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Scientists home in on lithium battery safety flaws


Scientists at Cambridge have developed a simple, accurate way of "seeing" chemistry in action inside a lithium-ion battery. By helping them understand how these batteries behave under different conditions the new method – which involves Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy – could help ...


MIT researchers make carbon nanotubes without metal catalyst

Oxides, as well as metals, seem to be able to sprout carbon nanotubes


Carbon nanotubes - tiny, rolled-up tubes of graphite - promise to add speed to electronic circuits and strength to materials like carbon composites, used in airplanes and racecars. A major problem, however, is that the metals used to grow nanotubes react unfavorably with materials found in ...


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Marine natural product synthesis


Ian Paterson and Natalie Miller from Cambridge University have developed an 18 step synthesis, which incorporates a Jacobsen hetero Diels-Alder reaction as the key step. This produces the marine product in an overall 5.8% yield. Neopeltolide is a structurally complex marine natural product that ...


Scientists sneak a peek under the veil of superconductivity


How does a magnet that cannot transport electricity transform into a superconductor that is a perfect conductor of electricity? That question has baffled physics researchers for more than 20 years. Solving this mystery has become somewhat of a quest because the answer holds immense potential for ...


Room temperature superconductivity

One step closer to the Holy Grail of physics


Scientists at the University of Cambridge have for the first time identified a key component to unravelling the mystery of room temperature superconductivity, according to a paper published in current edition of the scientific journal Nature. The quest for room temperature superconductivity has ...


Major advances made in predicting crystal structures

Findings of international test have implications for pharmaceutical development


Researchers have met the challenge of predicting the crystal structures of small organic molecules by computational methods without experimental input, a goal that has been described as the Holy Grail of crystallography. This breakthrough was achieved in the 4th blind test of crystal structure ...


Natural Insecticide Re-Created in the Lab

Success after 22 years of research: synthesis of azadirachtin


Twenty-two years of dedicated research has finally resulted in success: In the journal Angewandte Chemie, a British team headed by Steven V. Ley at the University of Cambridge reports the first synthesis of azadirachtin, a natural compound that stops predatory insects from feeding. Plants have a ...


Organic sulfur-nitrogen radical demonstrates ferromagnetism at low temperatures


The word magnet usually brings to mind a piece of metal. For many years scientists did not believe that (ferro)magnetic materials not containing metal atoms could exist. The first organic ferromagnet was discovered in the early 1990's, and more followed. However, all these materials only ...


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