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IBM scientists first to distinguish individual molecular bonds

September 13, 2012 1:04 pm | News | Comments

Using non-contact atomic force microscopy, researchers at IBM have been able to differentiate the chemical bonds in individual molecules for the first time. The results push the exploration of using molecules and atoms at the smallest scale and could be important for studying graphene devices.

Chemists develop nose-like sensor array to “smell” cancer diagnoses

September 13, 2012 12:36 pm | News | Comments

In a pre-clinical non-small-cell lung cancer metastasis model in mice, a research team at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst uses a sensor array system of gold nanoparticles and proteins to “smell” different cancer types in much the same way our noses identify and remember different odors.

Nanoengineers can print 3D microstructures in mere seconds

September 13, 2012 11:53 am | News | Comments

Nanoengineers at the University of California, San Diego have developed a novel technology that can fabricate, in mere seconds, microscale 3D structures out of soft, biocompatible hydrogels. Near term, the technology could lead to better systems for growing and studying cells, including stem cells, in the laboratory. Long-term, the goal is to be able to print biological tissues for regenerative medicine.


Cliffs Natural Resources names new executives

September 13, 2012 9:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The finance chief at Cliffs Natural Resources is being put in charge of global mining operations.The appointment of Laurie Brlas was one of a series of management changes announced Thursday by the Cleveland company. It's part the company's shift focus to growth projects and away from mergers...

Luminescent ink produced from eggs

September 13, 2012 7:51 am | News | Comments

A variety of processes have been developed to make miniature objects known as carbon dots or C-dots, which are valued in imaging for their optical properties. Researchers in China have now introduced a new method for making them quickly and inexpensively. These fluorescent carbon dots are made by plasma pyrolysis from egg yolk or egg white and can be used as printer ink.

5,000 Innovations and Counting

September 13, 2012 4:59 am | Articles | Comments

For the last 50 years, the R&D 100 Awards have recognized the best in technological innovation.

New nanoparticle system finds mercury in water, fish

September 13, 2012 4:33 am | by Erin White | News | Comments

The system currently being used to test for mercury and its very toxic derivative, methyl mercury, is time-intensive, costly, and can only detect quantities at already toxic levels. Researchers at Northwestern University and in Switzerland have invented a device consisting of a strip of glass with a nanoparticle film attached that can detect heavy metals in quantities more than a million times smaller than is currently possible.

U.S. research and development most prevalent in small number of regions

September 13, 2012 4:29 am | News | Comments

According to data from a 2008 Business R&D and Innovation Survey by the National Science Foundation, businesses perform the lion's share of their R&D activity in just a small number of geographic areas, particularly the San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland area and the New York-Newark-Bridgeport area.


No more bubbles when boiling

September 13, 2012 3:53 am | News | Comments

A theoretical physicist from Swinburne University of Technology and colleagues from Saudi Arabia and the U.S. have discovered a specialty-engineered surface that allows liquids to boil without bubbling. To suppress bubbling while boiling, the team of researchers used a highly water-repellent surface to control the boiling state of a liquid.

Ashland to raze Md. factory before selling site

September 13, 2012 2:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Ashland Inc. company officials say they have discontinued production at an Elkton manufacturing facility and plan to tear it down.Gary Rhodes, director of corporate communications for Kentucky-based Ashland, says most of the business associated with the site was sold to Celanese Corp. earlier...

Air Products acquires air separation business

September 12, 2012 2:41 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Air Products & Chemicals Inc. said Wednesday that it has acquired an air-separation unit and integrated-gases liquefier in Guiyang, China from Guizhou Kaiyang Chemical Co. Ltd.The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.The company said the unit will produce about 2,000 tons per day of...

Lear appoints Ligocki to board

September 12, 2012 2:40 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Lear Corp. said Wednesday that it has appointed Kathleen Ligocki to its board.Ligocki is an operating executive at Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers and serves as CEO of Next Autoworks Co, which is a Kleiner Perkins company. She also serves on the board of the specialty chemical company Ashland...

Goodyear to lay off 55 workers at Virginia plant

September 12, 2012 10:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. is laying off about 55 hourly workers at its Danville, Va. plant.Plant spokeswoman Laura Singleton says the layoffs are effective Sept. 29.Singleton tells media outlets that company is adjusting production at the plant.The plant employs about 2,300 workers.


Innovations Move Materials, Energy, and Imaging Forward

September 12, 2012 10:18 am | Articles | Comments

The R&D 100 Awards have a 50-year history of recognizing excellence in innovation, and the 2012 class of winners have continued this tradition. A better light bulb, breathable sportswear, neutron generators, and laser control systems illustrate a diversity of technology advances in established and emerging industry sectors.

2012 R & D 100 Awards Judges

September 12, 2012 10:14 am | Articles | Comments

Experts in high-technology R&D are invited to participate in the R&D 100 Awards judging process. We thank our panel of judges for the 2012 R&D 100 Awards.

R & D Traditions Past, Present, and Future

September 12, 2012 10:01 am | Articles | Comments

Every year, R&D Magazine ’s annual R&D 100 Awards issue is a special project for the editorial team as we recognize the top technology innovations of the previous year. This year, "special" takes on extra meaning, as we mark the 50th anniversary of the awards program.

Two-faced materials boost hydrogen production

September 12, 2012 9:48 am | News | Comments

Though costly to produce, hydrogen is crucial for the oil-refining industry and the production of essential chemicals such as the ammonia used in fertilizers. The recent invention of a new photocatalyst may help the efficiency of this process. Nanometer-scale “Janus” structures consisting of cheap metal and oxide spheres were recently demonstrated as an excellent catalyst for a hydrogen-production reaction powered only by sunlight.

Less wear, longer life for memory storage device

September 12, 2012 9:42 am | News | Comments

Probe storage devices read and write data by making nanoscale marks on a surface through physical contact, but they currently have limited lifespans due to mechanical wear. A research team, led by Intel Corp., has now developed a long-lasting ultrahigh-density probe storage device by coating the tips of the probes with a thin metal film. The technology may one day extend the data density limits of conventional magnetic and optical storage.

Discovery: Quantum stress in nanofilms

September 12, 2012 9:39 am | News | Comments

Stresses arise in thin films during the manufacture of read heads in hard drives, lasers, and computer chip transistors. This can cause crystal lattice defects and eventual component failure. Researchers have recently determined that enormous stresses, up to 1,000 times atmospheric pressure, can be created in thin films by a quantum-mechanical mechanism that has been unknown until now. It is based on an effect by the name of quantum confinement.

Bendable crystals resolve properties of X-ray pulses

September 12, 2012 6:27 am | News | Comments

A frustrating flaw in a set of custom crystals for an instrument at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory inspired a solution for an important scientific challenge: how to accurately measure the colors of each individual pulse from a powerful X-ray laser.

Nanoparticle quick response code becomes banknote security feature

September 12, 2012 5:26 am | News | Comments

An invisible quick response (QR) code has been created by researchers in South Dakota in an attempt to increase security on printed documents and reduce the possibility of counterfeiting, a problem which costs governments and private industries billions of dollars each year. The QR code is made of tiny nanoparticles that have been combined with blue and green fluorescence ink, which is invisible until illuminated with laser light.

Ormet to lay off 200 at La. plant

September 12, 2012 4:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Ormet Corp. plans to lay off 200 people at its alumina plant in Ascension Parish because of reduced demand caused by rising power rates in Ohio.The Advocate reports ( ) Ormet issued 60-day federal layoff notices Tuesday for the Burnside plant, which produces the primary raw...

Goodyear to lay off 55 workers at Danville plant

September 12, 2012 4:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. is laying off about 55 hourly workers at its Danville plant.Plant spokeswoman Laura Singleton says the layoffs are effective Sept. 29.Singleton tells media outlets that company is adjusting production at the plant.The plant employs about 2,300 workers.

How to clean up oil spills

September 12, 2012 3:38 am | by Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office | News | Comments

Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers have developed a new technique for magnetically separating oil and water that could be used to clean up oil spills. They believe that, with their technique, the oil could be recovered for use, offsetting much of the cleanup cost.

Police: 1,000 strikers at SA Anglo platinum mine

September 12, 2012 2:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Labor unrest grows in South Africa as police say 1,000 strikers are blocking access to the main shaft at Anglo American Platinum, stopping some operations at the world's largest platinum mine.Anglo spokeswoman Mpumi Sithole said threats and intimidation from "unidentified individuals" had...

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