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Tag: a2016

Our cells produce small molecules, known as proteins, as part of their normal function. These proteins are quality controlled to maintain our overall health and normal function. As we age, the quality control process deteriorates. This permits the production of harmful proteins in the brain, such as β-amyloids. When harmful β-amyloids find each other, they […]

Something rather eccentric happens when electronics gets smaller; devices can not only be very powerful but come with some exotic new properties. Namely, at the very tiny scale, the nano-scale, things behave differently and exploiting these novel effects offers opportunities in new and emerging technologies. The field of molecular electronics proposes to use elements as […]

Nanotechnology conjures up images of tiny machines able to deliver drugs to the body, produce clean energy or take over the world – depending on who you talk to. The reality is that many of the nanostructures that scientists currently use in the lab have already been used for millennia. In the past, gold nanoparticles […]

The revolution has been happening in microscopy laboratories around the world: the fundamental resolution limit has been broken. Before this revolution, it was accepted that the smallest detail which can be observed is determined by a hundred year old equation formulated by physicist Ernst Abbe. Abbe’s limit stated that nothing can be resolved that is […]

If you ever asked yourself why rubbing a balloon on your head makes your hair stand up, the reason is electrical; it is because of static electricity, an effect known for thousands of years but needs to be avoided in many electronics appliances. But static electricity can be useful to generate energy with the help […]

Stone age, bronze age, steel age, silicon age… What next? I think this century will be the age of nanomaterials. Reducing the size of electronics to the nanoscale directly translates into reduced material input and power consumption. At the same time nanomaterials allow diversifying into new applications; for example, non-invasive health tracking or allergen sensing.  […]

DNA is something more than a code for life. It can become a programmable macromolecule, with precise control at the molecular level, and therefore act as a smart building block for a bulk material. I am developing this new type of bulk material, known as “DNA hydrogels”, which can serve as a framework for recognizing […]

We recycle glass, metal, paper – but why not CO2, energy production’s No.1 waste product? Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is the main driver of global warming and climate change. Since the beginning of the industrial revolution, humans burn fossil fuels, such as coal, oil and natural gas to harvest energy. The main by-product of this chemical reaction […]

Can we solve common issues of cancer treatments through the use of a nano-sized crystal? Common cancer treatments today can be incredibly toxic: some are insoluble in water and therefore require higher doses, and some are non-specific – affecting more than just the unhealthy areas of the body. Treatments also tend to not last very […]

The world spends 20% of the electricity produced today on lighting. If we all lit up our homes and offices using light-emitting diodes (LEDs) instead of the conventional incandescent and fluorescent lighting, our electricity consumption will be significantly reduced. At present, efficient LEDs emitting blue and red coloured light are available. However, to achieve white […]