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A new spin to engineer better absorptive materials

15-Nov-2017

A team of University of Illinois bioengineers has taken a new look at an old tool to help characterize a class of materials called metal organic frameworks - MOFs for short. MOFs are used to detect, purify and store gases, and could help solve some of the world's most challenging energy, ...

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Electrostatic force takes charge in bioinspired polymers

06-Nov-2017

Researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst have taken the first steps toward gaining control over the self-assembly of synthetic materials in the same way that biology forms natural polymers. This advance could prove useful in designing new bioinspired, ...

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A spectroscopic 'science camera' system for smartphones

15-Sep-2017

The latest versions of most smartphones contain at least two and sometimes three built-in cameras. Researchers at the University of Illinois would like to sell mobile device manufactures on the idea of adding yet another image sensor as a built-in capability for health diagnostic, environmental ...

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Flying with fuel from sugarcane

A new promising biofuel feedstock

13-Sep-2017

A Boeing 747 burns one gallon of jet fuel each second. A recent analysis from researchers at the University of Illinois estimate that this aircraft could fly for 10 hours on bio-jet fuel produced on 54 acres of specially engineered sugarcane. Plants Engineered to Replace Oil in Sugarcane and ...

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Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

18-Aug-2017

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the ...

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New technique improves optical fiber communication

09-Aug-2017

Energy loss due to scattering from material defects is known to set limits on the performance of nearly all technologies that we employ for communications, timing, and navigation. In micro-mechanical gyroscopes and accelerometers, such as those commonly found in cellphones today, microstructural ...

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Name that Scotch

Colorimetric recognition of aldehydes and ketones

25-Jul-2017

Vodka tastes different from brandy, and connoisseurs can distinguish among different brands of whiskeys. The flavors of spirits result from a complex bouquet of volatile compounds. New colorimetric sensor arrays on disposable test-strips read by hand-held devices allow for their rapid, ...

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Metal-ion catalysts and hydrogen peroxide could green up plastics production

07-Jun-2017

Researchers at the University of Illinois are contributing to the development of more environmentally friendly catalysts for the production of plastic and resin precursors that are often derived from fossil fuels. The key to their technique comes from recognizing the unique physical and chemical ...

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Electroplating delivers high-energy, high-power batteries

16-May-2017

The process that makes gold-plated jewelry or chrome car accents is now making powerful lithium-ion batteries. Researchers at the University of Illinois, Xerion Advanced Battery Corporation and Nanjing University in China developed a method for electroplating lithium-ion battery cathodes, ...

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New understanding of superconductor's 'normal' state may help solve longstanding puzzle

15-May-2017

Since the discovery two decades ago of the unconventional topological superconductor Sr2RuO4, scientists have extensively investigated its properties at temperatures below its 1°K critical temperature (Tc), at which a phase transition from a metal to superconducting state occurs. Now experiments ...

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