A new highly sensitive method of measurement allowed physicists form Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin for Materials and Energy to directly detect defects in solar cells with atomic resolution. This findings can be used to optimize solar cells’ efficiency and decrease production costs.
HZB physicists have managed to localize defects in amorphous/crystalline silicon heterojunction solar cells. Now, for the first time ever, using computer simulations at Paderborn University, the scientists were ........ Read more »
George, B., Behrends, J., Schnegg, A., Schulze, T., Fehr, M., Korte, L., Rech, B., Lips, K., Rohrmüller, M., Rauls, E.... (2013) Atomic Structure of Interface States in Silicon Heterojunction Solar Cells. Physical Review Letters, 110(13). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.136803
While potentially much more efficient, than conventional photovoltaic systems, quantum dot solar cells are still at a pre-commercialization stage. In a new paper, to be published in the journal Advanced Materials, researchers propose to improve quantum dot solar cell design with nanowires.... Read more »
Jean, J., Chang, S., Brown, P., Cheng, J., Rekemeyer, P., Bawendi, M., Gradečak, S., & Bulović, V. (2013) ZnO Nanowire Arrays for Enhanced Photocurrent in PbS Quantum Dot Solar Cells. Advanced Materials. DOI: 10.1002/adma.201204192
A technology developed by the HiFlex research project promises flexible, lightweight, on-the-go charging for mobile electronics and remote applications. New organic photovoltaic module (OPV) is relatively cheap and can effectively function under various light conditions.... Read more »
Gevorgyan, S., Medford, A., Bundgaard, E., Sapkota, S., Schleiermacher, H., Zimmermann, B., Würfel, U., Chafiq, A., Lira-Cantu, M., Swonke, T.... (2011) An inter-laboratory stability study of roll-to-roll coated flexible polymer solar modules. Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, 95(5), 1398-1416. DOI: 10.1016/j.solmat.2011.01.010
Well, it’s no secret that there are some major issues with our current dependency on fossil fuels. First of all, they don’t last forever, so at some point we’re going to run out (don’t worry, not any time soon). Second … Continue reading →... Read more »
Blumer-Schuette Sara E, Kataeva Irina, Westpheling Janet, Adams Michael WW, & Kelly Robert M. (2008) Extremely thermophilic microorganisms for biomass conversion: status and prospects. Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 19(3), 210-217. DOI: 10.1016/j.copbio.2008.04.007
Hamilton-Brehm S. D., Mosher J. J., Vishnivetskaya T., Podar M., Carroll S., Allman S., Phelps T. J., Keller M., & Elkins J. G. (2010) Caldicellulosiruptor obsidiansis sp. nov., an Anaerobic, Extremely Thermophilic, Cellulolytic Bacterium Isolated from Obsidian Pool, Yellowstone National Park. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 76(4), 1014-1020. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.01903-09
Blumer-Schuette S. E., Giannone R. J., Zurawski J. V., Ozdemir I., Ma Q., Yin Y., Xu Y., Kataeva I., Poole F. L., & Adams M. W. W. (2012) Caldicellulosiruptor Core and Pangenomes Reveal Determinants for Noncellulosomal Thermophilic Deconstruction of Plant Biomass. Journal of Bacteriology, 194(15), 4015-4028. DOI: 10.1128/JB.00266-12
Tritium, which is used in fusion reactors, is a radioactive isotope of hydrogen, and as such is shares the same chemical properties. Like hydrogen, it can easily permeate a large number of materials. In a colloquium delivered at JET (Joint European Torus) last week, Assistant Professor Takumi Chikada from the University of Tokyo outlined progress in research of ceramic coating that could contain tritium and protect tritium-carrying pipework.... Read more »
Chikada, T., Suzuki, A., Kobayashi, T., Maier, H., Terai, T., & Muroga, T. (2011) Microstructure change and deuterium permeation behavior of erbium oxide coating. Journal of Nuclear Materials, 417(1-3), 1241-1244. DOI: 10.1016/j.jnucmat.2010.12.283
The ultrafast, ultrabright X-ray pulses of the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) have enabled unprecedented views of a catalyst in action, an important step in the effort to develop cleaner and more efficient energy sources.
Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory used LCLS, together with computerized simulations, to reveal surprising details of a short-lived early state in a chemical reaction occurring at the surface of a catalyst sampl........ Read more »
Andy Freeberg. (2013) Breakthrough Research Shows Chemical Reaction in Real Time. SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory News. info:/
"The connection with the sun coming up is a misconception," asserts an article in the rural lifestyle magazine Grit. "Roosters crow all the time." Some roosters in Japan would like to loudly disagree. They've shown scientists that their crowing has everything to do with what time of day it is—something they don't even need the sun to know.
Tsuyoshi Shimmura and Takashi Yoshimura, both of Nagoya University in Japan, investigated whether a rooster's crowing is tied to its circ........ Read more »
Shimmura, T., & Yoshimura, T. (2013) Circadian clock determines the timing of rooster crowing. Current Biology, 23(6). DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2013.02.015
A dye-sensitized solar cell is simple to make using conventional roll-printing techniques, is semi-flexible and semi-transparent which offers a variety of uses not applicable to glass-based systems, and most of the materials used are low-cost. However its conversion efficiency is less than the best thin-film cells. Scientists at the Uppsala University now propose a new electrolyte component—cobalt complexes—to make dye-sensitized solar cells more efficient.... Read more »
Feldt, S., Cappel, U., Johansson, E., Boschloo, G., & Hagfeldt, A. (2010) Characterization of Surface Passivation by Poly(methylsiloxane) for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells Employing the Ferrocene Redox Couple. The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 114(23), 10551-10558. DOI: 10.1021/jp100957p
A new version of lithium-sulphur battery that could potentially increase the range of electric cars to several hundred kilometers is being developed at the Baosteel-Australia Joint Research and Development Centre based at The University of Queensland (UQ) in Brisbane, Australia.... Read more »
Zhou, G., Wang, D., Li, F., Hou, P., Yin, L., Liu, C., Lu, G., Gentle, I., & Cheng, H. (2012) A flexible nanostructured sulphur–carbon nanotube cathode with high rate performance for Li-S batteries. Energy , 5(10), 8901. DOI: 10.1039/c2ee22294a
Plain-looking but inherently strange crystalline materials called 3D topological insulators (TIs) are all the rage in materials science. Even at room temperature, a single chunk of TI is a good insulator in the bulk, yet behaves like a metal on its surface.
Researchers find TIs exciting partly because the electrons that flow swiftly across their surfaces are “spin polarized”: the electron’s spin is locked to its momentum, perpendicular to the direction of travel. These inter........ Read more »
Paul Preuss. (2013) Surprising Control over Photoelectrons from a Topological Insulator. Berkeley Lab News Center. info:/
I’ve already written several times about the bacteria in the clouds and what they do up there; now, a new …Continue reading »... Read more »
Deleon-Rodriguez N, Lathem TL, Rodriguez-R LM, Barazesh JM, Anderson BE, Beyersdorf AJ, Ziemba LD, Bergin M, Nenes A, & Konstantinidis KT. (2013) Microbiome of the upper troposphere: Species composition and prevalence, effects of tropical storms, and atmospheric implications. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 110(7), 2575-80. PMID: 23359712
We have all heard of these extremophiles that can thrive in extreme heat, cold, desiccation, acidity, or maybe even extreme radiation. However, the list of extremophiles grows thin as you add multiple life threatening conditions to the fray. Enter: the … Continue reading →... Read more »
Bauermeister Anja, Moeller Ralf, Reitz Günther, Sommer Suzanne, & Rettberg Petra. (2010) Effect of relative humidity on Deinococcus radiodurans' resistance to prolonged desiccation, heat, ionizing, germicidal, and environmentally relevant UV radiation. Microbial ecology. PMID: 21161207
George N. P., Ngo K. V., Chitteni-Pattu S., Norais C. A., Battista J. R., Cox M. M., & Keck J. L. (2012) Structure and Cellular Dynamics of Deinococcus radiodurans Single-stranded DNA (ssDNA)-binding Protein (SSB)-DNA Complexes. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 287(26), 22123-22132. DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M112.367573
I spent the day with Patrick Stewart. Not the actor, though both are from England. Patrick Shaw Stewart, to be more specific. He’s one of the founders of Douglas Instruments Ltd. and was here to show us the Oryx, a … Continue reading →... Read more »
Oswald Christine, Smits Sander H. J., Bremer Erhard, & Schmitt Lutz. (2008) Microseeding – A Powerful Tool for Crystallizing Proteins Complexed with Hydrolyzable Substrates. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 9(7), 1131-1141. DOI: 10.3390/ijms9071131
OK, just to make sure we're straight on this matter:I am not endorsing chelation therapy for autism in this post.Carry on Private...I might have said it before but a few areas of the autism landscape have been, and still, are a bit of a sticking point when it comes to their discussion. Mention for example bowel issues and autism and, in at least some quarters, you can see the eyebrows raising and the eyes beginning their short rolling journey around the eye socket. This despite the fact that bow........ Read more »
Blaucok-Busch E, Amin OR, Dessoki HH, & Rabah T. (2012) Efficacy of DMSA Therapy in a Sample of Arab Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder. Maedica (Buchar), 7(3), 214-221. info:/
Heat shock is the effect of subjecting a cell to a higher temperature than that of the ideal metabolic temperature of the organism. One of the most typical responses of the cells is transcriptional up-regulation of genes encoding heat shock … Continue reading →... Read more »
Paul S., Singh C., Mishra S., & Chaudhuri T. K. (2007) The 69 kDa Escherichia coli maltodextrin glucosidase does not get encapsulated underneath GroES and folds through trans mechanism during GroEL/GroES-assisted folding. The FASEB Journal, 21(11), 2874-2885. DOI: 10.1096/fj.06-7958com
TRUSCOTT Kaye N., HOJ Peter B., & SCOPES Robert K. (1994) Purification and characterization of chaperonin 60 and chaperonin 10 from the anaerobic thermophile Thermoanaerobacter brockii. European Journal of Biochemistry, 222(2), 277-284. DOI: 10.1111/j.1432-1033.1994.tb18866.x
Yamauchi Seiji, Ueda Yuya, Matsumoto Mika, Inoue Umihiko, & Hayashi Hidenori. (2012) Distinct features of protein folding by the GroEL system from a psychrophilic bacterium, Colwellia psychrerythraea 34H. Extremophiles, 16(6), 871-882. DOI: 10.1007/s00792-012-0483-7
As part of their review of autism research in 2012, the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (shortened to the very catchy SFARI) had an interesting blogpost on all things drug development with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in mind.It was an interesting entry insofar as they had categorised the various medicines potentially indicated for some of the symptoms of ASD according to the stage of drug development including some formulations that have previously been fodder for this blog........ Read more »
Chez MG, Burton Q, Dowling T, Chang M, Khanna P, & Kramer C. (2007) Memantine as adjunctive therapy in children diagnosed with autistic spectrum disorders: an observation of initial clinical response and maintenance tolerability. Journal of child neurology, 22(5), 574-9. PMID: 17690064
Have you ever noticed that buying a tomato (or a number of other fruits and vegetables) that has anything resembling taste can be very difficult? It’s not just because it’s winter. Most tomatoes sold in supermarkets are bred to be bland, and some scientists are trying to find a way back to good taste.... Read more »
Tieman D, Bliss P, McIntyre LM, Blandon-Ubeda A, Bies D, Odabasi AZ, Rodríguez GR, van der Knaap E, Taylor MG, Goulet C.... (2012) The chemical interactions underlying tomato flavor preferences. Current biology : CB, 22(11), 1035-9. PMID: 22633806
Many happy returns @ Paul WhiteleyQuestioning Answers is 2 years old today (19th February 2013). Happy Birthday to 'me', or should that be 'it'?Still a relative newcomer to the blogosphere but still churning out posts on all things autism research and beyond. Just in case you thought that I did actually bake a cake for the occasion, I didn't. But if I had have done (and yes a man can make a cake), it would have looked like the cake shown alongside. So please loyal readers, take an imaginary bite........ Read more »
Tu WJ, Chen H, & He J. (2012) Application of LC-MS/MS analysis of plasma amino acids profiles in children with autism. Journal of clinical biochemistry and nutrition, 51(3), 248-9. PMID: 23170055
In our Protein Journal Club this semester, we are studying proteins from extremophiles. As their name suggests, extremophiles are organisms that can survive under extreme conditions. These extreme conditions include acidic or basic environments, severe hot or cold environments, lack of … Continue reading →... Read more »
Aghajari Nushin, Haser Richard, Feller Georges, & Gerday Charles. (1998) Crystal structures of the psychrophilic α-amylase from Alteromonas haloplanctis in its native form and complexed with an inhibitor. Protein Science, 7(6), 1481-1481. DOI: 10.1002/pro.5560070626
Aghajari Nushin, Feller Georges, Gerday Charles, & Haser Richard. (1998) Structures of the psychrophilic Alteromonas haloplanctis α-amylase give insights into cold adaptation at a molecular level. Structure, 6(12), 1503-1516. DOI: 10.1016/S0969-2126(98)00149-X
Feller Georges. (2010) Protein stability and enzyme activity at extreme biological temperatures. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter, 22(32), 323101. DOI: 10.1088/0953-8984/22/32/323101
Gilis Dimitri. (2006) In Silico Analysis of the Thermodynamic Stability Changes of Psychrophilic and Mesophilic α-Amylases upon Exhaustive Single-Site Mutations. ChemInform, 37(31). DOI: 10.1002/chin.200631215
Hey Julie,Thanks for the run down on ScienceOnline and ‘Lend a Paw’ month. I completed the survey about my cat’s behaviour, it was quick and easy to do. I also liked your stroking video, but I’ll get back to that later, right now I need to tell you how dog poo (I think you usually say ‘poop’ in the USA?) is turning green.Dog poo is turning greenIt’s turning green and it’s thanks to the power of science. Or perhaps it’s the science of power? It’s easy to ........ Read more »
Miller Rohan, & Howell Gwyneth V.J. (2008) Regulating consumption with bite: Building a contemporary framework for urban dog management. Journal of Business Research, 61(5), 525-531. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbusres.2007.07.006
Wells D. L. (2006) Factors Influencing Owners' Reactions to Their Dogs' Fouling. Environment and Behavior, 38(5), 707-714. DOI: 10.1177/0013916505284794
Okoroigwe E.C., Ibeto C.N., & Okpara C.G. (2010) Comparative Study of the Potential of Dog Waste for Biogas Production. Trends in Applied Sciences Research, 5(1), 71-77. DOI: 10.3923/tasr.2010.71.77
Nemiroff Leah. (2007) Design, Testing and Implementation of a Large-Scale Urban Dog Waste Composting Program. Compost Science , 15(4), 237-242. info:other/http://montrealndgdogrun.org/image/downloads/compost studies.pdf
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