Ramamoorthy Ramesh of the Materials Sciences Division and Jinxiang Zhang of the Physical Biosciences Division led the discovery of a way to introduce a recoverable strain into bismuth ferrite larger than any shape-memory effect observed in a metal. This discovery opens the door to applications in a wide range of fields, including medical, energy and electronics. The shape-memory effect is the metallic equivalent of elasticity, in which a solid material “remembers” and recovers its original shape after being deformed by an applied stress. Ramesh and his group are the first to achieve the shape-memory effect in a metal oxide rather than an alloy. Also working on this study were Xiaoxing Ke, Gaoyang Gou, Jan Seidel, Bin Xiang, Pu Yu, Wen-I Liang, Andrew Minor, Ying-hao Chu, Gustaaf Van Tendeloo and Xiaobing Ren. More>
Posts Tagged ‘Materials Sciences Division’
Oil and water don’t mix, as any chemist or cook knows. Tom Russell, a visiting faculty polymer scientist with the Materials Sciences Division, is using that chemical and culinary truth to change the natural spherical shape of liquid drops into ellipsoids, tubes and other exotics shapes that could find valuable uses as therapeutic delivery systems, biosensors, microfluidic lab-on-a-chip devices, or possibly as the basis for an all-liquid electrical battery. Russell is able to stabilize droplets into these non-equilibrium shapes through the combination of water, oil and nanoparticle surfactants plus an external field – either electrical or mechanical. More>
Jeff Kortright and Walter Drisdell of the Materials Sciences Division led a study in which X-ray absorption spectroscopy at the Advanced Light Source was used to make the first in situ electronic structure observations of the adsorption of carbon dioxide inside Mg-MOF-74, an open metal site MOF that has emerged as one of the most promising strategies for capturing and storing greenhouse gases. Experimental results were recorded at ALS beamline 6.3.1. Computational resources at both NERSC and the Molecular Foundry were used to help interpret the data. Also working on this study, which was carried out through Berkeley’s Energy Frontier Research Center, were Roberta Poloni, Thomas McDonald, Jeffrey Long, Berend Smit, Jeffrey Neaton and David Prendergast. More>
New work by researchers at UC Berkeley could soon transform the building blocks of modern electronics by making nanomagnetic switches a viable replacement for the conventional transistors found in all computers. Scientists exploited the special properties of the rare, heavy metal tantalum to make it happen. “This is a breakthrough in the push for low-powered computing,” says principal investigator and Berkeley Lab materials scientist Sayeef Salahuddin. More>
Voto — a small, handheld fuel cell that converts heat from a cook stove into chemical energy that charges a battery — has received the top prize from Proto Lab’s “Cool Ideas’ awards program. Craig Jacobson developed the technology during his tenure as a materials scientist at Berkeley Lab. It was licensed to his company Point Source Power. Proto Labs is a manufacturer of prototype and low-volume parts. More>
Understanding superconductivity — whereby certain materials can conduct electricity without any loss of energy — has proved to be a tremendous tangle of complex physics. Now Berkeley Lab scientists have teased out another important thread from this giant ball of string, bringing us a significant step closer to understanding how high- temperature superconductors work their magic. Working with a model compound, the team illuminated the origins of the so-called “stripe phase” in which electrons become concentrated in stripes throughout a material, and which appears to be linked to superconductivity. More>
Robert Ritchie of the Materials Sciences Division and a team that included Caltech’s William Johnson, one of the pioneers in the field of bulk metallic glass fabrication, have found a bulk metallic glass (BMG) based on palladium that’s as strong as the best composite BMGs and comparable to steel, aluminum and titanium. From the production of tougher, more durable smart phones and other electronic devices, to a wider variety of longer lasting biomedical implants, BMGs are poised to be mainstay materials for the 21st Century. Also working on this study were Bernd Gludovatz, Marios Demetriou, Michael Floyd and Anton Hohenwarter. More>
MSD Gives Back is sponsoring a toy and coat drive benefiting BOSS (Building Opportunities for Self Sufficiency) in Berkeley. BOSS provides services that help families and individuals move from homelessness to homes. Employees and affiliates are encouraged to bring a new toy (for children age 5-18) or a gently used coat to the MSD Division office in Building 66-250 between Nov. 18 and Dec. 13. MSD has partnered with One Warm Coat for the drive.
UC Berkeley Professor Alison Gopnik is the speaker for tomorrow’s Nano*High lecture, starting at 10 a.m. in 2050 Valley Life Sciences Building on campus. During her talk, “”Babies and Toddlers: They are Smarter Than We Are,” Gopnik will discuss the techniques she has developed that allow us to see how young children use the limited evidence around them to determine causality. Nano*High talks are geared towards high school students. Lab staff are welcome if space allows. Go here for more information and to register.
Feng Wang of the Materials Sciences Division led the development of a technique that permits researchers to image the structure of an individual carbon nanotube and characterize its electronic and optical properties in a functional device. Despite their almost incomprehensibly small size – about one ten-thousandth the thickness of a human hair – single-walled carbon nanotubes come in a plethora of different structures, each with unique electronic and optical properties. Until now, characterizing an individual carbon nanotube has involved a lot of guesswork. Working with Feng were Kaihui Liu, Xiaoping Hong, Qin Zhou, Chenhao Jin, Jinghua Li, Weiwei Zhou, Jie Liu, Enge Wang and Alex Zettl. More>