Tag Archives: semiconductor

A Semiconductor That Can Beat the Heat

Berkeley Lab, UC Berkeley scientists discover unique thermoelectric properties in cesium tin iodide

A newly discovered collective rattling effect in a type of crystalline semiconductor blocks most heat transfer while preserving high electrical conductivity – a rare pairing that scientists say could reduce heat buildup in electronic devices and turbine engines, among other possible applications. (more…)

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‘Photon glue’ enables a new quantum mechanical state

ANN ARBOR — Like a spring connecting two swings, light can act as photon glue that binds together the quantum mechanical properties of two vastly different materials.

The effect could harness the most useful characteristics from each material for hybrid solar cells and high efficiency lighting, among other applications. (more…)

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Invention jet prints nanostructures with self-assembling material

A multi-institutional team of engineers has developed a new approach to the fabrication of nanostructures for the semiconductor and magnetic storage industries. This approach combines top-down advanced ink-jet printing technology with a bottom-up approach that involves self-assembling block copolymers, a type of material that can spontaneously form ultrafine structures.

The team, consisting of nine researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Chicago and Hanyang University in Korea, was able to increase the resolution of their intricate structure fabrication from approximately 200 nanometers to approximately 15 nanometers. A nanometer is a billionth of a meter, the width of a double-stranded DNA molecule. (more…)

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A tangle of talents untangles neurons

Brown’s growing programs in brain science and engineering come together in the lab of Diane Hoffman-Kim. In a recent paper, her group employed techniques ranging from semiconductor-style circuit patterning to rat cell culture to optimize the growth of nerve cells for applications such as reconstructive surgery.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Two wrongs don’t make a right, they say, but here’s how one tangle can straighten out another.

Diane Hoffman-Kim, associate professor of medicine in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Physiology, and Biotechnology, is an affiliate of both Brown’s Center for Biomedical Engineering and the Brown Institute for Brain Science. Every thread of expertise woven through those multidisciplinary titles mattered in the Hoffman-Kim lab’s most recent paper, led by graduate student Cristina Lopez-Fagundo. (more…)

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Researchers Create Semiconductor ‘Nano-Shish-Kebabs’ With Potential for 3-D Technologies

Researchers at North Carolina State University have developed a new type of nanoscale structure that resembles a “nano-shish-kebab,” consisting of multiple two-dimensional nanosheets that appear to be impaled upon a one-dimensional nanowire. However, the nanowire and nanosheets are actually a single, three-dimensional structure consisting of a seamless series of germanium sulfide (GeS) crystals. The structure holds promise for use in the creation of new, three-dimensional (3-D) technologies.

The researchers believe this is the first engineered nanomaterial to combine one-dimensional and two-dimensional structures in which all of the components have a shared crystalline structure. (more…)

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Researchers Create ‘Nanoflowers’ for Energy Storage, Solar Cells

Researchers from North Carolina State University have created flower-like structures out of germanium sulfide (GeS) – a semiconductor material – that have extremely thin petals with an enormous surface area. The GeS flower holds promise for next-generation energy storage devices and solar cells.

“Creating these GeS nanoflowers is exciting because it gives us a huge surface area in a small amount of space,” says Dr. Linyou Cao, an assistant professor of materials science and engineering at NC State and co-author of a paper on the research. “This could significantly increase the capacity of lithium-ion batteries, for instance, since the thinner structure with larger surface area can hold more lithium ions. By the same token, this GeS flower structure could lead to increased capacity for supercapacitors, which are also used for energy storage.” (more…)

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Questions for Rashid Zia: Brown to Lead Multi-University Quantum Metamaterials Research

Through a new Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) awarded by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Brown will lead an effort to study new optical materials and their interactions with light at the quantum scale. The initiative, which includes six other top universities, will receive $4.5 million over three years, with a possible two-year extension.

Harnessing the power of light at the quantum scale could clear the way for superfast optical microprocessors, high-capacity optical memory, securely encrypted communication, and untold other technologies. But before any of these potential applications sees the light of day, substantial obstacles must be overcome — not the least of which is the fact that the wavelength of light is larger than quantum-scale objects, limiting the range of possible light-matter interactions. (more…)

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Synchronized Lasers Measure How Light Changes Matter

Berkeley Lab scientists and their colleagues have successfully probed the effects of light at the atomic scale by mixing x-ray and optical light waves at the Linac Coherent Light Source

Light changes matter in ways that shape our world. Photons trigger changes in proteins in the eye to enable vision; sunlight splits water into hydrogen and oxygen and creates chemicals through photosynthesis; light causes electrons to flow in the semiconductors that make up solar cells; and new devices for consumers, industry, and medicine operate with photons instead of electrons. But directly measuring how light manipulates matter on the atomic scale has never been possible, until now.

An international team of scientists led by Thornton Glover of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) used the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory to mix a pulse of superbright x-rays with a pulse of lower frequency, “optical” light from an ordinary laser. By aiming the combined pulses at a diamond sample, the team was able to measure the optical manipulation of chemical bonds in the crystal directly, on the scale of individual atoms. (more…)

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