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3-D imaging of surface chemistry in confinement

24-Jul-2017

EPFL researchers have developed an optical imaging tool to visualize surface chemistry in real time. They imaged the interfacial chemistry in the microscopically confined geometry of a simple glass micro-capillary. The glass is covered with hydroxyl (-OH) groups that can lose a proton - a ...

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A new tool for discovering nanoporous materials

26-May-2017

Materials classified as "nanoporous" have structures (or "frameworks") with pores up to 100 nm in diameter. These include diverse materials used in different fields from gas separation, catalysis, and even medicine (e.g. activated charcoal). The performance of nanoporous materials depends on both ...

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Water is surprisingly ordered on the nanoscale

26-May-2017

Nanometric-sized water drops are everywhere - in the air as droplets or aerosols, in our bodies as medication, and in the earth, within rocks and oil fields. To understand the behavior of these drops, it is necessary to know how they interact with their hydrophobic environment. This interaction ...

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Light can improve perovskite solar cell performance

02-May-2017

EPFL scientists show how light affects perovskite film formation in solar cells, which is a critical factor in using them for cost-effective and energy-efficient photovoltaics. Perovskites are materials of immense interest in solar energy technology lately, as they promise to bring down the cost ...

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Nanotube film may resolve longevity problem of challenger solar cells

21-Mar-2017

Five years ago, the world started to talk about third-generation solar cells that challenged the traditional silicon cells with a cheaper and simpler manufacturing process that used less energy. Methylammonium lead iodide is a metal-organic material in the perovskite crystal structure that ...

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New discovery: Nanometric imprinting on fiber

26-Jan-2017

Researchers at EPFL's Laboratory of Photonic Materials and Fibre Devices, which is run by Fabien Sorin, have come up with a simple and innovative technique for drawing or imprinting complex, nanometric patterns on hollow polymer fibers. The potential applications of this breakthrough are ...

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ZEISS and EPFL begin long-term research collaboration

01-Dec-2016

ZEISS will support innovative research projects at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, abbr. EPFL). The company will make one million euros available for new research projects in key technology fields such as biomedical research, ...

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Perovskite could lead the next generation of data storage

28-Nov-2016

EPFL scientists have developed a new perovskite material with unique properties that can be used to build next-generation hard drives. As we generate more and more data, we need storage systems, e.g. hard drives, with higher density and efficiency. But this also requires materials whose magnetic ...

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Nanowires as Sensors in New Type of Atomic Force Microscope

19-Oct-2016

A new type of atomic force microscope (AFM) uses nanowires as tiny sensors. Unlike standard AFM, the device with a nanowire sensor enables measurements of both the size and direction of forces. Physicists at the University of Basel and at the EPF Lausanne have described these results in the ...

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Filming light and electrons coupled together as they travel under cover

12-Oct-2016

In a breakthrough for future optical-electronic hybrid computers, scientists at EPFL have developed an ultrafast technique that can track light and electrons as they travel through a nanostructured surface. When light couples to electrons on a surface, their concerted motion can travel as a wave ...

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