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Nanomaterial from the Middle Ages

Unlocking the secrets of Zwischgold

12-Oct-2022

To gild sculptures in the late Middle Ages, artists often applied ultra-thin gold foil supported by a silver base layer. For the first time, scientists at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have managed to produce nanoscale 3D images of this material, known as Zwischgold. The pictures show this was ...

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Making it easier to differentiate mirror-image molecules

Researchers have shown that mirror-image substances – so-called enantiomers – can be better distinguished using helical X-ray light

06-Jul-2022

Using a new method, scientists are better able to distinguish between mirror-image substances. This is important amongst others in drug development, because the two variants can cause completely different effects in the human body. Researchers from Paul Scherrer Institute PSI, EPF Lausanne ...

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Light amplification accelerates chemical reactions in aerosols

Temporal sequence of photochemical reaction in individual aerosol particles observed with high resolution

21-Apr-2022

Aerosols in the atmosphere react to incident sunlight. This light is amplified in the interior of the aerosol droplets and particles, accelerating reactions. ETH researchers have now been able to demonstrate and quantify this effect and recommend factoring it into future climate models. Liquid ...

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A look into the magnetic future

Researchers at PSI and ETH Zurich have observed for the first time how tiny magnets in a special layout align themselves solely as a result of temperature changes

06-Apr-2022

This view into processes that take place within so-​called artificial spin ice could play an important role in the development of novel high-​performance computers. When water freezes to form ice, the water molecules, with their hydrogen and oxygen atoms, arrange themselves in a complex ...

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Novel X-ray lens facilitates glimpse into the nanoworld

Together with spin-off XRnanotech, PSI plans to market the new lens

16-Mar-2022

PSI scientists have developed a ground-breaking achromatic lens for X-rays. This allows the X-ray beams to be accurately focused on a single point even if they have different wavelengths. The new lens will make it much easier to study nanostructures using X-rays, according to a paper just ...

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Electron conspiracy in a Japanese lattice pattern: kagome metals baffle science

Toward a new kind of superconductivity

15-Feb-2022

In the past four years scientists have discovered metals whose crystal structure mimics that of a traditional Japanese woven bamboo pattern: kagome metals. The international research activity in this new direction of quantum materials has recently reached a new climax: an international team of ...

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Blue hydrogen can help protect the climate

A high technology standard is key

06-Dec-2021

An international group of researchers led by the Paul Scherrer Institute and the Heriot-Watt University has carried out in-depth analyses of the climate impact of blue hydrogen. This is produced from natural gas, with the CO2 resulting from the process captured and stored. The study, published in ...

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New active substance against parasites

22-Oct-2021

Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have identified a chemical compound that is probably suitable as an active agent against several single-cell parasites. These include the pathogens that cause malaria and toxoplasmosis. The target of the promising substance is the protein tubulin: it ...

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How catalysts age

"Our new, detailed results could help industrial companies optimise their catalysts and make them more durable"

11-Jun-2021

PSI researchers have developed a new tomography method with which they can measure chemical properties inside catalyst materials in 3D extremely precisely and faster than before. The application is equally important for science and industry. The material group of vanadium phosphorus oxides (VPOs) ...

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Uniquely sharp X-ray view

For the first time, it is possible to look inside materials with a resolution down to individual atoms

26-Apr-2021

Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have succeeded for the first time in looking inside materials using the method of transient grating spectroscopy with ultrafast X-rays at SwissFEL. The experiment at PSI is a milestone in observing processes in the world of atoms. The structures on ...

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