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Rare metals from e-waste

What happens to our ressources?

14-Jan-2019

This year, beautifully wrapped laptops, mobile phones or even new TV sets lay under numerous Christmas trees. They are enthusiastically put into use – and the old electronic devices are disposed of. The e-waste contains resources such as neodymium, indium and gold. What happens to the valuable ...

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A burst of ”synchronous” light

Sandwich structure of nanocrystals as quantum light source

09-Nov-2018

Excited photo-emitters can cooperate and radiate simultaneously, a phenomenon called superfluorescence. Researchers from Empa and ETH Zurich, together with colleagues from IBM Research Zurich, have recently been able to create this effect with long-range ordered nanocrystal superlattices. This ...

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Reinforcement of structures with Memory Steel

24-Oct-2018

So far, the steel reinforcements in concrete structures are mostly prestressed hydraulically. This requires ducts for guiding the tension cables, anchors for force transfer and oil-filled hydraulic jacks. The space requirements of all these apparatuses created the geometric framework conditions ...

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Breakthrough in nanoresearch: Quantum chains in graphene nanoribbons

13-Aug-2018

Empa researchers, together with researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in Mainz and other partners, have achieved a breakthrough that could in future be used for precise nanotransistors or - in the distant future - possibly even quantum computers, as the team reports in ...

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An unlikely marriage among oxides

21-Jun-2018

Sebastian Siol is looking for new materials with unusual properties that were so far not accessible in experiments. To do this, he connects partners who don't really fit together: One partner forces the other into a state that would not be possible without the unlikely pairing. Siol also makes ...

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New materials for sustainable, low-cost batteries

02-May-2018

A new conductor material and a new electrode material could pave the way for inexpensive batteries and therefore the large-scale storage of renewable energies. The energy transition depends on technologies that allow the inexpensive temporary storage of electricity from renewable sources. A ...

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A ski jacket that actively gets rid of sweat

Electro-osmotic textiles for athletes

31-Jan-2018

To keep the body warm and dry during winter sports, high-performance clothing is a must. The demands on these textiles are high, as a person sweats up to one liter per hour on his upper body alone when skiing. A new technology, co-developed by a team of Empa scientists, helps athletes sweating by ...

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A water-based, rechargeable battery

Inexpensive and stable

11-Jan-2018

Water could form the basis for future, particularly inexpensive rechargeable batteries. Empa researchers have succeeded in doubling the electrochemical stability of water with a special saline solution. This takes us one step closer to using the technology commercially. In the quest to find ...

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A thermometer for the oceans

Measurement of noble gases in Antarctic ice cores

08-Jan-2018

The average sea temperature is an essential parameter of the global climate – but it is very difficult to measure. At least until now, because an international team of researchers including Empa scientists have now developed a novel method using the concentration of noble gases in the eternal ...

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Batteries with better performance and improved safety

28-Nov-2017

Phones, laptops, electric cars - batteries are everywhere. And to meet the expectations of today's consumers, these batteries are increasin­gly lighter, more powerful and designed to last longer. Currently the core technology for these applications is lithium ion batteries. But the technology is ...

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