First ever completely carbon solar cell captures infrared light

About 40 percent of the solar energy reaching Earth’s surface lies in the near-infrared region of the spectrum — energy that conventional silicon-based solar cells are unable to harness. But a new kind of all-carbon solar cell developed by MIT researchers could tap into that unused energy, opening up the possibility of combination solar cells — incorporating both traditional silicon-based cells and the new all-carbon cells — that could make use of almost the entire range of sunlight’s energy.

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Nano-giraffe leaves opposition behind in Science as Art competition

Out of 150 entries an image of a nano-structure resembling a giraffe has won first prize in the 2012 Science as Art competition of the Materials Research Society. The creator of the picture is Shaahin Amini a Ph.D. student at … Continue reading

New portable measuring tool enables accurate determination of airborne nanoparticle size and distribution

Companies cannot protect workers from nanoparticle exposure unless first they can determine there is a potential problem. To date, the size and cost of existing nanoparticle size measurement instrumentation has been an impediment to routine industrial measurements.

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Revolutionary graphene-based material could change electronics forever

GraphExeterThe most transparent, lightweight and flexible material ever for conducting electricity has been invented by a team from the University of Exeter. Called GraphExeter, the material could revolutionise the creation of wearable electronic devices, such as clothing containing computers, phones and MP3 players.

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The future of our biobased economy? Snail-powered cameras and crab-powered computers

With our conventional energy supplies getting more expensive or less reliable by the day, many researchers aim to find new sources of energy. Sometimes those new energy sources seem a bit too farfetched to make it to general use. We … Continue reading

Silver nanoparticles in our environment may damage testicles and decrease male fertility

Silver nanoparticles cause more damage to testicular cells than titanium dioxide nanoparticles, according to a recent study by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. However, the use of both types may affect testicular cells with possible consequences for fertility.

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The next best thing for solar cells: carbon nanotubes

Carbon in its wide range of shapes and variations seems to be the new material to work with no matter what sector you’re in. Especially the possibilities of carbon in its numerous nano forms seem limitless. While yesterday it was … Continue reading

Improved solar cells and electronics thanks to copper nanowires

As much as we would like it, solar energy still isn’t competitive with fossil fuels, mostly because one of the main materials used in their production is the incredibly expensive metal indium. But that might change in the near future … Continue reading