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Shatterproof screens that save smartphones

Shatterproof screens that save smartphones | Physics | Scoop.it
University of Akron polymer scientists have developed a transparent electrode that could change the face of smartphones, literally, by making their displays shatterproof.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Current touch displays are capacitive and they need transparent conducting layers as part of the structure. ITO (indium tin oxide) glass is the most often used technology for these layers. However, it is costly and brittle, so alternatives are sought. 

 

This article presents a metal-nanowire based alternative film, which has better properties than ITO (better conductivity and flexibility). There are also other alternatives, for example based on carbon nanotubes or polymers. These kind of findings are potentially important since there seems to be big a market to replace ITO.

 

An excellent explanation (5 pages) of the technology of touch screens can be found here: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9231961/How_it_works_The_technology_of_touch_screens

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The Economic Impact of Materials Modelling

The Economic Impact of Materials Modelling | Physics | Scoop.it
This study briefly delineates the types of metrics and methodologies that can be used to quantify the economic impacts of materials modelling from a variety of perspectives including R&D stakeholders, industry stakeholders, and society. The study also investigates how materials modelling impacts the industrial R&D process and outlined the value and potential of materials modelling for industrial research and innovation, competitiveness, and profitability using examples from both the pharmaceutical industry and the molecular modelling industry. Finally, results from a survey of the European manufacturing industry are presented, providing corroboration for the indicators of R&D process improvements found in earlier studies and new data relevant for quantitative economic analyses.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

*Importance of Materials Modelling on R&D and Industry*

 

The open access report discusses how to quantify the impact of materials modelling

* micro- and macroeconomic impact

* what are the proper KPI's to track business improvements

* innovation, cost savings, ROI perspectives

* bottlenecks (missing business cases, wait-and-see approach)

* excerpts from case studies, e.g., quantum mechanical software CASTEP, its use in battery materials prection

 

 

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Science job opportunities at ESRF

Science job opportunities at ESRF | Physics | Scoop.it

Current openings for science positions:

 

- 3 PhD Thesis Students

- 1 Post-Doctoral Fellow

 

Link: http://www.esrf.eu/Jobs/english/recruitment-portal

 

Mikko Hakala's insight:

Link to current science job openings: http://www.esrf.eu/Jobs/english/recruitment-portal

3 PhD positions, 1 post-doc position

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A new way to make X-rays

A new way to make X-rays | Physics | Scoop.it
MIT researchers have found a phenomenon that might lead to more compact, tunable X-ray devices made of graphene.

Via Theo J. Mertzimekis
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

This theoretical research predics a new X-ray generation method based on confined plasmons in graphene. The concept is unique and it would be a highly advantageous method, since low-energy electrons can be used to produce tunable X-rays. In all the current approaches high-energy charged particles are needed (synchrotrons, free-electron lasers), which requires large device sizes and intensities.

 

Press release: http://news.mit.edu/2015/new-way-make-x-rays

Article: http://www.nature.com/nphoton/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nphoton.2015.223.html

 

X-rays are used for research and diagnostics purposes in materials and natural sciences, in engineering, and for biomedical and life sciences.

 

Note the upcoming X-ray workshop in Helsinki 3.-4.12.2015:  http://www.fsruo.fi/index.php/en/workshops-and-schools-2/fsruo2015 (public lectures)

 

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This Condensed Life | A Blog About Condensed Matter Physics that Trespasses on Topical Tangents

This Condensed Life | A Blog About Condensed Matter Physics that Trespasses on Topical Tangents | Physics | Scoop.it
A Blog About Condensed Matter Physics that Trespasses on Topical Tangents
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Check out this interesting condensed mattery physics blog with five contributing authors. 

 

The following are some of the most popular tags in the posts: BCS theory, charge density wave, superconductivity, experiment, perspective, philosophy, review.

 

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Perovskite quantum dots emit single photons - nanotechweb.org

Perovskite quantum dots emit single photons - nanotechweb.org | Physics | Scoop.it
The nanocrystals might find use in light-emitting diodes, with practical applications in displays.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Early stages in developing organometal trihalide perovskite semiconductors as quantum dots. Advantages could be easy tunability of emission wavelength but challenges remain due to tendency of the material to degrade.

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Long-sought chiral anomaly detected in crystalline material

Long-sought chiral anomaly detected in crystalline material | Physics | Scoop.it
A study by Princeton researchers presents evidence for a long-sought phenomenon—first theorized in the 1960s and predicted to be found in crystals in 1983—called the "chiral anomaly" in a metallic compound of sodium and bismuth. The additional finding of an increase in conductivity in the material may suggest ways to improve electrical conductance and minimize energy consumption in future electronic devices.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Evidence for a new physical phenomenon - "handedness" - in crystalline materials found in a Dirac semimetal.

 

Phys.org: http://phys.org/news/2015-09-long-sought-chiral-anomaly-crystalline-material.html

 

Science: http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2015/09/02/science.aac6089

 

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Ask Ethan #93: Newton’s Random Apple

Ask Ethan #93: Newton's Random Apple - Starts With A Bang! - Medium
If all the random motions of the molecules inside aligned, how far and fast would it go?
Mikko Hakala's insight:

The question is if thermal energy can be converted to the motion of the apple as a whole - Story of basic physical phenomena why this cannot happen.

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Electronic structure and phase stability of oxide semiconductors: Performance of dielectric-dependent hybrid functional DFT, benchmarked against GW band structure calculations and experiments

Electronic structure and phase stability of oxide semiconductors: Performance of dielectric-dependent hybrid functional DFT, benchmarked against GW band structure calculations and experiments | Physics | Scoop.it

- Mikko's summary -

 

* New hybrid functional benchmarked, aims to reproduce both ground- and excited state properties within a fully ab initio framework.

 

* A well-written introductory part, with review of the standard LDA/GGA gap problem, how the fraction 'alpha' in the hybrid calculation scheme relates to macroscopic dielectric constant, and what approaches have been used for alpha.

 

* Detailed, useful computational methodology part with discussions on codes and chosen parameters.

 

* The new approach is tested on wide-gap oxide semiconductors that have current or future technological impact (e.g. in photovoltaics and catalysis): ZnO, TiO2, ZrO2 and WO2.

 

* The paper essentially addresses the question of how to tune hybrid functional scheme to be a more applicable tool that can handle in a reliable way both energetics and electronic (ground and excited state) properties.

 

Read the paper:

http://journals.aps.org/prb/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevB.91.155201

Mikko Hakala's insight:

Any similar recent papers on hybrid functionals? Add your comment.

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Physics Days 2015 | The 49th Annual Meeting of the Finnish Physical Society

Physics Days 2015 | The 49th Annual Meeting of the Finnish Physical Society | Physics | Scoop.it

*Helsinki Congress Paasitorni, March 17-19, 2015, Finland*

 

From cosmology to molecular physics, from instrumentation to teaching, Physics Days in Helsinki gathers together researchers from many fields of physics and is open to everybody interested in the latest advances in science.

 

We have a great line-up of eight invited speakers (http://goo.gl/kJl0Y2), including Prof. Sir Tejinder Singh Virdee (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tejinder_Virdee), as well as contributions from attosecond physics research, synchrotron and atmospheric sciences and many others. 

 

Join the Days: Early bird registration DL Monday 19.1. (http://goo.gl/GLho65

 

Follow on Twitter: www.twitter.com/PhysDays2015 for interesting physics and latest news.

 

Welcome to Helsinki!

Mikko Hakala's insight:

Having participated many times in the Finnish Physics Days, I'm proud to be one of the organizers this year. It's a great, relaxed event just in the heart of Helsinki (very easy to reach).

 

As one of my colleague said, Physics Days is best for learning what's hot in the different fields, catching up with friends and making new connections. Not forgetting of course the conference dinner with extra program!

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ESRF News / December 2014

-Mikko's comment-

The December 2014 issue focuses on how X-ray research contributes to industrial needs. ESRF News is published by the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility.

Mikko Hakala's insight:

Continuing with the theme how basic research can be combined with industrial applications (see also http://sco.lt/91NxVh).

 

From pages 16-17: 

* improved automotive and industrial coatings

* characterisation of silicon wafers

* chemical species in catalysts

* microbeam radiation therapy

* obtaining 3D rock images to improve oil recovery

* non-destructive characterisation and imaging

 

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Simple but extremely sensitive magnetometer developed

An innovative magnetometer that can replace conventional technology in applications such as neuroimaging, mineral exploration and molecular diagnostics has been developed by scientists. Its manufacturing costs are between 70 and 80 per cent lower than those of traditional technology, and the device is not as sensitive to external magnetic fields as its predecessors. The design of the magnetometer also makes it easier to integrate into measuring systems.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

* A quantum mechanical phenomenon, kinetic inductance due to the motion of the superconducting electrons, is here employed to create a sensitive magnetometer. The non-linearity of kinetic inductance is utilized: the inductance increases when one approaches critical current densities (at which the superconducting pairs of electrons break up).

 

* The fabrication process is simpler than in conventional SQUIDS. The device is made from a single layer or niobium nitride, in contrast to SQUIDS that need a more complicated manufacturing process due to their layered structure.

 

* Nature Communications article:

http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2014/140910/ncomms5872/full/ncomms5872.html

 

* VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland:

http://www.vtt.fi/?lang=en

 

* Kinetic inductance:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinetic_inductance

 

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European XFEL - News - 2014 - Watching molecular matches

European XFEL - News - 2014 - Watching molecular matches | Physics | Scoop.it

Scientists at the European XFEL will watch the interplay of molecules with the instrument FXE, allowing stunning insight in the electronic forces driving the world of chemistry.

Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Chemical reactions take place in femtoseconds (10^-15 s). Traditionally one just analyses the initial and final products of a reaction, but new instruments like X-ray free electron lasers start to enable following the actual development of the geometries and electronic states.

 

The femtochemistry as studied at European XFEL is explained in the feature article: http://www.xfel.eu/news/2014/watching_molecular_matches/index.html

 

See a simulation of an UV-light triggered reaction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qAT6SkiEN9M

 

 

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Fundamentals of physics confirmed: Experiments testing Einstein's time dilation and quantum electrodynamics

Fundamentals of physics confirmed: Experiments testing Einstein's time dilation and quantum electrodynamics | Physics | Scoop.it
The special theory of relativity of Albert Einstein and quantum electrodynamics, which was formulated by, among others, Richard Feynman, are two important fundaments of modern physics. In cooperation with colleagues from several international universities and institutes, the research group of Professor ...
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Detecting fluorescence radiation from relativistically moving ions is here used to test two fundamental physics theories: special relativity and QED.  - Better precision obtained in the experiments, no violations found.

 

http://phys.org/news/2014-10-fundamentals-physics-einstein-dilation-quantum.html

 

Direct links to the studies:

 

Special relativity

http://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.113.120405

http://physics.aps.org/synopsis-for/10.1103/PhysRevLett.113.120405 ;

 

Hyperfine splitting (predicted by quantum electrodynamics)

http://journals.aps.org/pra/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevA.90.030501

 

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X-ray breakthrough 'opens door' to controlled nuclear fusion

X-ray breakthrough 'opens door' to controlled nuclear fusion | Physics | Scoop.it
Scientists have for the first time been able to monitor the flow of energy during fast ignition, a process that it hoped to be capable of creating controlled nuclear fusion

Via Theo J. Mertzimekis
Mikko Hakala's insight:

X-ray imaging helps develop fast ignition methods in nuclear fusion. The challenge is to follow where the energy of the high-intensity laser goes in the 2nd step of the ignition, the target area being the densest region of the compressed fuel.

 

To monitor this, Cu tracers are used, which are hit by fast electrons generated by the intensive laser. The resulting X-ray fluorescence radiation from Cu is then used for advanced spatial imaging of the energy deposition.

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Manufacturing thin film tandem solar cells using thin perovskite layer for low cost roll-to-roll production

Manufacturing thin film tandem solar cells using thin perovskite layer for low cost roll-to-roll production | Physics | Scoop.it
Latest breakthroughs in sustainable technology, business and market analysis
Mikko Hakala's insight:

* New procedure for a tandem cell with future potential for low-cost roll-to-roll production. (Low cost due to processing at low temperature.)

* Upper layer: semi-transparent methylammonium lead iodide solar cell module (grown as perovskite crystals)

* Interlayer: phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester

* Lower layer: copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) second solar cell module.

 

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Synchrotron Light Finland 2015

Synchrotron Light Finland 2015 | Physics | Scoop.it

Annual Workshop & School of the Finnish Synchrotron Radiation User Organisation

Helsinki, Kumpula Science Campus, 3.-4.12.2015

 

Public lectures 

*Thursday 3rd December, 12:00-17:00 Physicum building, hall E204

*Friday 4th December, 9:00-12:00 Exactum building, hall CK112

 

Invited keynote lecturers

*Prof. Olle Björneholm, Uppsala University, Sweden: From molecules to rain: Probing atmospherically relevant aqueous surfaces with XPS

*Dr. Daniel Clare, Diamond Light Source, UK:
The UK national electron microscope facility, direct electron detectors and helical viruses

*Dr. Ulla Vainio, Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, Germany:Harder, Better, Faster - X-ray scattering experiments at synchrotrons

*Acad. Prof. Maarit Karppinen, Aalto University, Finland:Title TBA

 

Mikko Hakala's insight:

Welcome to the meeting & visit the page for updates.

 

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The True Alchemists

The True Alchemists | Physics | Scoop.it
Ernest Rutherford and Frederick Soddy, true alchemists, achieved the first artificial transmutation (the conversion of a chemical element into another).

Via Theo J. Mertzimekis
Mikko Hakala's insight:

“Rutherford, this is transmutation!”
“For Mike’s sake, Soddy, don’t call it transmutation. They’ll have our heads off as alchemists.”

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Ψk 2015 Conference / September 6-10 / Donostia-San Sebastian

Ψk 2015 Conference / September 6-10 / Donostia-San Sebastian | Physics | Scoop.it

The Psi-k 2015 Conference is the fifth in a series started in 1996 by the European electronic structure community. Every five years, this conference brings together the global community that is active in the science of electronic structure and properties of condensed matter. The conference is organized and supported by the Psi-k Network**, and its programme covers both the fundamental and theoretical aspects of electronic structure calculations, computational methods and tools, in addition to applications to fundamental scientific and industrial and societal challenges. The application areas of electronic property calculations range from condensed matter and materials physics to nanoscience, chemistry, geophysics and biology, the design and discovery of novel materials, their properties, and their performance in devices (that is, to harvest, store, and convert energy) and to engineer new states of matter to advance fundamental and applied sciences.

Mikko Hakala's insight:

This great conference is starting. Here are the symposia:


* Thirty Years of Car-Parrinello

* GW and BSE

* f- electrons: "In memory of Walter Temmerman and his contributions to Psi-k and the electronic structure community”
* Correlated Electrons
* Theoretical Spectroscopy
* Recent Advances in Diagrammatic Methods for the Total Energy
* Novel Density Functionals
* Recent Developments in Density Matrix Functional Theory
* Density-Functional Theory for Coupled Matter-Photon Systems
* Applications of Quantum Monte Carlo Methods
* Upscaling Electronic Structure: Reduced-Scaling and Multi-Scale Methods
* Spin-Orbit Coupling Effects in First-Principles Quantum Transport
* Magnetic excitations and magnetization dynamics
* Chiral Magnetism
* First-Principles Calculations for Multiferroics and Magnetoelectrics
* Ab Initio Statistical Mechanics
* Topological Insulators
* Electrochemical Energy Storage and Conversion: Solid/Liquid Interfaces
* Materials Design
* Machine Learning Methods in Materials Modeling
* Hybrid Photovoltaic Materials
* Electron Phonon Coupling and Thermoelectricity
* Ultrafast Charge Transfer at the Nanoscale
* Non-­Linear Optics of Materials and Nanoplasmonics
* Novel 2D Materials and Heterostructures
* Modeling of Defect Levels
* Transport Properties
* Matter Under Extreme Conditions
* Electronic Structure Theory for Biophysics 

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Q&A: Researchers Explain a Strange High-Intensity Result at SLAC's X-ray Laser

Q&A: Researchers Explain a Strange High-Intensity Result at SLAC's X-ray Laser | Physics | Scoop.it
SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science laboratory operated by Stanford University.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

This is an interesting experimental study on fundamental X-ray - matter interactions. 

 

Focus the power of LCLS X-ray free-electron laser to a 0.1 micron size point on a beryllium sample. The result is concerted non-linear Compton scattering: Two photons hit the sample, scatter from the Be's nearly-free electrons, and the end result is an outgoing electron and a photon.

 

However, the experiment shows an anomalous redshift of the outgoing photons, which suggest some new scattering mechanism to be understood.   

 

The SLAC news: https://www6.slac.stanford.edu/news/2015-08-31-qa-researchers-explain-strange-high-intensity-result-slacs-x-ray-laser.aspx

 

Original article: http://www.nature.com/nphys/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nphys3452.html

 

For other X-ray news, visit: http://twitter.com/helixsfi

 

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RIXS reveals where TiO2 nanoparticles store electrons after plasmon-induced electron transfer from Au

RIXS reveals where TiO2 nanoparticles store electrons after plasmon-induced electron transfer from Au | Physics | Scoop.it

The photo-catalytic performance of TiO2 nanoparticles can be improved by attaching metal particles that have strong absorption bands in the visible region of the light spectrum. An optically excited surface plasmon in Au metal particles may trigger a charge transfer to the TiO2 particle thus improving its ability to catalyse chemical reactions. In this work, the modification of the TiO2 electronic structure following the charge transfer was studied in order to address the question of where the TiO2 particle stores the additional charge.

Mikko Hakala's insight:

An X-ray scattering technique called RIXS can be used to detect the local electronic structure at the Ti sites of TiO2 during charge injection. This information is important to clarify the basic physical processes in photocatalysts in view of improving the performance.

 

Here, laser pump - X-ray probe (RIXS) technique was used with Au nanoparticles attached on the TiO2 surface. The study finds evidence of charge to be trapped at Ti sites and a distortion of the TiO6 octahedra at the surface during the injection.

 

RIXS: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resonant_inelastic_X-ray_scattering

 

The ESRF highlight: http://www.esrf.eu/home/news/spotlight/content-news/spotlight/spotlight227.html

 

The reserach article: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/anie.201412030/abstract

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Chameleons change their colors by rearranging nanocrystals in their skin

Chameleons change their colors by rearranging nanocrystals in their skin | Physics | Scoop.it
Chameleons may do their quick-change color camouflage by changing the positions of light-reflecting cells in their skin, according to a new study.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

Cool physics by chameleons! They tune the structure of guanine nanoparticles to quickly switch colour. 

 

Original article (optical physics):

http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150302/ncomms7368/full/ncomms7368.html

 

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Comet landing named Physics World 2014 Breakthrough of the Year - physicsworld.com

Comet landing named Physics World 2014 Breakthrough of the Year - physicsworld.com | Physics | Scoop.it
Rosetta mission tops our list of the 10 key breakthroughs in physics
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

A great mix of 10 fundamental and applied physics breakthroughs. From the materials and condensed matter point of view, we have the better optical fibres and the magnetic holography data storage based on magnons.

 

http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/2014/dec/12/comet-landing-named-physics-world-2014-breakthrough-of-the-year

 

For a very short summary:

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-30415007

 

Which one is your favorite breakthrough? 

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Application of quantum calculations in the chemical industry—An overview - Deglmann - 2014 - International Journal of Quantum Chemistry - Wiley Online Library

Application of quantum calculations in the chemical industry—An overview - Deglmann - 2014 - International Journal of Quantum Chemistry - Wiley Online Library | Physics | Scoop.it

-Mikko's comment-

This is a great free-to-read overview on how quantum mechanical calculations help chemical industry, both in predicting properties and giving better understanding of the systems and the processes.

 

The key issues covered are:

* Method development

* Benchmarking (what is the quality of predictions)

* Modeling chemical reactions (in gas phase or in solutions, or in catalysis and on surfaces)

* Characterizing structures and predicting new ones, explaining experimental spectroscopic results

* Calculating excitations (energies, reactivities of excited states)

 

Link to the article:

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/qua.24811/abstract

 

h/t @physicsteo

 

My own interests link most closely to the fourth point (see for example our recent article http://goo.gl/FxjgUH).

Mikko Hakala's insight:

Can you recommend other similar overviews that combine fundamental research and industrial interests?

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Holey Rubber Slab Has Controllable Stiffness

Holey Rubber Slab Has Controllable Stiffness | Physics | Scoop.it
Squeezing a holey rubber slab changes its stiffness over a wide range in the direction perpendicular to the squeeze.
Mikko Hakala's insight:

 

Good materials physics article. Here's my quick summary:

 

* For metamaterials the properties (strength, reflectivity etc.) follow from macroscopic structure, not elemental composition.

* The developed silicone rubber slab has perforated alternative holes, leading to interesting non-linear stress-strain behavior.

* The material could absorb and dissipate energy (transferred to it for ex. by impacts or shocks), rather than only storing it as energy in the spring.

* In other words, the material is not 'bumpy' but 'dissipative'. Applications can be found in robotics etc. and everyday objects which require control of damping.

* The advantage of this material is that it's pure mechanical and doesn't require external energy to operate. 

 

Pin it for later: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/318981586081801924/

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Team reveals molecular structure of water at gold electrodes

Team reveals molecular structure of water at gold electrodes | Physics | Scoop.it
When a solid material is immersed in a liquid, the liquid immediately next to its surface differs from that of the bulk liquid at the molecular level. This interfacial layer is critical to our understanding of a diverse set of phenomena from biology to materials science. When the solid surface is charged, ...
Mikko Hakala's insight:

State of the art in the experimental research on structure of water. X-ray absorption spectroscopy reveals the structure of interfacial water (on the gold surface) with sub-nanometer sensitivity.

 

http://phys.org/news/2014-10-team-reveals-molecular-gold-electrodes.html

 

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2014/10/22/science.1259437

 

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