News: Nanotechnology

What happens when materials take tiny hits

When tiny particles strike a metal surface at high speed — for example, as coatings being sprayed or as micrometeorites pummeling a space station — the moment of impact happens so fast that the details of process haven’t been clearly understood, until now. A team of researchers at MIT has…  

Healing Deeper Flaws in Metal

Surface scratches are one thing, but what if materials could heal deeper flaws too? Research into self-healing metals, a completely different material, is also yielding promising results at an early stage. The idea is to create metals that can better cope with the repeated pressures of daily use…  

Transparent Graphene

The vast majority of computing devices today are made from silicon, the second most abundant element on Earth, after oxygen. Silicon can be found in various forms in rocks, clay, sand, and soil. And while it is not the best semiconducting material that exists on the planet, it is by far the most…  

Getting to the heart of carbon nanotube clusters

Integrating nanoscale fibers such as carbon nanotubes (CNTs) into commercial applications, from coatings for aircraft wings to heat sinks for mobile computing, requires them to be produced in large scale and at low cost. Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) is a promising approach to manufacture CNTs…  

New technique allows rapid screening for new types of solar cells

The worldwide quest by researchers to find better, more efficient materials for tomorrow’s solar panels is usually slow and painstaking. Researchers typically must produce lab samples — which are often composed of multiple layers of different materials bonded together — for extensive testing.…  

Researchers develop flexible, stretchable photonic devices

Researchers at MIT and several other institutions have developed a method for making photonic devices — similar to electronic devices but based on light rather than electricity — that can bend and stretch without damage. The devices could find uses in cables to connect computing devices, or in…  

New property found in unusual crystalline materials

Most metals and semiconductors, from the steel in a knife blade to the silicon in a solar panel, are made up of many tiny crystalline grains. The way these grains meet at their edges can have a major impact on the solid’s properties, including mechanical strength, electrical conductivity,…  

Fast-moving magnetic particles could enable new form of data storage

New research from the Beach Group has shown that an exotic kind of magnetic behavior discovered just a few years ago holds great promise as a way of storing data — one that could overcome fundamental limits that might otherwise be signaling the end of “Moore’s Law,” which describes the ongoing…  

Materials Day Symposium 2017

Hosted annually by our friends at MPC, Materials Day includes a topical symposium followed by a student poster session. This year the symposium will be broad in scope and will involve primarily speakers from MIT. The theme will be Frontiers in Materials Research. Presentations will be given by speakers who represent MIT’s new generation of leaders in material research.  

Future Semiconductors Could be 'Photocopied' Using Graphene

Semiconductor chips of tomorrow could one day be manufactured by using a "photocopying" process on super-thin sheets of graphene, rather than using traditional silicon, according to research being conducted at MIT. The MIT research involves graphene, which are single-atom-thin sheets of…