A flash of ultraviolet light sets off a chain reaction which hardens the whole object. more
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Some surfaces are wetted by water, others are water-repellent. TU Wien (Vienna), KU Leuven and the University of Zürich have discovered a robust surface whose adhesive and wetting properties can be switched using electricity. This remarkable result is featured on the cover of Nature magazine.
To investigate the wetting of the surface, an instrument was built specially for this purpose, in which a liquid drop is brought on the surface through a very thin glass tube. The drop is made bigger and smaller while at the same time its shape is recorded. Whether the drop shape is flat or more rounded depends on the properties of the surface.
Iridium oxide is an excellent catalyst for electrochemical reactions, and is typically used for the production of energy carriers such as hydrogen from water. Now it turns out that research on iridium oxide carried out so far has been based on a wrong basic assumption: The arrangement of th ... more
Small particles can have an angular momentum that points in a certain direction - the spin. This spin can be manipulated by a magnetic field. This principle, for example, is the basic idea behind magnetic resonance imaging as used in hospitals. An international research team has now discove ... more
Electrochemistry is playing an increasingly important role: Whether it is fuel cells, electrolysis or chemical energy storage, chemical reactions controlled by electric current are used. The decisive factor in all these applications is that the reactions are as fast and efficient as possibl ... more