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Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

08-Feb-2017

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being compressed. The plant's hardiness comes from a combination of its hollow, tubular macrostructure and porous microstructure. These ...

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Metallic hydrogen, once theory, becomes reality

27-Jan-2017

Nearly a century after it was theorized, Harvard scientists have succeeded in creating the rarest - and potentially one of the most valuable - materials on the planet. The material - atomic metallic hydrogen - was created by Thomas D. Cabot Professor of the Natural Sciences Isaac Silvera and ...

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The world’s tiniest radio

19-Dec-2016

Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have made the world’s smallest radio receiver, built out of an assembly of atomic-scale defects in pink diamonds. This tiny radio, whose building blocks are the size of two atoms, can withstand ...

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From super to ultra-resolution microscopy

07-Jul-2016

Proteins mostly do not work in isolation but rather make up larger complexes like the molecular machines that enable cells to communicate with each other, move cargo around in their interiors or replicate their DNA. Our ability to observe and track each individual protein within these machines is ...

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Ultrathin, flat lens resolves chirality and color

Multifunctional lens could replace bulky, expensive machines

27-Jun-2016

Many things in the natural world are geometrically chiral, meaning they cannot be superimposed onto their mirror image. Think hands -- right and left hands are mirror images but if you transplanted a right hand onto a left, you'd be in trouble. Certain molecules are chiral, including DNA and ...

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Universe's first life might have been born on carbon planets

09-Jun-2016

Our Earth consists of silicate rocks and an iron core with a thin veneer of water and life. But the first potentially habitable worlds to form might have been very different. New research suggests that planet formation in the early universe might have created carbon planets consisting of ...

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A foldable material that can change size, volume and shape

Researchers design a tunable, self actuated 3-D material

14-Mar-2016

Imagine a house that could fit in a backpack or a wall that could become a window with the flick of a switch. Harvard researchers have designed a new type of foldable material that is versatile, tunable and self actuated. It can change size, volume and shape; it can fold flat to withstand the ...

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Pulling water from thin air

26-Feb-2016

Organisms such as cacti and desert beetles can survive in arid environments because they've evolved mechanisms to collect water from thin air. The Namib desert beetle, for example, collects water droplets on the bumps of its shell while V-shaped cactus spines guide droplets to the plant's ...

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A metal that behaves like water

Researchers describe new behaviors of graphene

15-Feb-2016

Graphene is going to change the world -- or so we've been told. Since its discovery a decade ago, scientists and tech gurus have hailed graphene as the wonder material that could replace silicon in electronics, increase the efficiency of batteries, the durability and conductivity of touch screens ...

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Novel metasurface revolutionizes ubiquitous scientific tool

12-Jan-2016

Scientists rely on polarimeters to make measurements. While ubiquitous, many polarimeters currently in use are slow, bulky and expensive. Now, researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Innovation Center Iceland have built a polarimeter on a ...

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