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New solar mini-refinery

Carbon-neutral fuel made from sunlight and air: Two spin-offs already founded

17-Jun-2019

Researchers from ETH Zurich have developed a novel technology that produces liquid hydrocarbon fuels exclusively from sunlight and air. For the first time worldwide they demonstrate the entire thermochemical process chain under real field conditions. The new solar mini-refinery is located on the ...

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Recycling carbon dioxide from the ocean

Floating power plants

11-Jun-2019

Paper, tin cans, glass - the world recycles as much as possible. So why not declare the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) a recycling product as well? Liquid fuels based on carbon will continue to play an important role in the future - despite international efforts to reduce them. So it seems ...

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Exposing modern forgers

Chemical processes extend radiocarbon dating

06-Jun-2019

Researchers at ETH Zurich have developed a process that can provide conclusive evidence with regard to modern fakes of paintings, even in cases where the forger used old materials. This verification process requires less than 200 micrograms of paint. Art forgeries have been around since time ...

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Efficient removal of problem substances

Many wastewater treatment plants do not completely remove chemical substances from wastewater.

21-May-2019

Microcontaminants place a considerable burden on our water courses, but removing them from wastewater requires considerable technical resources. Now, ETH researchers have developed an approach that allows the efficient removal of these problematic substances. In our everyday lives, we all use a ...

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When sand behaves like oil

08-May-2019

Sand, coffee grounds and rice behave very differently than water or oil, but under certain conditions they will suddenly exhibit astonishing similarities. Scientists have found a way to better understand the behaviour of granular materials. Sand, rice and coffee are all examples of granular ...

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Cooling with light

07-May-2019

ETH researchers have cooled a nanoparticle to a record low temperature, thanks to a sophisticated experimental set-up that uses scattered laser light for cooling. Until now, no one has ever cooled a nanoparticle to such low temperatures in a photon cage: Dominik Windey and René Reimann – a ...

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Water that never freezes

12-Apr-2019

Can water reach minus 263 degrees Celsius without turning into ice? Yes it can, say researchers from ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich, if it is confined in nanometre-scale lipid channels. Making ice cubes is a simple process: you take a plastic ice-cube tray like you’d find in most ...

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A special phenomenon in magnets

A compass pointing West

02-Apr-2019

Researchers from the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI in Villigen and the ETH Zurich have discovered a special phenomenon in magnets. This phenomenon takes place at the nanoscale and enables magnets to be assembled in unusual configurations, which could also be useful for computer technology and data ...

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Ocean sink for man-made CO2 measured

18-Mar-2019

An international research project led by scientists from ETH Zurich has determined the amount of man-made CO2 emissions taken up by the ocean between 1994 and 2007. Not all of the CO2 generated during the combustion of fossil fuels remains in the atmosphere and contributes to global warming. The ...

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Nanotechnology and sunlight clear the way for better visibility

07-Mar-2019

A new coating developed by ETH researchers prevents fogging on transparent surfaces. Rather than using electricity, the coating relies on sunlight to heat the surface. Anyone who skis, wears glasses, uses a camera or drives a car is familiar with the problem: if you come into a humid environment ...

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