Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors



Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > Research by CU-Boulder physicists creates ‘recipe book’ for building new materials

This image shows polarized light interacting with a particle injected into a liquid crystal medium. Photo by CU-Boulder scientists Bohdan Senyuk and Ivan Smalyukh.
This image shows polarized light interacting with a particle injected into a liquid crystal medium.

Photo by CU-Boulder scientists Bohdan Senyuk and Ivan Smalyukh.

Abstract:
By showing that tiny particles injected into a liquid crystal medium adhere to existing mathematical theorems, physicists at the University of Colorado Boulder have opened the door for the creation of a host of new materials with properties that do not exist in nature.

Research by CU-Boulder physicists creates ‘recipe book’ for building new materials

Boulder, CO | Posted on December 28th, 2012

The findings show that researchers can create a "recipe book" to build new materials of sorts using topology, a major mathematical field that describes the properties that do not change when an object is stretched, bent or otherwise "continuously deformed." Published online Dec. 23 in the journal Nature, the study also is the first to experimentally show that some of the most important topological theorems hold up in the real material world, said CU-Boulder physics department Assistant Professor Ivan Smalyukh, a study senior author.

The research could lead to upgrades in liquid crystal displays, like those used in laptops and television screens, to allow them to interact with light in new and different ways. One possibility is to create liquid crystal displays that are even more energy efficient, Smalyukh said, extending the battery life for the devices they're attached to.

The research was funded in part by Smalyukh's Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, which he received from President Barack Obama in 2010. And the research supports the goals laid out by the White House's Materials Genome Initiative, Smalyukh said, which seeks to deploy "new advanced materials at least twice as fast as possible today, at a fraction of the cost."

Smalyukh, postdoctoral researcher Bohdan Senyuk, and doctoral student Qingkun Liu set up the experiment by creating colloids — solutions in which tiny particles are dispersed, but not dissolved, throughout a host medium. Colloids are common in everyday life and include substances such as milk, jelly, paint, smoke, fog and shaving cream.

For this study, the physicists created a colloid by injecting tiny particles into a liquid crystal — a substance that behaves somewhat like a liquid and somewhat like a solid. The researchers injected differently shaped particles that represent fundamental building-block shapes in topology. That means each of the particles is distinct from the others and one cannot be turned into the other without cutting or gluing. Objects that look differently can still be considered the same in topology if one can be turned into the other by stretching or bending - types of "continuous deformations."

In the field of topology, for example, an object shaped like a donut and an object shaped like a coffee cup are treated the same. That's because a donut shape can be "continuously deformed" into a coffee cup by indenting one side of the donut. But a donut-shaped object cannot be turned into a sphere or a cylinder because the hole in the donut would have to be eliminated by "gluing" the sides of the donut back together or by "cutting" the side of the donut.

Once injected into a liquid crystal, the particles behaved as predicted by topology. "Our study shows that interaction between particles and molecular alignment in liquid crystals follows the predictions of topological theorems, making it possible to use these theorems in designing new composite materials with unique properties that cannot be encountered in nature or synthesized by chemists," Smalyukh said. "These findings lay the groundwork for new applications in experimental studies of low-dimensional topology, with important potential ramifications for many branches of science and technology."

The study was co-authored by Sailing He of Zhejiang University in China; Randall Kamien and Tom Lubensky of the University of Pennsylvania, and Robert Kusner of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Ivan Smalyukh

303-492-7277

Laura Snider
CU media relations
303-735-0528

Copyright © University of Colorado at Boulder

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

Atom-thick CCD could capture images: Rice University scientists develop two-dimensional, light-sensitive material December 20th, 2014

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Instant-start computers possible with new breakthrough December 19th, 2014

Aculon Hires New Business Development Director December 19th, 2014

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

Unraveling the light of fireflies December 17th, 2014

TCL Launches World’s Most Advanced TV in the World’s Largest Market: New Quantum Dot TVs with Color IQ™ Optics Deliver OLED-Quality Color at a Fraction of the Price December 15th, 2014

Dartmouth researchers create 'green' process to reduce molecular switching waste December 15th, 2014

Stacking two-dimensional materials may lower cost of semiconductor devices December 11th, 2014

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Atom-thick CCD could capture images: Rice University scientists develop two-dimensional, light-sensitive material December 20th, 2014

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Switching to spintronics: Berkeley Lab reports on electric field switching of ferromagnetism at room temp December 17th, 2014

ORNL microscopy pencils patterns in polymers at the nanoscale December 17th, 2014

Discoveries

Atom-thick CCD could capture images: Rice University scientists develop two-dimensional, light-sensitive material December 20th, 2014

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Instant-start computers possible with new breakthrough December 19th, 2014

Iranian Scientists Use Nanotechnology to Increase Power, Energy of Supercapacitors December 18th, 2014

Materials/Metamaterials

Aculon Hires New Business Development Director December 19th, 2014

ORNL microscopy pencils patterns in polymers at the nanoscale December 17th, 2014

Pb islands in a sea of graphene magnetise the material of the future December 16th, 2014

Graphene Applied in Production of Recyclable Electrodes December 13th, 2014

Announcements

Atom-thick CCD could capture images: Rice University scientists develop two-dimensional, light-sensitive material December 20th, 2014

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Instant-start computers possible with new breakthrough December 19th, 2014

Aculon Hires New Business Development Director December 19th, 2014

Grants/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

SUNY Poly NanoCollege Faculty Member Selected as American Physical Society Fellow: SUNY Poly Associate Professor of Nanoscience Dr. Vincent LaBella Recognized for Significant Technological Innovations that Enable Interactive Learning December 17th, 2014

“Line dancing bacteria win the 2014 Dolomite and Lab on a Chip Video Competition” December 16th, 2014

Lifeboat Foundation gives 2014 Guardian Award to Elon Musk December 16th, 2014

UCLA engineers first to detect and measure individual DNA molecules using smartphone microscope December 15th, 2014

Research partnerships

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Unraveling the light of fireflies December 17th, 2014

Scientists trace nanoparticles from plants to caterpillars: Rice University study examines how nanoparticles behave in food chain December 16th, 2014

FEI and Oregon Health & Science University Install a Complete Correlative Microscopy Workflow in Newly Built Collaborative Science Facility December 16th, 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