices

09-04-2014

Based on a fundamental chemical discovery by scientists at Oregon State University, it appears that trees may soon play a major role in making high-tech energy storage devices. OSU chemists have found that cellulose – the most abundant organic polymer on Earth and a key component of trees – can ...

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Why food quality will suffer with rising CO2

08-04-2014

For the first time, a field test has demonstrated that elevated levels of carbon dioxide inhibit plants' assimilation of nitrate into proteins, indicating that the nutritional quality of food crops is at risk as climate change intensifies. Findings from this wheat field-test study, led by a UC ...

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How electrodes charge and discharge

Analysis probes reactions in porous battery electrodes for the first time

07-04-2014

The electrochemical reactions inside the porous electrodes of batteries and fuel cells have been described by theorists, but never measured directly. Now, a team at MIT has figured out a way to measure the fundamental charge transfer rate — finding some significant surprises. The study found that ...

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Next generation of 2D materials

07-04-2014

As the properties and applications of graphene continue to be explored in laboratories all over the world, a growing number of researchers are looking beyond the one-atom-thick layer of carbon for alternative materials that exhibit similarly captivating properties. One of these materials is ...

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Tiny power generator runs on spit

07-04-2014

Saliva-powered micro-sized microbial fuel cells can produce minute amounts of energy sufficient to run on-chip applications, according to an international team of engineers. Bruce E. Logan, Evan Pugh Professor and Kappe Professor of Environmental Engineering, Penn State, credited the idea to ...

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Ancient whodunit may be solved: The microbes did it!

Methane-producing microbes may be responsible for the largest mass extinction in Earth's history

02-04-2014

Evidence left at the crime scene is abundant and global: Fossil remains show that sometime around 252 million years ago, about 90 percent of all species on Earth were suddenly wiped out — by far the largest of this planet's five known mass extinctions. But pinpointing the culprit has been ...

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Biofuel alternative for high-energy rocket fuel

28-03-2014

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology and the Joint BioEnergy Institute have engineered a bacterium to synthesize pinene, a hydrocarbon produced by trees that could potentially replace high-energy fuels, such as JP-10, in missiles and other aerospace applications. With improvements ...

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Potential way to make graphene superconducting

SLAC, Stanford study identifies long-sought path toward engineering materials for super-efficient nanoelectronics

24-03-2014

Scientists at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University have discovered a potential way to make graphene – a single layer of carbon atoms with great promise for future electronics – superconducting, a state in which it would carry electricity with 100 ...

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A better way to make unnatural amino acids

The findings have potential applications in cancer, infectious disease, Alzheimer's drugs

17-03-2014

Chemists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have devised a greatly improved technique for making amino acids not found in nature. These "unnatural" amino acids traditionally have been very difficult to synthesize, but are sought after by the pharmaceutical industry for their potential ...

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