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New algorithm finds the optimal bond breaking point for single molecules

02-Aug-2017

Recent developments in atomic-force microscopy have enabled researchers to apply mechanical forces to individual molecules to induce chemical reactions. A research team from Spain and Germany has now developed a first-of-its-kind algorithm that determines the minimal force it takes to reach the ...

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Spiders spin unique phononic material

27-Jul-2016

New discoveries about spider silk could inspire novel materials to manipulate sound and heat in the same way semiconducting circuits manipulate electrons, according to scientists at Rice University, in Europe and in Singapore. A paper looks at the microscopic structure of spider silk and reveals ...

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The spectacular diversity of nanoporous crystals

07-Jan-2016

Scientists from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the Universität Leipzig have discovered a unique behavior in the transport of molecules in nanoporous materials. They disproved the validity of a decades-old unquestioned assumption and demonstrated that each individual nanoporous crystal behaves ...

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Quantum physics on tap

Nano-sized faucet offers experimental support for longstanding quantum theory

20-May-2015

We all know intuitively that normal liquids flow more quickly as the channel containing them tightens. Think of a river flowing through narrow rapids. But what if a pipe were so amazingly tiny that only a few atoms of superfluid helium could squeeze through its opening at once? According to a ...

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Cloud towers above the Amazon

09-Oct-2014

"Please buckle up. We are flying through an area with strong turbulence.” Some passengers might be petrified by such an announcement, but the atmosphere and climate researchers from Germany, Brazil and Israel were delighted last month to hear these words. Within the framework of a large-scale ...

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Breaking a chemical bond

06-Aug-2014

A new theory for the breaking of (bio-)chemical bonds under load may help to predict the strength and performance of synthetic nanostructures and proteins, on a molecular level. The fundamental question how a molecular bond breaks is of interest in many fields of science and has been studied ...

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The Smell of Iron

"Metallic" odor of iron, iron-containing water, and blood derives from the decomposition of skin oil

20-Oct-2006

Where does the strange but typical "metallic" smell come from when we touch iron objects such as tools, utensils, railings, or coins? "The smell of iron upon contact with skin is ironically a type of human body odor," states Dietmar Glindemann. "That we are smelling the metal itself is actually ...

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