Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > The right recipe: Engineering research improves laser detectors, batteries

Abstract:
Think of it as cooking with carbon spaghetti: A Kansas State University researcher is developing new ways to create and work with carbon nanotubes -- ultrasmall tubes that look like pieces of spaghetti or string.

The right recipe: Engineering research improves laser detectors, batteries

Manhattan, KS | Posted on February 6th, 2012

These carbon nanotubes -- made of graphene, an atom-thick sheet of carbon -- have the perfect ingredients for improving laser detectors and rechargeable batteries, according to research by Gurpreet Singh, assistant professor of mechanical and nuclear engineering. Singh is working on several projects with carbon nanotubes and polymer-derived ceramic material.

One project involves new ways to cook or create a ceramic carbon nanotube material. The conventional way to make this type of material is to take a liquid polymer, pour it into a mold and heat it in an oven until the polymer forms a ceramic.

Singh's team tried a new approach. They are among the first to create their own modified liquid polymer with four ingredients: silicon, boron, carbon and nitrogen. But rather than heating this liquid polymer in an oven, they heated it in a conventional microwave -- the kind used in kitchens. They found that the microwave heats the nanotubes just as well as an oven.

"What we did is reduce the time to construct ceramic," Singh said. "If you use an oven or heater, you have to heat it for awhile. With the microwave, it is fast heating within a few minutes."

Their work -- co-authored with their university colleague William Kuhn, professor of electrical and computer engineering -- recently appeared in the journal Applied Materials and Interfaces, published by the American Chemical Society. Another publication involving conventional processing will appear in the Journal of the American Ceramic Society.

Once this ceramic carbon nanotube material is created, it has multiple applications. Singh's team is involved in a project with the Laser Radiometry Team at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, or NIST, in Boulder, Colo., which works to develop measurement methods for high-power industrial lasers for manufacturing.

Singh's team is assisting the institute in improving how laser power is measured. Currently, laser measurements involve a cone-shaped copper detector covered in carbon paint. The laser shines through the cone, is absorbed by the black paint, heats the copper cone and then heats a waterfall at the detector's back end. By measuring the rising temperature of the water, scientists can determine the energy of the laser.

The Singh team has improved this process by making the cone-shaped detector out of the ceramic carbon nanotube composite material. Because ceramic can withstand high temperatures, it protects the nanotubes, which absorb the laser light to heat the cone.

"We are checking the stability of the material," Singh said. "We are characterizing it and then sending the samples to the NIST to test."

Another project for Singh's team uses the ceramic carbon nanotube material to improve the performance of rechargeable batteries. The material addresses four ways that rechargeable batteries can be improved: having a larger storage capacity, having a longer battery life, recharging quickly and providing a lot of power in a short amount of time.

These ceramic materials can reversibly store lithium, meaning that lithium can go in and come out of it. Current rechargeable batteries use graphite to store lithium. But as the graphite wears down, a battery become less efficient and will stay charged for a shorter amount of time.

The ability to recharge quickly and provide a lot of power in a short amount of time is especially key for electric cars. Many current electric car designs take several hours to recharge and take a long time to accelerate. Scientists wanting to create a battery that can recharge in a few minutes and provide power quickly may now have a solution.

Singh's team has already seen early success with their work: Preliminary research shows that when the ceramic material is used in batteries, it doubles or triples the battery's capacity for high current. The material is also thermodynamically stabile, so it can survive longer cycles.

"It would be really nice to have one material that has high capacity, can be charged quickly and also is stable," Singh said. "With this ceramic material, it should be strong enough so that over time it does not degrade. That's the ultimate goal."

Their battery work will appear later this year in the journal Nanomaterials and Energy, published by the Institution of Civil Engineers. The researchers are currently charging and recharging the batteries for several cycles to understand how long the batteries made from the materials can last.

A final project from Singh's team involves the use of "nano-fingers," which are sharp tungsten needles that can probe and pick up carbon nanotubes. The researchers use these nano-fingers under an electron microscope to perform studies with individual carbon nanotubes and ceramic nanowires.

Singh's research has been supported with $57,000 from the EPSCoR program with the National Science Foundation. His research team consists of two graduate students -- Romil Bhandavat and Lamuel David, both doctoral students in mechanical engineering, India,-- and one undergraduate student, Uriel Barrera, a sophomore in mechanical engineering, Olathe.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Source:
Gurpreet Singh
785-532-7085


Jennifer Tidball
785-532-0847

Copyright © Kansas State University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

'Exotic' material is like a switch when super thin April 18th, 2014

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Oxford Instruments Asylum Research Introduces the MFP-3D InfinityTM AFM Featuring Powerful New Capabilities and Stunning High Performance April 18th, 2014

Conductive Inks: booming to $2.8 billion by 2024 April 17th, 2014

Harris & Harris Group Continues Its Blog Series to Highlight Most Impactful Portfolio Companies With Champions Oncology, Inc. April 17th, 2014

Graphene

Thinnest feasible membrane produced April 17th, 2014

Scientists observe quantum superconductor-metal transition and superconducting glass: A team including MIPT physicist observed quantum superconductor-metal transition and superconducting glass April 16th, 2014

Better solar cells, better LED light and vast optical possibilities April 12th, 2014

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

'Exotic' material is like a switch when super thin April 18th, 2014

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Novel stapled peptide nanoparticle combination prevents RSV infection, study finds April 17th, 2014

INSCX™ exchange to present Exchange trade reporting mechanism for engineered nanomaterials (NMs) to UK regulation agencies, insurers and upstream/downstream users April 17th, 2014

Nanotubes/Buckyballs

Effects of Carbon Nanotubes Studied on Pregnant Mothers April 12th, 2014

Nanotech Business Review 2013-2014 April 9th, 2014

Scientists Succeed in Simultaneous Determination of Acetaminophen, Codeine in Drug Samples April 9th, 2014

Rebar technique strengthens case for graphene: Rice University lab makes hybrid nanotube-graphene material that promises to simplify manufacturing April 7th, 2014

Sensors

Transparent Conductive Films and Sensors Are Hot Segments in Printed Electronics: Start-ups in these fields show above-average momentum, while companies working on emissive displays such as OLED are fading, Lux Research says April 17th, 2014

Biologists Develop Nanosensors to Visualize Movements and Distribution of Plant Stress Hormone April 15th, 2014

LetiDays Grenoble to Present Multiple Perspectives on Development, Challenges and Markets for the IoT April 14th, 2014

In latest generation of tiny biosensors, size isn't everything: UCLA researchers overturn conventional wisdom on nanowire-based diagnostic devices April 11th, 2014

Discoveries

'Exotic' material is like a switch when super thin April 18th, 2014

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Thinnest feasible membrane produced April 17th, 2014

More effective kidney stone treatment, from the macroscopic to the nanoscale April 17th, 2014

Materials/Metamaterials

Thinnest feasible membrane produced April 17th, 2014

INSCX™ exchange to present Exchange trade reporting mechanism for engineered nanomaterials (NMs) to UK regulation agencies, insurers and upstream/downstream users April 17th, 2014

Engineers develop new materials for hydrogen storage April 15th, 2014

Industrial Nanotech, Inc. Lands First Major Order from Pemex, Mexico’s State-Owned Oil and Gas Company April 14th, 2014

Announcements

'Exotic' material is like a switch when super thin April 18th, 2014

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Oxford Instruments Asylum Research Introduces the MFP-3D InfinityTM AFM Featuring Powerful New Capabilities and Stunning High Performance April 18th, 2014

Transparent Conductive Films and Sensors Are Hot Segments in Printed Electronics: Start-ups in these fields show above-average momentum, while companies working on emissive displays such as OLED are fading, Lux Research says April 17th, 2014

Automotive/Transportation

Relieving electric vehicle range anxiety with improved batteries: Lithium-sulfur batteries last longer with nanomaterial-packed cathode April 16th, 2014

Tiny particles could help verify goods: Chemical engineers hope smartphone-readable microparticles could crack down on counterfeiting April 15th, 2014

Nanotech Business Review 2013-2014 April 9th, 2014

Heat-conducting polymer cools hot electronic devices at 200 degrees C March 31st, 2014

Battery Technology/Capacitors/Generators/Piezoelectrics/Thermoelectrics

Transparent Conductive Films and Sensors Are Hot Segments in Printed Electronics: Start-ups in these fields show above-average momentum, while companies working on emissive displays such as OLED are fading, Lux Research says April 17th, 2014

Relieving electric vehicle range anxiety with improved batteries: Lithium-sulfur batteries last longer with nanomaterial-packed cathode April 16th, 2014

Catching the (Invisible) Wave: UC Santa Barbara researchers create a unique semiconductor that manipulates light in the invisible infrared/terahertz range, paving the way for new and enhanced applications April 11th, 2014

Nanotech Business Review 2013-2014 April 9th, 2014

Photonics/Optics/Lasers

High-temperature plasmonics eyed for solar, computer innovation April 17th, 2014

Scientists Capture Ultrafast Snapshots of Light-Driven Superconductivity: X-rays reveal how rapidly vanishing 'charge stripes' may be behind laser-induced high-temperature superconductivity April 16th, 2014

Lumerical files a provisional patent that extends the standard eigenmode expansion propagation technique to better address waveguide component design. Lumerical’s EME propagation tool will address a wide set of waveguide applications in silicon photonics and integrated optics April 16th, 2014

Near-field Nanophotonics Workshop in Boston April 14th, 2014

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE







  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More














ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2014 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE