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Using bacteria to make electrodes

05-Dec-2013

Scientists in France have produced hematite using a bacterial pathway for use as an electrode material in Li-ion technologies. Currently, most commercial electrode materials for Li-ion technologies are prepared using the ceramic method, which requires long heating periods at high temperatures ...

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Marine plant replacement for platinum in solar cells

05-Dec-2013

An international research team has shown that that the power conversion efficiency of sea tangle extract is comparable to platinum in solar cell electrodes. Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) are quickly becoming a widespread and affordable alternative to photovoltaic solar cells. The electrode ...

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A jelly-based fuel cell

05-Dec-2013

An international team of researchers has used gelatin as their starting material to make a fuel cell catalyst. The team used gelatin to make doped-carbon electrocatalysts that could be a potential replacement for platinum in fuel cells. To make the catalyst, they mixed iron and magnesium into ...

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Moving the MRI goalposts

28-Nov-2013

Scientists in the UK have developed a new class of MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) agents that promise to deliver clearer images more quickly. Chemical shifts from proton NMR normally fall between 0-12ppm, but water and fat resonate at 4.7 and 1.3ppm respectively, causing noise that can overlap ...

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Big data reveals clues for energy technology

28-Nov-2013

The largest quantum chemical investigation to date has revealed chemical structures with promising properties for advanced solar cells. Scientists at Harvard University in the United States performed 150 million theoretical calculations to reveal results that could cut down the time and cost of ...

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Measuring iron on a smartphone

28-Nov-2013

Spanish scientists have developed a way to quantitatively measure the amount of iron in a solution using a smartphone. Traditional techniques for quantifying iron levels require samples to be isolated and tested in the laboratory by trained specialists. This new approach returns a result in just ...

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Harvesting solar energy with man-made leaves

06-Nov-2013

Scientists in Japan have developed a two-step artificial photosynthetic process that mimic’s nature’s efficient method for harvesting energy from sunlight by using a system of a large number of artificial leaves, as plants do. The researchers used a large number of light absorbers to relay ...

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Improving solar cell efficiency by optical design

06-Nov-2013

Scientists in the United States have designed a Cu2ZnSn(S, Se)4 (CZTSSe) solar cell with the greatest efficiency to date using an optical-design approach. The researchers describe a new optical architecture for CZTSSe photovoltaic devices that improves the record power-conversion efficiency for ...

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Melting sea ice releases trapped pollutants

30-Oct-2013

Scientists in Denmark have found evidence that melting sea ice is causing the re-emission of banned pesticides, presenting a further potential consequence of global warming. Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) have been banned or restricted in most countries because of their tendency to ...

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Solar-powered electrochemistry reduces reagent waste in synthetic organic reactions

30-Oct-2013

Scientists in the United States have combined electrochemistry with synthetic organic chemistry to perform chemical oxidations that consume only sunlight and produce only hydrogen as a reduction product to reduce reagent waste. The researchers connected a photovoltaic cell to the reaction flask, ...

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