Month: July 2020

Nanoparticle meta-grid for enhanced light extraction from light-emitting devices

A tailored layer of plasmonic nanoparticles can be introduced into the epoxy casing of a light-emitting diode (LED) to improve the device’s light output, to benefit energy savings and boost the LED lifetime. In a new report on Nature Light: Science & Applications, Debrata Sikdar and a team of scientists in chemistry, electronics and physics at the Imperial College London and the Indian Institute of Technology, showed the benefits of including a two-dimensional (2-D) array of silver nanoparticles known as a ‘meta-grid’ to the lens shaped epoxy packaging. They tested their theory using computer simulations and demonstrated the ability to improve light extraction from the nanoparticle meta-grid based LED. The alternative approach can be customized to suit a specific color of emission, the authors proposed a few additional schemes to implement the strategy into the existing LED manufacturing technology.

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Ultra-fast laser-based writing of data to storage devices

Modern life revolves around data, which means that we need new, fast, and energy-efficient methods to read and write data on our storage devices. Optical-based approaches, which use laser pulses to write data instead of magnets, have received considerable attention over the past decade following the development of all-optical switching (AOS) for magnetic materials. While fast and energy efficient, AOS has issues with precision. Researchers at Eindhoven University of Technology have devised a new method to accurately write data to a cobalt-gadolinium (Co/Gd) layer with a laser pulse using a ferromagnetic material as a reference to help with the writing process. Their research is published in Nature Communications.

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NASA’s Webb Telescope will study Jupiter, its rings, and two intriguing moons

Jupiter, named for the king of the ancient Roman gods, commands its own mini-version of our solar system of circling satellites; their movements convinced Galileo Galilei that Earth is not the center of the universe in the early 17th century. More than 400 years later, astronomers will use NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope to observe these famous subjects, pushing the observatory’s instruments to their fullest capabilities and laying the groundwork for far-reaching scientific discovery.

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3-D nanometer-thin membrane borrows from biology

Mimicking the structure of the kidney, a team of scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) have created a three-dimensional nanometer (nm)-thin membrane that breaks the permeance-selectivity trade-off of artificial membranes.

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How to improve climate modeling and prediction

We are changing the Earth system at a unprecedented speed without knowing the consequences in detail. Increasingly detailed, physics-based models are improving steadily, but an in-depth understanding of persisting uncertainties is still lacking. The two main challenges have been to obtain the necessary amount of detail in the models and to accurately predict how anthropogenic carbon dioxide disturbs the climate’s intrinsic, natural variability. A path to surmounting both of these obstacles are now laid out in a comprehensive review published in Reviews of Modern Physics by Michael Ghil and Valerio Lucarini from the EU Horizon 2020 climate science project TiPES.

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