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Thursday, January 29, 2015

ScienceDaily: Engineering and Construction News

ScienceDaily: Engineering and Construction News

Spiky 'hedgehog particles' for safer paints, fewer VOC emissions

Posted: 28 Jan 2015 10:12 AM PST

A new process that can sprout microscopic spikes on nearly any type of particle may lead to more environmentally friendly paints and a variety of other innovations.

Holes in valence bands of nanodiamonds discovered: Potential catalysts for splitting water

Posted: 28 Jan 2015 09:54 AM PST

Nanodiamonds are tiny crystals only a few nanometers in size. While they possess the crystalline structure of diamonds, their properties diverge considerably from those of their big brothers, because their surfaces play a dominant role in comparison to their extremely small volumes. Suspended in aqueous solutions, they could function as taxis for active substances in biomedical applications, for example, or be used as catalysts for splitting water.

Demystifying nanocrystal solar cells

Posted: 28 Jan 2015 09:54 AM PST

Researchers have developed a comprehensive model to explain how electrons flow inside new types of solar cells made of tiny crystals. The model allows for a better understanding of such cells and may help to increase their efficiency.

Bike-to-work events offer chance to explore barriers to cycling

Posted: 28 Jan 2015 08:39 AM PST

Cities that host bike-to-work events as their sole effort to increase commuter travel by bicycle may be missing a larger -- perhaps more valuable -- opportunity, according to a study. Local governments should use bike-to-work days to find out from participants why they're attending and -- more importantly -- what prevents them from biking more often, according to the study.

Researchers use sound to slow down, speed up, and block light

Posted: 28 Jan 2015 06:35 AM PST

How do you make an optical fiber transmit light only one way? Researchers have experimentally demonstrated, for the first time, the phenomenon of Brillouin Scattering Induced Transparency (BSIT), which can be used to slow down, speed up, and block light in an optical waveguide. The BSIT phenomenon permits light to travel in the forward direction while light traveling in the backward direction is strongly absorbed. This non-reciprocal behavior is essential for building isolators and circulators.

Programmed synthesis towards multi-substituted benzene derivatives

Posted: 27 Jan 2015 06:58 AM PST

Chemists have developed a new method to accomplish the programmed synthesis of benzene derivatives with five or six different functional groups that enables access to novel functional organic materials that could not have been reached before.

Device for guided surgery of deviations in long bones patented

Posted: 26 Jan 2015 08:22 AM PST

A device that can be applied in surgeries to correct deviations in long bones has been patented by researchers. The research team found how to use the 3D reconstruction of an affected bone to determine the mathematical formula that in a given case is suitable to design such a device. This device is adjusted to a specific deviated bone and enables a surgeon to set the cutting angle that best suits the bone, and, also, to set the location and orientation of holes that accept the future addition of a corrective prosthesis. It enables realigning the body extremity that is operated on, and also increases precision, shortens the time required for the operation, and improves the operation's functional results. The device has already been used with success in operations on animals and could have applications in orthopedic surgery on humans.

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