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  • richardmitnick 1:53 pm on February 1, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "New type of solar cell is being tested in space", Alternative to silicon in the future, , , Nanoengineering, Nanotechnology, , ,   

    From Lund University [Lunds universitet](SE) Via “TechXplore” at “Science X”: “New type of solar cell is being tested in space” 

    From Lund University [Lunds universitet](SE)

    Via

    “TechXplore” at “Science X”

    1.31.23

    1
    Nanowires in three materials imaged by a scanning electron microscope. A thread is a thousand times thinner than a strand of hair. The red and blue colour shows the direction of the current, and that the nanowires work as a tandem solar cell. Credit: Lund University.

    Physics researchers at Lund University in Sweden recently succeeded in constructing small solar radiation-collecting antennas—nanowires—using three different materials that are a better match for the solar spectrum compared with today’s silicon solar cells. As the nanowires are light and require little material per unit of area, they are now to be installed for tests on satellites, which are powered by solar cells and where efficiency, in combination with low weight, is the most important factor. The new solar cells were sent into space a few days ago.

    A group of nanoengineering researchers at Lund University working on solar cells made a breakthrough last year when they succeeded in building photovoltaic nanowires with three different band gaps. This, in other words, means that one and the same nanowire consists of three different materials that react to different parts of solar light. The results have been published in Materials Today Energy and subsequently in more detail in Nano Research.

    “The big challenge was to get the current to transfer between the materials. It took more than ten years, but it worked in the end,” says Magnus Borgström, professor of solid state physics, who wrote the articles with the then doctoral student Lukas Hrachowina.

    There are some ten research teams around the world who are actively focusing on nanowire solar cells.

    “The challenge has been to combine different band gaps in the solar cells and that door has thus now opened at last,” says Magnus Borgström.

    Alternative to silicon in the future

    Solar cells with different band gaps, known as tandem solar cells, are so far mainly found on satellites and are the subject of intensive research. The aim of the research is to considerably increase efficiency, to perhaps double that of today’s commercial silicon solar cells (around 20%).

    “Silicon solar cells have soon reached their maximum limit for efficiency. Therefore, the focus has now shifted to developing tandem solar cells instead. The variants fitted on satellites are too expensive to put on a roof,” says Magnus Borgström.

    The most common way to build tandem solar cells is to synthesize different semiconducting materials on top of each other, materials that can absorb different parts of the solar spectrum. Silicon-based tandem solar cells are attracting a lot of interest and involve laying thin, semi-transparent films of other light-capturing material on top of the silicon.

    The researchers in Lund use a slightly different approach. They have developed a method in which they build extremely thin rods of semiconducting material on a substrate. The advantage is a small amount of material per unit area, which could reduce production costs and become a more sustainable alternative.

    The nanometer-thick rods consist of three materials that contain different amounts of indium, arsenic, gallium and phosphorus. In the lab, the researchers have so far achieved an efficiency of 16.7%. A colleague, Yang Chen, has shown that the nanowire solar cells have the potential to reach 47% efficiency using the current structure. Achieving even higher efficiency requires more band gaps.

    In the next step, he and his colleagues will optimize the triple diodes by improving the tunnel junctions that connect the different materials in the structure and attempt to reduce the effect of the nanowires’ surface, which is very important on a nanoscale.

    Besides their improved light absorption, the nanowire solar cells are characterized by their durability as they can, for example, withstand the harmful radiation in space better than the corresponding film-based tandem solar cells.

    “A sheet of nanowires can be likened to a very sparse bed of nails. If some aggressive protons came along, which happens now and then, they would probably land between the wires and if they happened to eliminate some wires, it would not matter very much. The damage could be worse if they land on a regular thin film.”

    Testing in space during the spring

    These advantages led to the nanowire solar cells being recently fitted on a research satellite, which was sent into space in the second week of January by the researchers’ collaboration partners at the California Institute of Technology.

    “A lot of our digital communication is controlled by satellites, which in turn are powered by solar cells. Satellites convey GPS, TV transmissions, data traffic, mobile phone calls and weather data.”

    The satellite will be in orbit during the spring, and the results are expected to be received on an ongoing basis.

    Magnus Borgström thinks tandem solar cells will also wind up on Earth in the long term but that, at least initially, silicon-free solar cells will be used in niche applications such as clothes, windows and decor.

    Materials Today Energy

    Nano Research

    See the full article here.

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    Lund University [Lunds universitet] (SE) is a prestigious university in Sweden and one of northern Europe’s oldest universities. The university is located in the city of Lund in the province of Scania, Sweden. It traces its roots back to 1425, when a Franciscan studium generale was founded in Lund. After Sweden won Scania from Denmark in the 1658 Treaty of Roskilde, the university was officially founded in 1666 on the location of the old studium generale next to Lund Cathedral.

    Lund University has nine faculties with additional campuses in the cities of Malmö and Helsingborg, with around 44,000 students in 270 different programmes and 1,400 freestanding courses. The university has 640 partner universities in nearly 70 countries and it belongs to the League of European Research Universities (EU) as well as the global Universitas 21 network. Lund University is consistently ranked among the world’s top 100 universities.

    Two major facilities for materials research are in Lund University: MAX IV, a synchrotron radiation laboratory – inaugurated in June 2016, and European Spallation Source (ESS), a new European facility that will provide up to 100 times brighter neutron beams than existing facilities today, to be starting to produce neutrons in 2023.

    The university centers on the Lundagård park adjacent to the Lund Cathedral, with various departments spread in different locations in town, but mostly concentrated in a belt stretching north from the park connecting to the university hospital area and continuing out to the northeastern periphery of the town, where one finds the large campus of the Faculty of Engineering.

    Research centres

    The university is organized into more than 20 institutes and research centres, such as:

    Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies (LUCSUS)
    Biomedical Centre
    Centre for Biomechanics
    Centre for Chemistry and Chemical Engineering – Kemicentrum
    Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies
    Centre for European Studies
    Centre for Geographical Information Systems (GIS Centrum)
    Centre for Innovation, Research and Competence in the Learning Economy (CIRCLE)
    Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University
    Centre for Molecular Protein Science
    Centre for Risk Analysis and Management (LUCRAM)
    International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics at Lund University (IIIEE)
    Lund Functional Food Science Centre
    Lund University Diabetes Centre (LUDC)
    MAX lab – Accelerator physics, synchrotron radiation and nuclear physics research
    Pufendorf Institute
    Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
    Swedish South Asian Studies Network

     
  • richardmitnick 11:33 am on January 21, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "New method for designing tiny 3D materials could make fuel cells more efficient", , , , Nanotechnology, ,   

    From The University of New South Wales (AU) : “New method for designing tiny 3D materials could make fuel cells more efficient” 

    UNSW bloc

    From The University of New South Wales (AU)

    1.18.23
    Ben Knight

    Researchers have developed an innovative technique for creating nanoscale materials with unique chemical and physical properties.

    1
    Authors of the study Professor Richard Tilley and Dr Lucy Gloag. Photo: Supplied.

    Scientists from UNSW Sydney have demonstrated a novel technique for creating tiny 3D materials that could eventually make fuel cells like hydrogen batteries cheaper and more sustainable.

    In the study published in Science Advances [below], researchers from the School of Chemistry at UNSW Science show it’s possible to sequentially ‘grow’ interconnected hierarchical structures in 3D at the nanoscale which have unique chemical and physical properties to support energy conversion reactions.

    In chemistry, hierarchical structures are configurations of units like molecules within an organization of other units that themselves may be ordered. Similar phenomena can be seen in the natural world, like in flower petals and tree branches. But where these structures have extraordinary potential is at a level beyond the visibility of the human eye – at the nanoscale.

    Using conventional methods, scientists have found it challenging to replicate these 3D structures with metal components on the nanoscale. To understand just how small these tiny 3D materials need to be – in one centimetre, there are 10 millimetres. If you were to count one million tiny segments in just one of those millimetres, each of those would be one nanometre or nm.

    “To date, scientists have been able to assemble hierarchical-type structures on the micrometre or molecular scale,” says Professor Richard Tilley, Director of the Electron Microscope Unit at UNSW and senior author of the study. “But to get the level of precision needed to assemble on the nanoscale, we needed to develop an entirely new bottom-up methodology.”

    The researchers used chemical synthesis, an approach that constructs complex chemical compounds from simpler ones. They were able to carefully grow hexagonal crystal–structured nickel branches on cubic crystal–structured cores to create 3D hierarchical structures with dimensions of around 10-20 nanometres.

    2
    Professor Tilley and Dr Gloag at a glove box, which is used in the preparation of the reaction when synthesising the nanostructures. Photo: Supplied.

    The resulting interconnected 3D nanostructure has a high surface area, high conductivity due to the direct connection of a metallic core and branches, and has surfaces that can be chemically modified. These properties make it an ideal electrocatalyst support – a substance that helps speed up the rate of reactions – in the oxygen evolution reaction, a crucial process in energy conversion. The nanostructure’s properties were examined using electrochemical analysis from state-of-the-art electron microscopes provided by the Electron Microscope Unit.

    “Growing the material step by step is a contrast to what we do assembling structures at the micrometre level, which is starting with bulk material and etching it down,” says the lead author of the study Dr Lucy Gloag, a Postdoctoral Fellow at the School of Chemistry, UNSW Science. “This new method allows us to have excellent control over the conditions, which lets us keep all of the components ultra-small – on the nanoscale – where the unique catalytic properties exist.”

    Nanocatalysts in fuel cells

    In conventional catalysts, which are often spherical, most atoms are stuck in the middle of the sphere. There are very few atoms on the surface, meaning most of the material is wasted as it can’t take part in the reaction environment.

    These new 3D nanostructures are engineered to expose more atoms to the reaction environment, which can facilitate more efficient and effective catalysis for energy conversion, Prof. Tilley says.

    “If this is used in a fuel cell or battery, having a higher surface area for the catalyst means the reaction will be more efficient when converting hydrogen into electricity,” Prof. Tilley says.

    Dr Gloag says it means that less of the material needs to be used for the reaction.

    “It will eventually decrease the costs as well, making energy production more sustainable and ultimately shifting our dependence further away from fossil fuels.”

    In the next research stage, the scientists will look to modify the surface of the material with platinum, which is a superior catalytic metal though more expensive. About a sixth of the cost of an electric car alone is the platinum powering the fuel cell.

    “These exceptionally high surface areas would support a material like platinum to be layered on in individual atoms, so we have the absolute best use of these expensive metals in a reaction environment,” Prof. Tilley says.

    Science Advances
    See the science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct.

    U NSW Campus

    The University of New South Wales is an Australian public university with its largest campus in the Sydney suburb of Kensington.

    Established in 1949, UNSW is a research university, ranked 44th in the world in the 2021 QS World University Rankings and 67th in the world in the 2021 Times Higher Education World University Rankings. UNSW is one of the founding members of the Group of Eight, a coalition of Australian research-intensive universities, and of Universitas 21, a global network of research universities. It has international exchange and research partnerships with over 200 universities around the world.

    According to the 2021 QS World University Rankings by Subject, UNSW is ranked top 20 in the world for Law, Accounting and Finance, and 1st in Australia for Mathematics, Engineering and Technology. UNSW also leads Australia in Medicine, where the median ATAR (Australian university entrance examination results) of its Medical School students is higher than any other Australian medical school. UNSW enrolls the highest number of Australia’s top 500 high school students academically, and produces more millionaire graduates than any other Australian university.

    The university comprises seven faculties, through which it offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. The main campus is in the Sydney suburb of Kensington, 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) from the Sydney CBD. The creative arts faculty, UNSW Art & Design, is located in Paddington, and subcampuses are located in the Sydney CBD as well as several other suburbs, including Randwick and Coogee. Research stations are located throughout the state of New South Wales.

    The university’s second largest campus, known as UNSW Canberra at ADFA (formerly known as UNSW at ADFA), is situated in Canberra, in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). ADFA is the military academy of the Australian Defense Force, and UNSW Canberra is the only national academic institution with a defense focus.

    Research centres

    The university has a number of purpose-built research facilities, including:

    UNSW Lowy Cancer Research Centre is Australia’s first facility bringing together researchers in childhood and adult cancers, as well as one of the country’s largest cancer-research facilities, housing up to 400 researchers.
    The Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre is a centre for the faculties of science, medicine, and engineering. It is used to study the structure and composition of biological, chemical, and physical materials.
    UNSW Canberra Cyber is a cyber-security research and teaching centre.
    The Sino-Australian Research Centre for Coastal Management (SARCCM) has a multidisciplinary focus, and works collaboratively with the Ocean University of China [中國海洋大學](CN) in coastal management research.

     
  • richardmitnick 10:26 pm on January 18, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Nanotechnology, , , , , "A new and better technique for X-ray laser pulses", The decisive trick is that the light is then sent through a gas in order to change its properties in a targeted manner., "High Harmonic Generation", A more powerful method: an ytterbium laser.   

    From The Vienna University of Technology [Technische Universität Wien](AT) : “A new and better technique for X-ray laser pulses” 

    From The Vienna University of Technology [Technische Universität Wien](AT)

    1.18.23

    Text
    Florian Aigner
     

    Contact

    Paolo Carpeggiani, PhD
    Institute of Photonics
    Vienna University of Technology
    paolo.carpeggiani@tuwien.ac.at

    Significantly simpler and at the same time much more efficient than before: TU Wien has developed a new technology for the production of X-ray laser pulses.

    1
    Edgar Kaksis (left) and Paolo Carpeggiani

    The X-rays used to examine a broken leg in the hospital are easy to produce. In industry, however, X-rays of a completely different kind are also needed – namely the shortest, high-energy X-ray laser pulses possible. They are used, for example, in the production of nanostructures and electronic components, but also to monitor the course of chemical reactions in real time.

    Strong, extremely short-wave X-ray pulses in the wavelength range of nanometers are difficult to produce, but now a new, simpler method has been developed at TU Wien: The starting point is not a titanium-sapphire laser, as before, but an ytterbium laser. The decisive trick is that the light is then sent through a gas in order to change its properties in a targeted manner.

    With long wavelengths to short wavelengths

    The wavelength of a laser beam depends on the material in which it is generated: in the atoms or molecules involved, electrons change from a state to a state with lower energy. A photon is emitted – its wavelength (and thus its color) depends on how much energy the electron has lost during its change of state. This allows you to create different laser colors – from red to violet.

    However, if you want to produce laser beams with a much smaller wavelength, then you have to use special tricks: You first generate laser beams with a large wavelength and shoot them at atoms. An electron is snatched from the atoms, it is accelerated in the electric field of the laser, then reverses and collides again with the atom from which it came – and short-wave X-rays can then be produced. This technique is called “High Harmonic Generation”.

    “At first glance, the situation seems somewhat counter-intuititive,” says Paolo Carpeggiani from the Institute of Photonics at TU Wien. “It turns out that the longer the wavelength of the original laser beam, the smaller wavelengths can be achieved in the end.” However, the efficiency of X-ray radiation production also decreases: If you want to generate very short-wave radiation, then its intensity becomes very low.

    Ytterbium instead of titanium sapphire, gas instead of crystal

    Until now, this technology has almost always used titanium-sapphire lasers and then increased the wavelength of its radiation with special crystals in order to generate X-rays that are as short-wave as possible by high-harmonic generation. However, the team at TU Wien has now developed a simpler and at the same time more powerful method: an ytterbium laser was used. Such a laser is simpler, cheaper and more powerful than a titanium-sapphire laser, but so far it has not come close to the results of titanium-sapphire lasers in the production of X-ray pulses.

    At TU Wien, the wavelength of the laser radiation was first increased by sending this radiation not through a crystal as usual, but through a molecular gas. “This increases efficiency dramatically,” says Paolo Carpeggiani. “Instead of the usual 20%, we come to around 80%.”

    The resulting laser light can then be used as before for high-harmonic generation to generate X-ray laser pulses. “We were able to show that the new technique of ytterbium lasers, combined with gas-based wavelength conversion, is not only able to generate X-ray laser pulses, but also achieves this with significantly higher efficiency than before.” This makes it easier and more cost-effective to use X-ray lasers for industrial applications or scientific investigations.

    ACS Photonics
    See the science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here.

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Vienna University of Technology [Technische Universität Wien](AT) is one of the major universities in Vienna, Austria. The university finds high international and domestic recognition in teaching as well as in research, and it is a highly esteemed partner of innovation-oriented enterprises. It currently has about 28,100 students (29% women), eight faculties and about 5,000 staff members (3,800 academics).

    The university’s teaching and research is focused on engineering, computer science, and natural sciences.

    The Vienna University of Technology [Technische Universität Wien](AT), has been conducting research, teaching and learning under the motto “Technology for people” for over 200 years. “TU Wien” has evolved into an open academic institution where discussions can happen, opinions can be voiced and arguments will be heard. Although everyone may have different individual philosophies and approaches to life, the staff, management personnel and students at TU Wien all promote open-mindedness and tolerance.

    The institution was founded in 1815 by Emperor Francis I of Austria as the k.k. Polytechnische Institut (Imperial-Royal Polytechnic Institute). The first rector was Johann Joseph von Prechtl. It was renamed the Technische Hochschule (College of Technology) in 1872. When it began granting doctoral and higher degrees in 1975, it was renamed the Technische Universität Wien (Vienna University of Technology).

    As a university of technology, TU Wien covers a wide spectrum of scientific concepts from abstract pure research and the fundamental principles of science to applied technological research and partnership with industry.

    TU Wien is ranked #192 by the QS World University Ranking, #406 by the Center of World University Rankings, and it is positioned among the best 401-500 higher education institutions globally by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. The computer science department has been consistently ranked among the top 100 in the world by the QS World University Ranking and The Times Higher Education World University Rankings respectively.

    TU Wien has eight faculties led by deans: Architecture and Planning, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Computer Sciences, Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, Mathematics and Geoinformation, Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, and Physics.

    The University is led by the Rector and four Vice Rectors (responsible for Research, Academic Affairs, Finance as well as Human Resources and Gender). The Senate has 26 members. The University Council, consisting of seven members, acts as a supervisory board.

    Development work in almost all areas of technology is encouraged by the interaction between basic research and the different fields of engineering sciences at TU Wien. Also, the framework of cooperative projects with other universities, research institutes and business sector partners is established by the research section of TU Wien. TU Wien has sharpened its research profile by defining competence fields and setting up interdisciplinary collaboration centres, and clearer outlines will be developed.

    Research focus points of TU Wien are introduced as computational science and engineering, quantum physics and quantum technologies, materials and matter, information and communication technology and energy and environment.

    The EU Research Support (EURS) provides services at TU Wien and informs both researchers and administrative staff in preparing and carrying out EU research projects.

     
  • richardmitnick 1:54 pm on January 14, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "AI Discovers New Nanostructures", , Blending self-assembling materials together has enabled CFN scientists to uncover unique structures., BNL scientists collaborate with the Center for Advanced Mathematics for Energy Research Applications (CAMERA) at The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory for gpCAM., Finding the right combination of parameters to create new and useful structures is a battle against time. CFN scientists leveraged a new AI capability: autonomous experimentation., gpCAM is a flexible algorithm and software for autonomous experimentation., Nanotechnology, Scientists aim to build a library of self-assembled nanopattern types to broaden their applications., Scientists at Brookhaven National Laboratory have successfully demonstrated that autonomous methods can discover new materials., Scientists at Brookhaven’s Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN) are experts at directing the self-assembly process., ,   

    From The DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory: “AI Discovers New Nanostructures” 

    From The DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory

    1.13.23
    Stephanie Kossman
    skossman@bnl.gov
    (631) 344-8671

    Peter Genzer
    genzer@bnl.gov
    (631) 344-3174

    Researchers at the Center for Functional Nanomaterials [below] used artificial intelligence to rapidly discover new self-assembled nanostructures.

    1
    Scanning-electron microscopy images depict novel nanostructures discovered by artificial intelligence. Researchers describe the patterns as skew (left), alternating lines (center), and ladder (right). Scale bars are 200 nanometers. Credit: BNL.

    Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory have successfully demonstrated that autonomous methods can discover new materials. The artificial intelligence (AI)-driven technique led to the discovery of three new nanostructures, including a first-of-its-kind nanoscale “ladder.” The research was published today in Science Advances [below].

    The newly discovered structures were formed by a process called self-assembly, in which a material’s molecules organize themselves into unique patterns. Scientists at Brookhaven’s Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN) are experts at directing the self-assembly process, creating templates for materials to form desirable arrangements for applications in microelectronics, catalysis, and more. Their discovery of the nanoscale ladder and other new structures further widens the scope of self-assembly’s applications.

    “Self-assembly can be used as a technique for nanopatterning, which is a driver for advances in microelectronics and computer hardware,” said CFN scientist and co-author Gregory Doerk. “These technologies are always pushing for higher resolution using smaller nanopatterns. You can get really small and tightly controlled features from self-assembling materials, but they do not necessarily obey the kind of rules that we lay out for circuits, for example. By directing self-assembly using a template, we can form patterns that are more useful.”

    Staff scientists at CFN, which is a DOE Office of Science User Facility, aim to build a library of self-assembled nanopattern types to broaden their applications. In previous studies, they demonstrated that new types of patterns are made possible by blending two self-assembling materials together.

    2
    Kevin Yager (left) and Gregory Doerk. Credit: BNL.

    The fact that we can now create a ladder structure, which no one has ever dreamed of before, is amazing,” said CFN group leader and co-author Kevin Yager. “Traditional self-assembly can only form relatively simple structures like cylinders, sheets, and spheres. But by blending two materials together and using just the right chemical grating, we’ve found that entirely new structures are possible.”

    Blending self-assembling materials together has enabled CFN scientists to uncover unique structures, but it has also created new challenges. With many more parameters to control in the self-assembly process, finding the right combination of parameters to create new and useful structures is a battle against time. To accelerate their research, CFN scientists leveraged a new AI capability: autonomous experimentation.

    In collaboration with the Center for Advanced Mathematics for Energy Research Applications (CAMERA) at The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Brookhaven scientists at CFN and the National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II) [below], another DOE Office of Science User Facility at Brookhaven Lab, have been developing an AI framework that can autonomously define and perform all the steps of an experiment. CAMERA’s gpCAM algorithm drives the framework’s autonomous decision-making. The latest research is the team’s first successful demonstration of the algorithm’s ability to discover new materials.

    3
    The Soft Matter Interfaces (SMI) beamline at the National Synchrotron Light Source II. Credit: BNL.

    “gpCAM is a flexible algorithm and software for autonomous experimentation,” said Berkeley Lab scientist and co-author Marcus Noack. “It was used particularly ingeniously in this study to autonomously explore different features of the model.”

    “With help from our colleagues at Berkeley Lab, we had this software and methodology ready to go, and now we’ve successfully used it to discover new materials,” Yager said. “We’ve now learned enough about autonomous science that we can take a materials problem and convert it into an autonomous problem pretty easily.”

    To accelerate materials discovery using their new algorithm, the team first developed a complex sample with a spectrum of properties for analysis. Researchers fabricated the sample using the CFN nanofabrication facility and carried out the self-assembly in the CFN material synthesis facility.

    “An old school way of doing material science is to synthesize a sample, measure it, learn from it, and then go back and make a different sample and keep iterating that process,” Yager said. “Instead, we made a sample that has a gradient of every parameter we’re interested in. That single sample is thus a vast collection of many distinct material structures.”

    Then, the team brought the sample to NSLS-II, which generates ultrabright x-rays for studying the structure of materials. CFN operates three experimental stations in partnership with NSLS-II, one of which was used in this study, the Soft Matter Interfaces (SMI) beamline.

    “One of the SMI beamline’s strengths is its ability to focus the x-ray beam on the sample down to microns,” said NSLS-II scientist and co-author Masa Fukuto. “By analyzing how these microbeam x-rays get scattered by the material, we learn about the material’s local structure at the illuminated spot. Measurements at many different spots can then reveal how the local structure varies across the gradient sample. In this work, we let the AI algorithm pick, on the fly, which spot to measure next to maximize the value of each measurement.” 

    As the sample was measured at the SMI beamline, the algorithm, without human intervention, created of model of the material’s numerous and diverse set of structures. The model updated itself with each subsequent x-ray measurement, making every measurement more insightful and accurate.

    3
    X-ray scattering data (left) are shown alongside corresponding scanning-electron microscopy images (right) of key areas in the sample identified by the AI algorithm. The images revealed three novel nanopatterns: alternating lines (top), skew (center), and ladder (bottom). Scale bar is 500 nanometers. Credit: BNL.

    In a matter of hours, the algorithm had identified three key areas in the complex sample for the CFN researchers to study more closely. They used the CFN electron microscopy facility to image those key areas in exquisite detail, uncovering the rails and rungs of a nanoscale ladder, among other novel features.

    From start to finish, the experiment ran about six hours. The researchers estimate they would have needed about a month to make this discovery using traditional methods.

    “Autonomous methods can tremendously accelerate discovery,” Yager said. “It’s essentially ‘tightening’ the usual discovery loop of science, so that we cycle between hypotheses and measurements more quickly. Beyond just speed, however, autonomous methods increase the scope of what we can study, meaning we can tackle more challenging science problems.”

    “Moving forward, we want to investigate the complex interplay among multiple parameters. We conducted simulations using the CFN computer cluster that verified our experimental results, but they also suggested how other parameters, such as film thickness, can also play an important role,” Doerk said.

    The team is actively applying their autonomous research method to even more challenging material discovery problems in self-assembly, as well as other classes of materials. Autonomous discovery methods are adaptable and can be applied to nearly any research problem.

    “We are now deploying these methods to the broad community of users who come to CFN and NSLS-II to conduct experiments,” Yager said. “Anyone can work with us to accelerate the exploration of their materials research. We foresee this empowering a host of new discoveries in the coming years, including in national priority areas like clean energy and microelectronics.”

    This research was supported by the DOE Office of Science.

    Science papers:
    Science Advances
    See the above science paper for instructive material with images.
    Related:
    ACS Nano 2014
    Nature Communications 2016
    See the above science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    One of ten national laboratories overseen and primarily funded by the The DOE Office of Science, The DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory conducts research in the physical, biomedical, and environmental sciences, as well as in energy technologies and national security. Brookhaven Lab also builds and operates major scientific facilities available to university, industry and government researchers. The Laboratory’s almost 3,000 scientists, engineers, and support staff are joined each year by more than 5,000 visiting researchers from around the world. Brookhaven is operated and managed for DOE’s Office of Science by Brookhaven Science Associates, a limited-liability company founded by Stony Brook University the largest academic user of Laboratory facilities, and Battelle, a nonprofit, applied science and technology organization.

    Research at BNL specializes in nuclear and high energy physics, energy science and technology, environmental and bioscience, nanoscience and national security. The 5300 acre campus contains several large research facilities, including the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider [below] and National Synchrotron Light Source II [below]. Seven Nobel prizes have been awarded for work conducted at Brookhaven lab.

    BNL is staffed by approximately 2,750 scientists, engineers, technicians, and support personnel, and hosts 4,000 guest investigators every year. The laboratory has its own police station, fire department, and ZIP code (11973). In total, the lab spans a 5,265-acre (21 km^2) area that is mostly coterminous with the hamlet of Upton, New York. BNL is served by a rail spur operated as-needed by the New York and Atlantic Railway. Co-located with the laboratory is the Upton, New York, forecast office of the National Weather Service.

    Major programs

    Although originally conceived as a nuclear research facility, Brookhaven Lab’s mission has greatly expanded. Its foci are now:

    Nuclear and high-energy physics
    Physics and chemistry of materials
    Environmental and climate research
    Nanomaterials
    Energy research
    Nonproliferation
    Structural biology
    Accelerator physics

    Operation

    Brookhaven National Lab was originally owned by the Atomic Energy Commission and is now owned by that agency’s successor, the United States Department of Energy (DOE). DOE subcontracts the research and operation to universities and research organizations. It is currently operated by Brookhaven Science Associates LLC, which is an equal partnership of Stony Brook University and Battelle Memorial Institute. From 1947 to 1998, it was operated by Associated Universities, Inc. (AUI), but AUI lost its contract in the wake of two incidents: a 1994 fire at the facility’s high-beam flux reactor that exposed several workers to radiation and reports in 1997 of a tritium leak into the groundwater of the Long Island Central Pine Barrens on which the facility sits.

    Foundations

    Following World War II, the US Atomic Energy Commission was created to support government-sponsored peacetime research on atomic energy. The effort to build a nuclear reactor in the American northeast was fostered largely by physicists Isidor Isaac Rabi and Norman Foster Ramsey Jr., who during the war witnessed many of their colleagues at Columbia University leave for new remote research sites following the departure of the Manhattan Project from its campus. Their effort to house this reactor near New York City was rivalled by a similar effort at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to have a facility near Boston, Massachusetts. Involvement was quickly solicited from representatives of northeastern universities to the south and west of New York City such that this city would be at their geographic center. In March 1946 a nonprofit corporation was established that consisted of representatives from nine major research universities — Columbia University, Cornell University, Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Rochester, and Yale University.

    Out of 17 considered sites in the Boston-Washington corridor, Camp Upton on Long Island was eventually chosen as the most suitable in consideration of space, transportation, and availability. The camp had been a training center from the US Army during both World War I and World War II. After the latter war, Camp Upton was deemed no longer necessary and became available for reuse. A plan was conceived to convert the military camp into a research facility.

    On March 21, 1947, the Camp Upton site was officially transferred from the U.S. War Department to the new U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), predecessor to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

    Research and facilities

    Reactor history

    In 1947 construction began on the first nuclear reactor at Brookhaven, the Brookhaven Graphite Research Reactor. This reactor, which opened in 1950, was the first reactor to be constructed in the United States after World War II. The High Flux Beam Reactor operated from 1965 to 1999. In 1959 Brookhaven built the first US reactor specifically tailored to medical research, the Brookhaven Medical Research Reactor, which operated until 2000.

    Accelerator history

    In 1952 Brookhaven began using its first particle accelerator, the Cosmotron. At the time the Cosmotron was the world’s highest energy accelerator, being the first to impart more than 1 GeV of energy to a particle.

    BNL Cosmotron 1952-1966.

    The Cosmotron was retired in 1966, after it was superseded in 1960 by the new Alternating Gradient Synchrotron (AGS).

    BNL Alternating Gradient Synchrotron (AGS).

    The AGS was used in research that resulted in 3 Nobel prizes, including the discovery of the muon neutrino, the charm quark, and CP violation.

    In 1970 in BNL started the ISABELLE project to develop and build two proton intersecting storage rings.

    The groundbreaking for the project was in October 1978. In 1981, with the tunnel for the accelerator already excavated, problems with the superconducting magnets needed for the ISABELLE accelerator brought the project to a halt, and the project was eventually cancelled in 1983.

    The National Synchrotron Light Source operated from 1982 to 2014 and was involved with two Nobel Prize-winning discoveries. It has since been replaced by the National Synchrotron Light Source II. [below].

    BNL National Synchrotron Light Source.

    After ISABELLE’S cancellation, physicist at BNL proposed that the excavated tunnel and parts of the magnet assembly be used in another accelerator. In 1984 the first proposal for the accelerator now known as the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC)[below] was put forward. The construction got funded in 1991 and RHIC has been operational since 2000. One of the world’s only two operating heavy-ion colliders, RHIC is as of 2010 the second-highest-energy collider after the Large Hadron Collider (CH). RHIC is housed in a tunnel 2.4 miles (3.9 km) long and is visible from space.

    On January 9, 2020, it was announced by Paul Dabbar, undersecretary of the US Department of Energy Office of Science, that the BNL eRHIC design has been selected over the conceptual design put forward by DOE’s Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility [Jlab] as the future Electron–ion collider (EIC) in the United States.

    In addition to the site selection, it was announced that the BNL EIC had acquired CD-0 from the Department of Energy. BNL’s eRHIC design proposes upgrading the existing Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider, which collides beams light to heavy ions including polarized protons, with a polarized electron facility, to be housed in the same tunnel.

    Other discoveries

    In 1958, Brookhaven scientists created one of the world’s first video games, Tennis for Two. In 1968 Brookhaven scientists patented Maglev, a transportation technology that utilizes magnetic levitation.

    Major facilities

    Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), which was designed to research quark–gluon plasma and the sources of proton spin. Until 2009 it was the world’s most powerful heavy ion collider. It is the only collider of spin-polarized protons.

    Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN), used for the study of nanoscale materials.

    BNL National Synchrotron Light Source II, Brookhaven’s newest user facility, opened in 2015 to replace the National Synchrotron Light Source (NSLS), which had operated for 30 years. NSLS was involved in the work that won the 2003 and 2009 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

    Alternating Gradient Synchrotron, a particle accelerator that was used in three of the lab’s Nobel prizes.
    Accelerator Test Facility, generates, accelerates and monitors particle beams.
    Tandem Van de Graaff, once the world’s largest electrostatic accelerator.

    Computational Science resources, including access to a massively parallel Blue Gene series supercomputer that is among the fastest in the world for scientific research, run jointly by Brookhaven National Laboratory and Stony Brook University-SUNY.

    Interdisciplinary Science Building, with unique laboratories for studying high-temperature superconductors and other materials important for addressing energy challenges.
    NASA Space Radiation Laboratory, where scientists use beams of ions to simulate cosmic rays and assess the risks of space radiation to human space travelers and equipment.

    Off-site contributions

    It is a contributing partner to the ATLAS experiment, one of the four detectors located at the The European Organization for Nuclear Research [La Organización Europea para la Investigación Nuclear][Organization européenne pour la recherche nucléaire] [Europäische Organization für Kernforschung](CH)[CERN] Large Hadron Collider(LHC). Credit: CERN.

    The European Organization for Nuclear Research [La Organización Europea para la Investigación Nuclear][Organization européenne pour la recherche nucléaire] [Europäische Organization für Kernforschung](CH)[CERN] map. Credit: CERN.

    It is currently operating at The European Organization for Nuclear Research [La Organización Europea para la Investigación Nuclear][Organization européenne pour la recherche nucléaire] [Europäische Organization für Kernforschung](CH) [CERN] near Geneva, Switzerland.

    Brookhaven was also responsible for the design of the Spallation Neutron Source at DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee.

    DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory Spallation Neutron Source annotated.

    Brookhaven plays a role in a range of neutrino research projects around the world, including the Daya Bay Neutrino Experiment (CN) nuclear power plant, approximately 52 kilometers northeast of Hong Kong and 45 kilometers east of Shenzhen, China.

    Daya Bay Neutrino Experiment (CN) nuclear power plant, approximately 52 kilometers northeast of Hong Kong and 45 kilometers east of Shenzhen, China .

     
  • richardmitnick 12:55 pm on January 14, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "The University of Oregon chemists cook up a brand-new kind of nanomaterial", , Carbon nanomaterials, , Nanotechnology, , Scientists could make things that just don't exist in nature., Scientists find new properties that they have not been able to see before., That metal kickstarts the chemical reaction to make the second ring and forcing it to happen inside the first ring and so forth to newly interlocked rings., The new method allows carbon nanotube-like structures to be linked together., The solution hinges on adding a strategically placed metal atom to one ring.,   

    From The University of Oregon : “The University of Oregon chemists cook up a brand-new kind of nanomaterial” 

    From The University of Oregon

    1.13.23
    Laurel Hamers

    1
    Credit: The University of Oregon.

    There’s a new nanomaterial on the block. University of Oregon chemists have found a way to make carbon-based molecules with a unique structural feature: interlocking rings.

    1
    Credit: University of Oregon.

    Like other nanomaterials, these linked-together molecules have interesting properties that can be “tuned” by changing their size and chemical makeup. That makes them potentially useful for an array of applications, such as specialized sensors and new kinds of electronics.

    “It’s a new topology for carbon nanomaterials, and we’re finding new properties that we haven’t been able to see before,” said James May, a graduate student in chemistry professor Ramesh Jasti’s lab and the first author on the paper. May and his colleagues report their findings in a paper published Jan. 12 in Nature Chemistry [below].

    Though other labs have also synthesized various types of interlocking molecules, the Jasti lab’s method allows carbon nanotube-like structures to be linked together. It will allow chemists to make many different variations on the structure and more fully explore the properties of the new materials.

    “You can create structures you can’t with other methods,” Jasti said.

    For example, his team used the approach to make three interlocked rings, as well as a rod-like structure with multiple rings that can slide up and down. The advance grew out of Jasti’s work on nanohoops, rings of carbon atoms that are a pared-back variation of long, skinny carbon nanotubes.

    “Because we’re able to make these circular structures at will, I started thinking, could you make things that just don’t exist in nature?” Jasti said. “That’s where this idea of interlocking rings came in.”

    Finding a series of chemical reactions that could generate the complicated ring structures took a creative approach. Their solution hinges on adding a strategically placed metal atom to one ring. That metal kickstarts the chemical reaction to make the second ring and forcing it to happen inside the first ring. Once that reaction happens, the second ring is trapped, locked together with the first ring.

    “We’re able to get chemistry to happen inside of a space where it might never occur,” May said.

    The interlocked molecules behave differently if their size changes or if the rings are arranged differently or if different chemical elements are thrown into the mix. By making nanoscale adjustments, scientists could enhance the material to do exactly what they want it to do. Because the class of materials is so new, scientists are still figuring out all of the possibilities.

    But Jasti’s team is particularly interested in their potential as sensors, where a change in the position of the rings in response to a particular chemical could lead to a fluorescent glow.

    They also could be used to create flexible electronics or dynamic biomedical materials.

    “Typical carbon nanomaterials like carbon nanotubes, graphene or even diamond are static materials,” he said. “Here, we have created new types of carbon nanomaterials that maintain their fascinating electrical and optical properties but now have capability to do things like rotate, compress, or stretch.”

    Science paper:
    Nature Chemistry

    See the full article here .

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The University of Oregon is a public flagship research university in Eugene, Oregon. Founded in 1876, the institution’s 295-acre campus is along the Willamette River. Since July 2014, UO has been governed by the Board of Trustees of the University of Oregon. The university has a Carnegie Classification of “highest research activity” and has 19 research centers and institutes. UO was admitted to The Association of American Universitiesin 1969.

    The University of Oregon is organized into five colleges (Arts and Sciences, Business, Design, Education, and Honors) and seven professional schools (Accounting, Architecture and Environment, Art and Design, Journalism and Communication, Law, Music and Dance, and Planning, Public Policy and Management) and a graduate school. Furthermore, UO offers 316 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Most academic programs follow the 10 week Quarter System.

    UO student-athletes compete as the Ducks and are part of the Pac-12 Conference in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). With eighteen varsity teams, the Oregon Ducks are best known for their football team and track and field program.

     
  • richardmitnick 12:07 pm on January 14, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Nanotechnology, , , , , "The world in grains of interstellar dust", Hokkaido Imperial University [北海道帝國大學](JP), Understanding how dust grains form in interstellar gas could offer significant insights to astronomers and help materials scientists develop useful nanoparticles.   

    From Hokkaido Imperial University [北海道帝國大學](JP): “The world in grains of interstellar dust” 

    From Hokkaido Imperial University [北海道帝國大學](JP)

    1.14.23
    Associate Professor Yuki Kimura
    Institute of Low Temperature Science
    Hokkaido University
    +81-11-706-7666
    ykimura@lowtem.hokudai.ac.jp

    Understanding how dust grains form in interstellar gas could offer significant insights to astronomers and help materials scientists develop useful nanoparticles.

    Laboratory and rocket-borne studies have revealed new insights into how interstellar dust grains came into being before our solar system formed. The results, published by Hokkaido University researchers and colleagues in Japan and Germany in the journal Science Advances [below], might also help scientists make nanoparticles with useful applications in more efficient and eco-friendly ways.

    These ‘presolar’ grains can be found in meteorites that fall to Earth, allowing laboratory studies that reveal possible routes for their formation.

    “Just as the shapes of snowflakes provide information on the temperature and humidity of the upper atmosphere, the characteristics of presolar grains in meteorites limits the environments in the outflow of gas from stars in which they could have formed,” explains Yuki Kimura of the Hokkaido team. Unfortunately, however, it has proved difficult to pin down the possible environments for the formation of grains consisting of a titanium carbide core and a surrounding graphitic carbon mantle.

    2
    Transmission electron micrograph of the grains developed in the study (Photos: Yuki Kimura).

    Better understanding of the environment around stars in which the grains could have formed is crucial to learning more about the interstellar environment in general. That could, in turn, help clarify how stars evolve and how the materials around them become the building blocks for planets.

    The structure of the grains appears to suggest that their titanium carbide core first formed and was then subsequently coated in a thick layer of carbon in more distant regions of gas outflow from stars that formed before the Sun.

    The team explored the conditions that might recreate the grain formation in laboratory modelling studies guided by theoretical work on grain nucleation – the formation of grains from tiny original specks. This work was augmented by experiments performed in the periods of microgravity experienced aboard sub-orbital rocket flights.

    The results offered some surprises. They suggest the grains most likely formed in what the researchers call a non-classical nucleation pathway: a series of three distinct steps not predicted by conventional theories. First, carbon forms tiny, homogenous nuclei; titanium then deposits on these carbon nuclei to form carbon particles containing titanium carbide; finally, thousands of these fine particles fuse to form the grain. 

    3
    Fig. 1. Interferometer and nucleation chamber for the microgravity experiment in the sounding rocket.
    (A) Optics and laser path of the double-wavelength Mach-Zehnder–type laser interferometer and the nucleation chamber (n), which are same equipment with that in (23). The red and green lines show the optical paths of the red and green lasers (rl and gl), respectively. The interference fringes and real images were recorded by charge-coupled device cameras (cam1 and cam2, respectively) and recorders. The evaporation source and the sample collector are shown as black solid (es) and dotted (sc) lines, respectively. The other labels are as follows: b, beam splitter; c, collimator; d, dichroic mirror; e, electrode; l, lens; m, mirror; o, optical fiber; p, polarizer; ph, pyrometer head; s, short-pass filter; sc, sample collector; v, vacuum gauge; va, valve with a gas line; vp, viewport. (B) Photograph of the experimental system. All optics and the chamber were located on a 405-mm-diameter base plate. “Cut off” is a duct for cable connections between the payload and the rocket. The labels are as follows: con, controller for the sample collector; ds, D-sub connectors; pb, pyrometer body; rec, image recorder.

    “We also suggest that the characteristics of other types of presolar and solar grains that formed at later stages in the development of the solar system might be accurately explained by considering non-classical nucleation pathways, such as those suggested by our work,” Kimura concludes.

    The research could aid understanding of distant astronomical events, including giant stars, newly forming planetary systems, and the atmospheres of planets in alien solar systems around other stars. But it might also help scientists here on Earth to gain better control over the nanoparticles they are exploring for use in many fields, including solar energy, chemical catalysis, sensors and nanomedicine. The potential implications of studying the tiny grains in meteorites therefore range from the future industries of Earth to as far away as we can imagine.

    Science paper:
    Science Advances
    See the science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    Hokkaido Imperial University [北海道帝國大學](JP) is a Japanese national university in Sapporo, Hokkaido (JP). It was the fifth Imperial University in Japan, which were established to be the nation’s finest institutes of higher education or research, and was selected as a Top Type university of the Top Global University Project by the Japanese government. The main campus is located in downtown Sapporo, just north of Sapporo Station, and stretches approximately 2.4 kilometers northward. It is considered one of the top universities in Japan.

    The history of the university dates to the formal incorporation of Yezo as Hokkaido into the Japanese realm. Director of the Hokkaidō Development Commission Kuroda Kiyotaka, having traveled to America in 1870, looked to the American model of settling the new lands. Upon return he brought General Horace Capron, a commissioner of agriculture who pushed for the adoption of new agricultural practices and crops in Hokkaido’s colder clime. To achieve this an agriculture college was proposed, leading to the founding of Sapporo Agricultural College [札幌農學校](JP) in 1876 by William S. Clark with the help of five faculty members and a first class size of 24 students. In September 1907, Tohoku Imperial University [東北帝國大學] set up the faculty of Agriculture in Sapporo. Tohoku Imperial University ceded the Faculty of Agriculture to Hokkaido Imperial University [北海道帝國大學] on April 1, 1918. It was one of nine Imperial Universities. The School of Medicine was established in 1919, at which time the Agricultural College became the Faculty of Agriculture. This was followed by the Faculty of Engineering, the Faculty of Science, and finally in 1947, the Faculty of Law and Literature. The current name of Hokkaido University also came into use in 1947. In 1953, the Graduate School was established.

    Since 2004 the university has been incorporated as a National University Corporation under a new law which applies to all national universities. Although the incorporation has led to increased financial independence and autonomy, Hokkaido University is still partially controlled by the Japanese Ministry of Education.

    In 2014 the university was selected under the Super Global Universities program that began as an initiative of Prime Minister Shinzō Abe who stated its aim was to help more of Japan’s universities rank in the top 100 worldwide. Under the program, it is listed in the top university category or Type A—(Top Type) The Top Type is for world-class universities that have the potential to be ranked in the top 100 in world university rankings. Each Type A university will receive ¥420 million ($US 4.2 million) annually until 2023.

    In June 2020, Hokkaido University president Toyoharu Nawa was dismissed by Japanese education minister Koichi Hagiuda for abuse of power at the workplace, becoming the first national university president to be dismissed since national universities became independent in 2004. He was succeeded by former neurosurgeon and director of Hokkaido University Hospital Kiyoharu Houkin.

     
  • richardmitnick 9:25 pm on January 12, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Now on the molecular scale - electric motors", , , , , , , , Nanotechnology, , , , Tiny motor one day could drive innovations in materials science and medicine.   

    From The Judd A. and Marjorie Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences At Northwestern University: “Now on the molecular scale – electric motors” 

    From The Judd A. and Marjorie Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences

    At

    Northwestern U bloc

    Northwestern University

    1.11.23
    Megan Fellman
    Phone: (847) 491-3115
    fellman@northwestern.edu

    Tiny motor one day could drive innovations in materials science and medicine.

    1
    Only 2 nanometers wide, the molecular motor is the first to be produced en masse in abundance. The motor is easy to make, operates quickly and does not produce any waste products. Credit: Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.

    Electric vehicles, powered by macroscopic electric motors, are increasingly prevalent on our streets and highways. These quiet and eco-friendly machines got their start nearly 200 years ago when physicists took the first tiny steps to bring electric motors into the world.

    Now a multidisciplinary team led by Northwestern University has made an electric motor you can’t see with the naked eye: an electric motor on the molecular scale.

    This early work — a motor that can convert electrical energy into unidirectional motion at the molecular level — has implications for materials science and particularly medicine, where the electric molecular motor could team up with biomolecular motors in the human body. 

    “We have taken molecular nanotechnology to another level,” said Northwestern’s Sir Fraser Stoddart, who received the 2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work in the design and synthesis of molecular machines. “This elegant chemistry uses electrons to effectively drive a molecular motor, much like a macroscopic motor. While this area of chemistry is in its infancy, I predict one day these tiny motors will make a huge difference in medicine.”

    Stoddart, Board of Trustees Professor of Chemistry at the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, is a co-corresponding author of the study. The research was done in close collaboration with Dean Astumian, a molecular machine theorist and professor at the University of Maine, and William Goddard, a computational chemist and professor at the California Institute of Technology. Long Zhang, a postdoctoral fellow in Stoddart’s lab, is the paper’s first author and a co-corresponding author.

    Only 2 nanometers wide, the molecular motor is the first to be produced en masse in abundance. The motor is easy to make, operates quickly and does not produce any waste products. 

    The study was published January 11, 2022 by the journal Nature [below].

    The research team focused on a certain type of molecule with interlocking rings known as catenanes held together by powerful mechanical bonds, so the components could move freely relative to each other without falling apart. Stoddart decades ago played a key role in the creation of the mechanical bond, a new type of chemical bond that has led to the development of molecular machines.

    The electric molecular motor specifically is based on a catenane whose components ― a loop interlocked with two identical rings ― are redox active, i.e. they undergo unidirectional motion in response to changes in voltage potential. The researchers discovered that two rings are needed to achieve this unidirectional motion. Experiments showed that a catenane, which has one loop interlocked with one ring, does not run as a motor. 

    The synthesis and operation of molecules that perform the function of a motor ― converting external energy into directional motion ― has challenged scientists in the fields of chemistry, physics and molecular nanotechnology for some time.

    To achieve their breakthrough, Stoddart, Zhang and their Northwestern team spent more than four years on the design and synthesis of their electric molecular motor. This included a year working with UMaine’s Astumian and Caltech’s Goddard to complete the quantum mechanical calculations to explain the working mechanism behind the motor.

    “Controlling the relative movement of components on a molecular scale is a formidable challenge, so collaboration was crucial,” Zhang said. “Working with experts in synthesis, measurements, computational chemistry and theory enabled us to develop an electric molecular motor that works in solution.”

    A few examples of single-molecule electric motors have been reported, but they require harsh operating conditions, such as the use of an ultrahigh vacuum, and also produce waste. 

    The next steps for their electric molecular motor, the researchers said, is to attach many of the motors to an electrode surface to influence the surface and ultimately do some useful work. 

    “The achievement we report today is a testament to the creativity and productivity of our young scientists as well as their willingness to take risks,” Stoddart said. “This work gives me and the team enormous satisfaction.” 

    Stoddart is a member of the International Institute for Nanotechnology and the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University.

    Science paper:
    Nature
    See the science paper for instructive material with images.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Judd A. and Marjorie Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences is the largest of the twelve schools comprising Northwestern University, located in Evanston, Illinois and downtown Chicago, Illinois.

    It was established in 1851 and today comprises 25 departments and many specialty programs. Weinberg also has special agreements with Chicago’s major cultural institutions, including the Field Museum, Art Institute of Chicago, Adler Planetarium, Chicago Botanic Garden, and American Bar Foundation, to offer courses taught by Chicago-area experts.

    Northwestern South Campus
    South Campus

    Northwestern University is a private research university in Evanston, Illinois. Founded in 1851 to serve the former Northwest Territory, the university is a founding member of the Big Ten Conference.

    On May 31, 1850, nine men gathered to begin planning a university that would serve the Northwest Territory.

    Given that they had little money, no land and limited higher education experience, their vision was ambitious. But through a combination of creative financing, shrewd politicking, religious inspiration and an abundance of hard work, the founders of Northwestern University were able to make that dream a reality.

    In 1853, the founders purchased a 379-acre tract of land on the shore of Lake Michigan 12 miles north of Chicago. They established a campus and developed the land near it, naming the surrounding town Evanston in honor of one of the University’s founders, John Evans. After completing its first building in 1855, Northwestern began classes that fall with two faculty members and 10 students.
    Twenty-one presidents have presided over Northwestern in the years since. The University has grown to include 12 schools and colleges, with additional campuses in Chicago and Doha, Qatar.

    Northwestern is known for its focus on interdisciplinary education, extensive research output, and student traditions. The university provides instruction in over 200 formal academic concentrations, including various dual degree programs. The university is composed of eleven undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools, which include the Kellogg School of Management, the Pritzker School of Law, the Feinberg School of Medicine, the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, the Bienen School of Music, the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Medill School of Journalism, the School of Communication, the School of Professional Studies, the School of Education and Social Policy, and The Graduate School. As of fall 2019, the university had 21,946 enrolled students, including 8,327 undergraduates and 13,619 graduate students.

    Valued at $12.2 billion, Northwestern’s endowment is among the largest university endowments in the United States. Its numerous research programs bring in nearly $900 million in sponsored research each year.

    Northwestern’s main 240-acre (97 ha) campus lies along the shores of Lake Michigan in Evanston, 12 miles north of Downtown Chicago. The university’s law, medical, and professional schools, along with its nationally ranked Northwestern Memorial Hospital, are located on a 25-acre (10 ha) campus in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood. The university also maintains a campus in Doha, Qatar and locations in San Francisco, California, Washington, D.C. and Miami, Florida.

    As of October 2020, Northwestern’s faculty and alumni have included 1 Fields Medalist, 22 Nobel Prize laureates, 40 Pulitzer Prize winners, 6 MacArthur Fellows, 17 Rhodes Scholars, 27 Marshall Scholars, 23 National Medal of Science winners, 11 National Humanities Medal recipients, 84 members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 10 living billionaires, 16 Olympic medalists, and 2 U.S. Supreme Court Justices. Northwestern alumni have founded notable companies and organizations such as the Mayo Clinic, The Blackstone Group, Kirkland & Ellis, U.S. Steel, Guggenheim Partners, Accenture, Aon Corporation, AQR Capital, Booz Allen Hamilton, and Melvin Capital.

    The foundation of Northwestern University can be traced to a meeting on May 31, 1850, of nine prominent Chicago businessmen, Methodist leaders, and attorneys who had formed the idea of establishing a university to serve what had been known from 1787 to 1803 as the Northwest Territory. On January 28, 1851, the Illinois General Assembly granted a charter to the Trustees of the North-Western University, making it the first chartered university in Illinois. The school’s nine founders, all of whom were Methodists (three of them ministers), knelt in prayer and worship before launching their first organizational meeting. Although they affiliated the university with the Methodist Episcopal Church, they favored a non-sectarian admissions policy, believing that Northwestern should serve all people in the newly developing territory by bettering the economy in Evanston.

    John Evans, for whom Evanston is named, bought 379 acres (153 ha) of land along Lake Michigan in 1853, and Philo Judson developed plans for what would become the city of Evanston, Illinois. The first building, Old College, opened on November 5, 1855. To raise funds for its construction, Northwestern sold $100 “perpetual scholarships” entitling the purchaser and his heirs to free tuition. Another building, University Hall, was built in 1869 of the same Joliet limestone as the Chicago Water Tower, also built in 1869, one of the few buildings in the heart of Chicago to survive the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. In 1873 the Evanston College for Ladies merged with Northwestern, and Frances Willard, who later gained fame as a suffragette and as one of the founders of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU), became the school’s first dean of women (Willard Residential College, built in 1938, honors her name). Northwestern admitted its first female students in 1869, and the first woman was graduated in 1874.

    Northwestern fielded its first intercollegiate football team in 1882, later becoming a founding member of the Big Ten Conference. In the 1870s and 1880s, Northwestern affiliated itself with already existing schools of law, medicine, and dentistry in Chicago. Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law is the oldest law school in Chicago. As the university’s enrollments grew, these professional schools were integrated with the undergraduate college in Evanston; the result was a modern research university combining professional, graduate, and undergraduate programs, which gave equal weight to teaching and research. By the turn of the century, Northwestern had grown in stature to become the third largest university in the United States after Harvard University and the University of Michigan.

    Under Walter Dill Scott’s presidency from 1920 to 1939, Northwestern began construction of an integrated campus in Chicago designed by James Gamble Rogers, noted for his design of the Yale University campus, to house the professional schools. The university also established the Kellogg School of Management and built several prominent buildings on the Evanston campus, including Dyche Stadium, now named Ryan Field, and Deering Library among others. In the 1920s, Northwestern became one of the first six universities in the United States to establish a Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC). In 1939, Northwestern hosted the first-ever NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championship game in the original Patten Gymnasium, which was later demolished and relocated farther north, along with the Dearborn Observatory, to make room for the Technological Institute.

    After the golden years of the 1920s, the Great Depression in the United States (1929–1941) had a severe impact on the university’s finances. Its annual income dropped 25 percent from $4.8 million in 1930-31 to $3.6 million in 1933-34. Investment income shrank, fewer people could pay full tuition, and annual giving from alumni and philanthropists fell from $870,000 in 1932 to a low of $331,000 in 1935. The university responded with two salary cuts of 10 percent each for all employees. It imposed hiring and building freezes and slashed appropriations for maintenance, books, and research. Having had a balanced budget in 1930-31, the university now faced deficits of roughly $100,000 for the next four years. Enrollments fell in most schools, with law and music suffering the biggest declines. However, the movement toward state certification of school teachers prompted Northwestern to start a new graduate program in education, thereby bringing in new students and much needed income. In June 1933, Robert Maynard Hutchins, president of the University of Chicago, proposed a merger of the two universities, estimating annual savings of $1.7 million. The two presidents were enthusiastic, and the faculty liked the idea; many Northwestern alumni, however, opposed it, fearing the loss of their Alma Mater and its many traditions that distinguished Northwestern from Chicago. The medical school, for example, was oriented toward training practitioners, and alumni feared it would lose its mission if it were merged into the more research-oriented University of Chicago Medical School. The merger plan was ultimately dropped. In 1935, the Deering family rescued the university budget with an unrestricted gift of $6 million, bringing the budget up to $5.4 million in 1938-39. This allowed many of the previous spending cuts to be restored, including half of the salary reductions.

    Like other American research universities, Northwestern was transformed by World War II (1939–1945). Regular enrollment fell dramatically, but the school opened high-intensity, short-term programs that trained over 50,000 military personnel, including future president John F. Kennedy. Northwestern’s existing NROTC program proved to be a boon to the university as it trained over 36,000 sailors over the course of the war, leading Northwestern to be called the “Annapolis of the Midwest.” Franklyn B. Snyder led the university from 1939 to 1949, and after the war, surging enrollments under the G.I. Bill drove dramatic expansion of both campuses. In 1948, prominent anthropologist Melville J. Herskovits founded the Program of African Studies at Northwestern, the first center of its kind at an American academic institution. J. Roscoe Miller’s tenure as president from 1949 to 1970 saw an expansion of the Evanston campus, with the construction of the Lakefill on Lake Michigan, growth of the faculty and new academic programs, and polarizing Vietnam-era student protests. In 1978, the first and second Unabomber attacks occurred at Northwestern University. Relations between Evanston and Northwestern became strained throughout much of the post-war era because of episodes of disruptive student activism, disputes over municipal zoning, building codes, and law enforcement, as well as restrictions on the sale of alcohol near campus until 1972. Northwestern’s exemption from state and municipal property-tax obligations under its original charter has historically been a source of town-and-gown tension.

    Although government support for universities declined in the 1970s and 1980s, President Arnold R. Weber was able to stabilize university finances, leading to a revitalization of its campuses. As admissions to colleges and universities grew increasingly competitive in the 1990s and 2000s, President Henry S. Bienen’s tenure saw a notable increase in the number and quality of undergraduate applicants, continued expansion of the facilities and faculty, and renewed athletic competitiveness. In 1999, Northwestern student journalists uncovered information exonerating Illinois death-row inmate Anthony Porter two days before his scheduled execution. The Innocence Project has since exonerated 10 more men. On January 11, 2003, in a speech at Northwestern School of Law’s Lincoln Hall, then Governor of Illinois George Ryan announced that he would commute the sentences of more than 150 death-row inmates.

    In the 2010s, a 5-year capital campaign resulted in a new music center, a replacement building for the business school, and a $270 million athletic complex. In 2014, President Barack Obama delivered a seminal economics speech at the Evanston campus.

    Organization and administration

    Governance

    Northwestern is privately owned and governed by an appointed Board of Trustees, which is composed of 70 members and, as of 2011, has been chaired by William A. Osborn ’69. The board delegates its power to an elected president who serves as the chief executive officer of the university. Northwestern has had sixteen presidents in its history (excluding interim presidents). The current president, economist Morton O. Schapiro, succeeded Henry Bienen whose 14-year tenure ended on August 31, 2009. The president maintains a staff of vice presidents, directors, and other assistants for administrative, financial, faculty, and student matters. Kathleen Haggerty assumed the role of interim provost for the university in April 2020.

    Students are formally involved in the university’s administration through the Associated Student Government, elected representatives of the undergraduate students, and the Graduate Student Association, which represents the university’s graduate students.

    The admission requirements, degree requirements, courses of study, and disciplinary and degree recommendations for each of Northwestern’s 12 schools are determined by the voting members of that school’s faculty (assistant professor and above).

    Undergraduate and graduate schools

    Evanston Campus:

    Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences (1851)
    School of Communication (1878)
    Bienen School of Music (1895)
    McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science (1909)
    Medill School of Journalism (1921)
    School of Education and Social Policy (1926)
    School of Professional Studies (1933)

    Graduate and professional

    Evanston Campus

    Kellogg School of Management (1908)
    The Graduate School

    Chicago Campus

    Feinberg School of Medicine (1859)
    Kellogg School of Management (1908)
    Pritzker School of Law (1859)
    School of Professional Studies (1933)

    Northwestern University had a dental school from 1891 to May 31, 2001, when it closed.

    Endowment

    In 1996, Princess Diana made a trip to Evanston to raise money for the university hospital’s Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center at the invitation of then President Bienen. Her visit raised a total of $1.5 million for cancer research.

    In 2003, Northwestern finished a five-year capital campaign that raised $1.55 billion, exceeding its fundraising goal by $550 million.

    In 2014, Northwestern launched the “We Will” campaign with a fundraising goal of $3.75 billion. As of December 31, 2019, the university has received $4.78 billion from 164,026 donors.

    Sustainability

    In January 2009, the Green Power Partnership (sponsored by the EPA) listed Northwestern as one of the top 10 universities in the country in purchasing energy from renewable sources. The university matches 74 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of its annual energy use with Green-e Certified Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs). This green power commitment represents 30 percent of the university’s total annual electricity use and places Northwestern in the EPA’s Green Power Leadership Club. The Initiative for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern (ISEN), supporting research, teaching and outreach in these themes, was launched in 2008.

    Northwestern requires that all new buildings be LEED-certified. Silverman Hall on the Evanston campus was awarded Gold LEED Certification in 2010; Wieboldt Hall on the Chicago campus was awarded Gold LEED Certification in 2007, and the Ford Motor Company Engineering Design Center on the Evanston campus was awarded Silver LEED Certification in 2006. New construction and renovation projects will be designed to provide at least a 20% improvement over energy code requirements where feasible. At the beginning of the 2008–09 academic year, the university also released the Evanston Campus Framework Plan, which outlines plans for future development of the university’s Evanston campus. The plan not only emphasizes sustainable building construction, but also focuses on reducing the energy costs of transportation by optimizing pedestrian and bicycle access. Northwestern has had a comprehensive recycling program in place since 1990. The university recycles over 1,500 tons of waste, or 30% of all waste produced on campus, each year. All landscape waste at the university is composted.

    Academics

    Education and rankings

    Northwestern is a large, residential research university, and is frequently ranked among the top universities in the United States. The university is a leading institution in the fields of materials engineering, chemistry, business, economics, education, journalism, and communications. It is also prominent in law and medicine. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and the respective national professional organizations for chemistry, psychology, business, education, journalism, music, engineering, law, and medicine, the university offers 124 undergraduate programs and 145 graduate and professional programs. Northwestern conferred 2,190 bachelor’s degrees, 3,272 master’s degrees, 565 doctoral degrees, and 444 professional degrees in 2012–2013. Since 1951, Northwestern has awarded 520 honorary degrees. Northwestern also has chapters of academic honor societies such as Phi Beta Kappa (Alpha of Illinois), Eta Kappa Nu, Tau Beta Pi, Eta Sigma Phi (Beta Chapter), Lambda Pi Eta, and Alpha Sigma Lambda (Alpha Chapter).

    The four-year, full-time undergraduate program comprises the majority of enrollments at the university. Although there is no university-wide core curriculum, a foundation in the liberal arts and sciences is required for all majors; individual degree requirements are set by the faculty of each school. The university heavily emphasizes interdisciplinary learning, with 72% of undergrads combining two or more areas of study. Northwestern’s full-time undergraduate and graduate programs operate on an approximately 10-week academic quarter system with the academic year beginning in late September and ending in early June. Undergraduates typically take four courses each quarter and twelve courses in an academic year and are required to complete at least twelve quarters on campus to graduate. Northwestern offers honors, accelerated, and joint degree programs in medicine, science, mathematics, engineering, and journalism. The comprehensive doctoral graduate program has high coexistence with undergraduate programs.

    Despite being a mid-sized university, Northwestern maintains a relatively low student to faculty ratio of 6:1.

    Research

    Northwestern was elected to the Association of American Universities in 1917 and is classified as an R1 university, denoting “very high” research activity. Northwestern’s schools of management, engineering, and communication are among the most academically productive in the nation. The university received $887.3 million in research funding in 2019 and houses over 90 school-based and 40 university-wide research institutes and centers. Northwestern also supports nearly 1,500 research laboratories across two campuses, predominately in the medical and biological sciences.

    Northwestern is home to the Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics, Northwestern Institute for Complex Systems, Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center, Materials Research Center, Center for Quantum Devices, Institute for Policy Research, International Institute for Nanotechnology, Center for Catalysis and Surface Science, Buffet Center for International and Comparative Studies, the Initiative for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern, and the Argonne/Northwestern Solar Energy Research Center among other centers for interdisciplinary research.

    Student body

    Northwestern enrolled 8,186 full-time undergraduate, 9,904 full-time graduate, and 3,856 part-time students in the 2019–2020 academic year. The freshman retention rate for that year was 98%. 86% of students graduated after four years and 92% graduated after five years. These numbers can largely be attributed to the university’s various specialized degree programs, such as those that allow students to earn master’s degrees with a one or two year extension of their undergraduate program.

    The undergraduate population is drawn from all 50 states and over 75 foreign countries. 20% of students in the Class of 2024 were Pell Grant recipients and 12.56% were first-generation college students. Northwestern also enrolls the 9th-most National Merit Scholars of any university in the nation.

    In Fall 2014, 40.6% of undergraduate students were enrolled in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, 21.3% in the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, 14.3% in the School of Communication, 11.7% in the Medill School of Journalism, 5.7% in the Bienen School of Music, and 6.4% in the School of Education and Social Policy. The five most commonly awarded undergraduate degrees are economics, journalism, communication studies, psychology, and political science. The Kellogg School of Management’s MBA, the School of Law’s JD, and the Feinberg School of Medicine’s MD are the three largest professional degree programs by enrollment. With 2,446 students enrolled in science, engineering, and health fields, the largest graduate programs by enrollment include chemistry, integrated biology, material sciences, electrical and computer engineering, neuroscience, and economics.

    Athletics

    Northwestern is a charter member of the Big Ten Conference. It is the conference’s only private university and possesses the smallest undergraduate enrollment (the next-smallest member, the University of Iowa, is roughly three times as large, with almost 22,000 undergraduates).

    Northwestern fields 19 intercollegiate athletic teams (8 men’s and 11 women’s) in addition to numerous club sports. 12 of Northwestern’s varsity programs have had NCAA or bowl postseason appearances. Northwestern is one of five private AAU members to compete in NCAA Power Five conferences (the other four being Duke, Stanford, USC, and Vanderbilt) and maintains a 98% NCAA Graduation Success Rate, the highest among Football Bowl Subdivision schools.

    In 2018, the school opened the Walter Athletics Center, a $270 million state of the art lakefront facility for its athletics teams.

    Nickname and mascot

    Before 1924, Northwestern teams were known as “The Purple” and unofficially as “The Fighting Methodists.” The name Wildcats was bestowed upon the university in 1924 by Wallace Abbey, a writer for the Chicago Daily Tribune, who wrote that even in a loss to the University of Chicago, “Football players had not come down from Evanston; wildcats would be a name better suited to “[Coach Glenn] Thistletwaite’s boys.” The name was so popular that university board members made “Wildcats” the official nickname just months later. In 1972, the student body voted to change the official nickname to “Purple Haze,” but the new name never stuck.

    The mascot of Northwestern Athletics is “Willie the Wildcat”. Prior to Willie, the team mascot had been a live, caged bear cub from the Lincoln Park Zoo named Furpaw, who was brought to the playing field on game days to greet the fans. After a losing season however, the team decided that Furpaw was to blame for its misfortune and decided to select a new mascot. “Willie the Wildcat” made his debut in 1933, first as a logo and then in three dimensions in 1947, when members of the Alpha Delta fraternity dressed as wildcats during a Homecoming Parade.

    Traditions

    Northwestern’s official motto, “Quaecumque sunt vera,” was adopted by the university in 1890. The Latin phrase translates to “Whatsoever things are true” and comes from the Epistle of Paul to the Philippians (Philippians 4:8), in which St. Paul admonishes the Christians in the Greek city of Philippi. In addition to this motto, the university crest features a Greek phrase taken from the Gospel of John inscribed on the pages of an open book, ήρης χάριτος και αληθείας or “the word full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).
    Alma Mater is the Northwestern Hymn. The original Latin version of the hymn was written in 1907 by Peter Christian Lutkin, the first dean of the School of Music from 1883 to 1931. In 1953, then Director-of-Bands John Paynter recruited an undergraduate music student, Thomas Tyra (’54), to write an English version of the song, which today is performed by the Marching Band during halftime at Wildcat football games and by the orchestra during ceremonies and other special occasions.
    Purple became Northwestern’s official color in 1892, replacing black and gold after a university committee concluded that too many other universities had used these colors. Today, Northwestern’s official color is purple, although white is something of an official color as well, being mentioned in both the university’s earliest song, Alma Mater (1907) (“Hail to purple, hail to white”) and in many university guidelines.
    The Rock, a 6-foot high quartzite boulder donated by the Class of 1902, originally served as a water fountain. It was painted over by students in the 1940s as a prank and has since become a popular vehicle of self-expression on campus.
    Armadillo Day, commonly known as Dillo Day, is the largest student-run music festival in the country. The festival is hosted every Spring on Northwestern’s Lakefront.
    Primal Scream is held every quarter at 9 p.m. on the Sunday before finals week. Students lean out of windows or gather in courtyards and scream to help relieve stress.
    In the past, students would throw marshmallows during football games, but this tradition has since been discontinued.

    Philanthropy

    One of Northwestern’s most notable student charity events is Dance Marathon, the most established and largest student-run philanthropy in the nation. The annual 30-hour event is among the most widely-attended events on campus. It has raised over $1 million for charity every year since 2011 and has donated a total of $13 million to children’s charities since its conception.

    The Northwestern Community Development Corps (NCDC) is a student-run organization that connects hundreds of student volunteers to community development projects in Evanston and Chicago throughout the year. The group also holds a number of annual community events, including Project Pumpkin, a Halloween celebration that provides over 800 local children with carnival events and a safe venue to trick-or-treat each year.

    Many Northwestern students participate in the Freshman Urban Program, an initiative for students interested in community service to work on addressing social issues facing the city of Chicago, and the university’s Global Engagement Studies Institute (GESI) programs, including group service-learning expeditions in Asia, Africa, or Latin America in conjunction with the Foundation for Sustainable Development.

    Several internationally recognized non-profit organizations were established at Northwestern, including the World Health Imaging, Informatics and Telemedicine Alliance, a spin-off from an engineering student’s honors thesis.
    Media

    Print

    Established in 1881, The Daily Northwestern is the university’s main student newspaper and is published on weekdays during the academic year. It is directed entirely by undergraduate students and owned by the Students Publishing Company. Although it serves the Northwestern community, the Daily has no business ties to the university and is supported wholly by advertisers.
    North by Northwestern is an online undergraduate magazine established in September 2006 by students at the Medill School of Journalism. Published on weekdays, it consists of updates on news stories and special events throughout the year. It also publishes a quarterly print magazine.
    Syllabus is the university’s undergraduate yearbook. It is distributed in late May and features a culmination of the year’s events at Northwestern. First published in 1885, the yearbook is published by Students Publishing Company and edited by Northwestern students.
    Northwestern Flipside is an undergraduate satirical magazine. Founded in 2009, it publishes a weekly issue both in print and online.
    Helicon is the university’s undergraduate literary magazine. Established in 1979, it is published twice a year: a web issue is released in the winter and a print issue with a web complement is released in the spring.
    The Protest is Northwestern’s quarterly social justice magazine.

    The Northwestern division of Student Multicultural Affairs supports a number of publications for particular cultural groups including Ahora, a magazine about Hispanic and Latino/a culture and campus life; Al Bayan, published by the Northwestern Muslim-cultural Student Association; BlackBoard Magazine, a magazine centered around African-American student life; and NUAsian, a magazine and blog on Asian and Asian-American culture and issues.
    The Northwestern University Law Review is a scholarly legal publication and student organization at Northwestern University School of Law. Its primary purpose is to publish a journal of broad legal scholarship. The Law Review publishes six issues each year. Student editors make the editorial and organizational decisions and select articles submitted by professors, judges, and practitioners, as well as student pieces. The Law Review also publishes scholarly pieces weekly on the Colloquy.
    The Northwestern Journal of Technology and Intellectual Property is a law review published by an independent student organization at Northwestern University School of Law.
    The Northwestern Interdisciplinary Law Review is a scholarly legal publication published annually by an editorial board of Northwestern undergraduates. Its mission is to publish interdisciplinary legal research, drawing from fields such as history, literature, economics, philosophy, and art. Founded in 2008, the journal features articles by professors, law students, practitioners, and undergraduates. It is funded by the Buffett Center for International and Comparative Studies and the Office of the Provost.

    Web-based

    Established in January 2011, Sherman Ave is a humor website that often publishes content on Northwestern student life. Most of its staff writers are current Northwestern undergraduates writing under various pseudonyms. The website is popular among students for its interviews of prominent campus figures, Freshman Guide, and live-tweeting coverage of football games. In Fall 2012, the website promoted a satiric campaign to end the Vanderbilt University football team’s custom of clubbing baby seals.
    Politics & Policy is dedicated to the analysis of current events and public policy. Established in 2010 by students at the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, School of Communication, and Medill School of Journalism, the publication reaches students on more than 250 college campuses around the world. Run entirely by undergraduates, it is published several times a week and features material ranging from short summaries of events to extended research pieces. The publication is financed in part by the Buffett Center.
    Northwestern Business Review is a campus source for business news. Founded in 2005, it has an online presence as well as a quarterly print schedule.
    TriQuarterly Online (formerly TriQuarterly) is a literary magazine published twice a year featuring poetry, fiction, nonfiction, drama, literary essays, reviews, blog posts, and art.
    The Queer Reader is Northwestern’s first radical feminist and LGBTQ+ publication.

    Radio, film, and television

    WNUR (89.3 FM) is a 7,200-watt radio station that broadcasts to the city of Chicago and its northern suburbs. WNUR’s programming consists of music (jazz, classical, and rock), literature, politics, current events, varsity sports (football, men’s and women’s basketball, baseball, softball, and women’s lacrosse), and breaking news on weekdays.
    Studio 22 is a student-run production company that produces roughly ten films each year. The organization financed the first film Zach Braff directed, and many of its films have featured students who would later go into professional acting, including Zach Gilford of Friday Night Lights.
    Applause for a Cause is currently the only student-run production company in the nation to create feature-length films for charity. It was founded in 2010 and has raised over $5,000 to date for various local and national organizations across the United States.
    Northwestern News Network is a student television news and sports network, serving the Northwestern and Evanston communities. Its studios and newsroom are located on the fourth floor of the McCormick Tribune Center on Northwestern’s Evanston campus. NNN is funded by the Medill School of Journalism.

     
  • richardmitnick 9:11 pm on January 6, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Putting a new spin on computer hardware", A quantum property known as "electron spin", , , , , Liu envisions using antiferromagnetic materials in tandem with existing technologies to create hybrid computing devices that achieve even better performance., Liu takes advantage of the cutting-edge equipment inside MIT.nano-a shared 214000-square-foot nanoscale research center., Luqiao Liu utilizes a quantum property known as electron spin to build low-power high-performance computer memories and programmable computer chips., Nanotechnology, , Some of Liu’s most recent work at MIT involves building computer memories using nanoscale antiferromagnetic materials., Spin electronics, ,   

    From The MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab At The Massachusetts Institute of Technology: “Putting a new spin on computer hardware” Luqiao Liu 

    From The MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab

    At

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    12.21.22 [Just today in social media.]
    Adam Zewe

    Luqiao Liu utilizes a quantum property known as “electron spin” to build low-power high-performance computer memories and programmable computer chips.

    1
    MIT Associate Professor Luqiao Liu utilizes novel materials and electron spin to create next-generation memory hardware for computers that can store more information, use less power to operate, and retain information for a longer period of time. In this photo, Liu peers inside a sputtering deposition system, which is used to grow magnetic thin films. Photo: Jodi Hilton.

    2
    “In the scientific community, it had been under debate whether you can electrically switch the spin orientation inside these antiferromagnetic materials. Using experiments, we showed that you can,” Liu says. Photo: Jodi Hilton.

    Luqiao Liu was the kind of kid who would rather take his toys apart to see how they worked than play with them the way they were intended.

    Curiosity has been a driving force throughout his life, and it led him to MIT, where Liu is a newly tenured associate professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and a member of the Research Laboratory of Electronics.

    Rather than taking things apart, he’s now using novel materials and nanoscale fabrication techniques to build next-generation electronics that use dramatically less power than conventional devices. Curiosity still comes in handy, he says, especially since he and his collaborators work in the largely uncharted territory of spin electronics — a field that only emerged in the 1980s.

    “There are many challenges that we must overcome in our work. In “spin electronics”, there is still a gap between what could be done fundamentally and what has been done so far. There is a lot still to study in terms of getting better materials and finding new mechanisms so we can reach higher and higher performance,” says Liu, who is also a member of the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab.

    Electrons are subatomic particles that possess a fundamental quantum property known as spin. One way to visualize this is to think of a spinning top that circulates around itself, which gives the top “angular momentum”. That angular momentum, a product of the spinning top’s mass, radius, and velocity, is known as its spin.

    Although electrons don’t technically rotate on an axis like a top, they do possess the same kind of spin. Their angular momentum can be pointing “up” or “down.” Instead of using positive and negative electric charges to represent binary information (1s and 0s) in electronic devices, engineers can use the binary nature of electron spin.

    Because it takes less energy to change the spin direction of electrons, electron spin can be used to switch transistors in electronic devices using much less power than with traditional electronics. Transistors, the basic building blocks of modern electronics, are used to regulate electrical signals.

    Also, due to their angular momentum, electrons behave like tiny magnets. Researchers can use these magnetic properties to represent and store information in computer memory hardware. Liu and his collaborators are aiming to accelerate the process, removing the speed bottlenecks that hold back lower-power, higher-performance computer memory devices.

    Attracted to magnetism

    Liu’s path to studying computer memory hardware and spin electronics began with refrigerator magnets. As a young child, he wondered why a magnet would stick to the fridge.

    That early curiosity helped to spark his interest in science and math. As he delved into those subjects in high school and college, learning more about physics, chemistry, and electronics, his curiosity about magnetism and its uses in computers deepened.

    When he had the opportunity to pursue a PhD at Cornell University and join a research group that was studying magnetic materials, Liu found the perfect match.

    “I spent the next five or six years looking into new and more efficient ways to generate electron spin current and use that to write information into magnetic computer memories,” he says.

    While he was fascinated by the world of research, Liu wanted to try his hand at an industry career, so he joined IBM’s T.J. Watson Research Center after graduate school. There, his work focused on developing more efficient magnetic random access memory hardware for computers.

    “Making something finally work in a commercially available format is quite important, but I didn’t find myself fully engaged with that kind of fine-tuning work. I wanted to show the viability of very novel work — to prove that some new concept is possible,” Liu says. He joined MIT as an assistant professor in 2015.

    Material matters

    Some of Liu’s most recent work at MIT involves building computer memories using nanoscale antiferromagnetic materials. Antiferromagnetic materials, such as manganese, contain ions which act as tiny magnets due to electron spin. They arrange themselves so that ions spinning “up” and those spinning “down” are opposite one another, so the magnetism cancels out.

    Because they don’t produce magnetic fields, antiferromagnetic materials can be packed closer together onto a memory device, which leads to higher storage capacity. And their lack of a magnetic field means the spin states can be switched between “up” and “down” very quickly, so antiferromagnetic materials can switch transistors much faster than traditional materials, Liu explains.

    “In the scientific community, it had been under debate whether you can electrically switch the spin orientation inside these antiferromagnetic materials. Using experiments, we showed that you can,” he says.

    In his experiments, Liu often uses novel materials that were created just a few years ago, so all their properties are not yet well-understood. But he enjoys the challenge of integrating them into devices and testing their functionality. Finding better materials to leverage electron spin in computer memories can lead to devices that use less power, store more information, and retain that information for a longer period of time.

    Liu takes advantage of the cutting-edge equipment inside MIT.nano-a shared 214000-square-foot nanoscale research center, to build and test nanoscale devices. Having such state-of-the-art facilities at his fingertips is a boon for his research, he says.

    But for Liu, the human capital is what really fuels his work.

    “The colleagues and students are the most precious part of MIT. To be able to discuss questions and talk to people who are the smartest in the world, that is the most enjoyable experience of doing this job,” he says.

    He, his students, and colleagues are pushing the young field of spin electronics forward.

    In the future, he envisions using antiferromagnetic materials in tandem with existing technologies to create hybrid computing devices that achieve even better performance. He also plans to dive deeper into the world of quantum technologies. For instance, spin electronics could be used to efficiently control the flow of information in quantum circuits, he says.

    In quantum computing, signal isolation is critical — the information must flow in only one direction from the quantum circuit to the external circuit. He is exploring the use of a phenomenon known as a spin wave, which is the excitation of electron spin inside magnetic materials, to ensure the signal only moves in one direction.

    Whether he is investigating quantum computing or probing the properties of new materials, one thing holds true — Liu continues to be driven by an insatiable curiosity.

    “We are continually exploring, delving into many exciting and challenging new topics toward the goal of making better computing memory or digital logic devices using spin electronics,” he says.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings
    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    We are a community of scientists at MIT and IBM Research. We conduct AI research and work with global organizations to bridge algorithms to impact business and society.

    A Sustainable Model for Industry-University Collaboration

    The MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab is a community of scientists from MIT and IBM Research dedicated to pushing the frontiers of artificial intelligence and translating breakthroughs into real-world impact. Founded in 2017, the Lab works with industry to translate fundamental science into applications that solve immediate problems in the business world and beyond. The Lab currently manages a research portfolio of more than 80 projects, with an emphasis on data-driven, deep learning approaches to understanding language and the visual world and techniques for making large-scale AI systems more efficient and robust. The Lab is also developing AI systems for healthcare and a variety of decision-making applications. In all of its work, the Lab is committed to building trustworthy and socially responsible AI systems.

    We’re located in one of the fastest-growing technology centers in the world: Kendall Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Across the street from MIT, down the road from Harvard, and situated in a dense cluster of the world’s leading technology companies, Kendall Square is a vibrant ecosystem for innovators. In 2021, our IBM Research team moved into our new offices on MIT’s campus at 314 Main St.

    MIT Seal

    MIT Campus

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is a private land-grant research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The institute has an urban campus that extends more than a mile (1.6 km) alongside the Charles River. The institute also encompasses a number of major off-campus facilities such as the MIT Lincoln Laboratory , the MIT Bates Research and Engineering Center , and the Haystack Observatory , as well as affiliated laboratories such as the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and Whitehead Institute.

    Massachusettes Institute of Technology-Haystack Observatory Westford, Massachusetts, USA, Altitude 131 m (430 ft).

    4

    The Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL)

    Founded in 1861 in response to the increasing industrialization of the United States, Massachusetts Institute of Technology adopted a European polytechnic university model and stressed laboratory instruction in applied science and engineering. It has since played a key role in the development of many aspects of modern science, engineering, mathematics, and technology, and is widely known for its innovation and academic strength. It is frequently regarded as one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

    As of December 2020, 97 Nobel laureates, 26 Turing Award winners, and 8 Fields Medalists have been affiliated with MIT as alumni, faculty members, or researchers. In addition, 58 National Medal of Science recipients, 29 National Medals of Technology and Innovation recipients, 50 MacArthur Fellows, 80 Marshall Scholars, 3 Mitchell Scholars, 22 Schwarzman Scholars, 41 astronauts, and 16 Chief Scientists of the U.S. Air Force have been affiliated with The Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The university also has a strong entrepreneurial culture and MIT alumni have founded or co-founded many notable companies. Massachusetts Institute of Technology is a member of the Association of American Universities.

    Foundation and vision

    In 1859, a proposal was submitted to the Massachusetts General Court to use newly filled lands in Back Bay, Boston for a “Conservatory of Art and Science”, but the proposal failed. A charter for the incorporation of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, proposed by William Barton Rogers, was signed by John Albion Andrew, the governor of Massachusetts, on April 10, 1861.

    Rogers, a professor from the University of Virginia , wanted to establish an institution to address rapid scientific and technological advances. He did not wish to found a professional school, but a combination with elements of both professional and liberal education, proposing that:

    “The true and only practicable object of a polytechnic school is, as I conceive, the teaching, not of the minute details and manipulations of the arts, which can be done only in the workshop, but the inculcation of those scientific principles which form the basis and explanation of them, and along with this, a full and methodical review of all their leading processes and operations in connection with physical laws.”

    The Rogers Plan reflected the German research university model, emphasizing an independent faculty engaged in research, as well as instruction oriented around seminars and laboratories.

    Early developments

    Two days after The Massachusetts Institute of Technology was chartered, the first battle of the Civil War broke out. After a long delay through the war years, MIT’s first classes were held in the Mercantile Building in Boston in 1865. The new institute was founded as part of the Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act to fund institutions “to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes” and was a land-grant school. In 1863 under the same act, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts founded the Massachusetts Agricultural College, which developed as the University of Massachusetts Amherst ). In 1866, the proceeds from land sales went toward new buildings in the Back Bay.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology was informally called “Boston Tech”. The institute adopted the European polytechnic university model and emphasized laboratory instruction from an early date. Despite chronic financial problems, the institute saw growth in the last two decades of the 19th century under President Francis Amasa Walker. Programs in electrical, chemical, marine, and sanitary engineering were introduced, new buildings were built, and the size of the student body increased to more than one thousand.

    The curriculum drifted to a vocational emphasis, with less focus on theoretical science. The fledgling school still suffered from chronic financial shortages which diverted the attention of the MIT leadership. During these “Boston Tech” years, Massachusetts Institute of Technology faculty and alumni rebuffed Harvard University president (and former MIT faculty) Charles W. Eliot’s repeated attempts to merge MIT with Harvard College’s Lawrence Scientific School. There would be at least six attempts to absorb MIT into Harvard. In its cramped Back Bay location, MIT could not afford to expand its overcrowded facilities, driving a desperate search for a new campus and funding. Eventually, the MIT Corporation approved a formal agreement to merge with Harvard, over the vehement objections of MIT faculty, students, and alumni. However, a 1917 decision by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court effectively put an end to the merger scheme.

    In 1916, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology administration and the MIT charter crossed the Charles River on the ceremonial barge Bucentaur built for the occasion, to signify MIT’s move to a spacious new campus largely consisting of filled land on a one-mile-long (1.6 km) tract along the Cambridge side of the Charles River. The neoclassical “New Technology” campus was designed by William W. Bosworth and had been funded largely by anonymous donations from a mysterious “Mr. Smith”, starting in 1912. In January 1920, the donor was revealed to be the industrialist George Eastman of Rochester, New York, who had invented methods of film production and processing, and founded Eastman Kodak. Between 1912 and 1920, Eastman donated $20 million ($236.6 million in 2015 dollars) in cash and Kodak stock to MIT.

    Curricular reforms

    In the 1930s, President Karl Taylor Compton and Vice-President (effectively Provost) Vannevar Bush emphasized the importance of pure sciences like physics and chemistry and reduced the vocational practice required in shops and drafting studios. The Compton reforms “renewed confidence in the ability of the Institute to develop leadership in science as well as in engineering”. Unlike Ivy League schools, Massachusetts Institute of Technology catered more to middle-class families, and depended more on tuition than on endowments or grants for its funding. The school was elected to the Association of American Universities in 1934.

    Still, as late as 1949, the Lewis Committee lamented in its report on the state of education at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology that “the Institute is widely conceived as basically a vocational school”, a “partly unjustified” perception the committee sought to change. The report comprehensively reviewed the undergraduate curriculum, recommended offering a broader education, and warned against letting engineering and government-sponsored research detract from the sciences and humanities. The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences and the MIT Sloan School of Management were formed in 1950 to compete with the powerful Schools of Science and Engineering. Previously marginalized faculties in the areas of economics, management, political science, and linguistics emerged into cohesive and assertive departments by attracting respected professors and launching competitive graduate programs. The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences continued to develop under the successive terms of the more humanistically oriented presidents Howard W. Johnson and Jerome Wiesner between 1966 and 1980.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology‘s involvement in military science surged during World War II. In 1941, Vannevar Bush was appointed head of the federal Office of Scientific Research and Development and directed funding to only a select group of universities, including MIT. Engineers and scientists from across the country gathered at Massachusetts Institute of Technology ‘s Radiation Laboratory, established in 1940 to assist the British military in developing microwave radar. The work done there significantly affected both the war and subsequent research in the area. Other defense projects included gyroscope-based and other complex control systems for gunsight, bombsight, and inertial navigation under Charles Stark Draper’s Instrumentation Laboratory; the development of a digital computer for flight simulations under Project Whirlwind; and high-speed and high-altitude photography under Harold Edgerton. By the end of the war, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology became the nation’s largest wartime R&D contractor (attracting some criticism of Bush), employing nearly 4000 in the Radiation Laboratory alone and receiving in excess of $100 million ($1.2 billion in 2015 dollars) before 1946. Work on defense projects continued even after then. Post-war government-sponsored research at MIT included SAGE and guidance systems for ballistic missiles and Project Apollo.

    These activities affected The Massachusetts Institute of Technology profoundly. A 1949 report noted the lack of “any great slackening in the pace of life at the Institute” to match the return to peacetime, remembering the “academic tranquility of the prewar years”, though acknowledging the significant contributions of military research to the increased emphasis on graduate education and rapid growth of personnel and facilities. The faculty doubled and the graduate student body quintupled during the terms of Karl Taylor Compton, president of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology between 1930 and 1948; James Rhyne Killian, president from 1948 to 1957; and Julius Adams Stratton, chancellor from 1952 to 1957, whose institution-building strategies shaped the expanding university. By the 1950s, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology no longer simply benefited the industries with which it had worked for three decades, and it had developed closer working relationships with new patrons, philanthropic foundations and the federal government.

    In late 1960s and early 1970s, student and faculty activists protested against the Vietnam War and The Massachusetts Institute of Technology ‘s defense research. In this period Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s various departments were researching helicopters, smart bombs and counterinsurgency techniques for the war in Vietnam as well as guidance systems for nuclear missiles. The Union of Concerned Scientists was founded on March 4, 1969 during a meeting of faculty members and students seeking to shift the emphasis on military research toward environmental and social problems. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology ultimately divested itself from the Instrumentation Laboratory and moved all classified research off-campus to the MIT Lincoln Laboratory facility in 1973 in response to the protests. The student body, faculty, and administration remained comparatively unpolarized during what was a tumultuous time for many other universities. Johnson was seen to be highly successful in leading his institution to “greater strength and unity” after these times of turmoil. However, six Massachusetts Institute of Technology students were sentenced to prison terms at this time and some former student leaders, such as Michael Albert and George Katsiaficas, are still indignant about MIT’s role in military research and its suppression of these protests. (Richard Leacock’s film, November Actions, records some of these tumultuous events.)

    In the 1980s, there was more controversy at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology over its involvement in SDI (space weaponry) and CBW (chemical and biological warfare) research. More recently, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s research for the military has included work on robots, drones and ‘battle suits’.

    Recent history

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has kept pace with and helped to advance the digital age. In addition to developing the predecessors to modern computing and networking technologies, students, staff, and faculty members at Project MAC, the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, and the Tech Model Railroad Club wrote some of the earliest interactive computer video games like Spacewar! and created much of modern hacker slang and culture. Several major computer-related organizations have originated at MIT since the 1980s: Richard Stallman’s GNU Project and the subsequent Free Software Foundation were founded in the mid-1980s at the AI Lab; the MIT Media Lab was founded in 1985 by Nicholas Negroponte and Jerome Wiesner to promote research into novel uses of computer technology; the World Wide Web Consortium standards organization was founded at the Laboratory for Computer Science in 1994 by Tim Berners-Lee; the MIT OpenCourseWare project has made course materials for over 2,000 Massachusetts Institute of Technology classes available online free of charge since 2002; and the One Laptop per Child initiative to expand computer education and connectivity to children worldwide was launched in 2005.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology was named a sea-grant college in 1976 to support its programs in oceanography and marine sciences and was named a space-grant college in 1989 to support its aeronautics and astronautics programs. Despite diminishing government financial support over the past quarter century, MIT launched several successful development campaigns to significantly expand the campus: new dormitories and athletics buildings on west campus; the Tang Center for Management Education; several buildings in the northeast corner of campus supporting research into biology, brain and cognitive sciences, genomics, biotechnology, and cancer research; and a number of new “backlot” buildings on Vassar Street including the Stata Center. Construction on campus in the 2000s included expansions of the Media Lab, the Sloan School’s eastern campus, and graduate residences in the northwest. In 2006, President Hockfield launched the MIT Energy Research Council to investigate the interdisciplinary challenges posed by increasing global energy consumption.

    In 2001, inspired by the open source and open access movements, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology launched “OpenCourseWare” to make the lecture notes, problem sets, syllabi, exams, and lectures from the great majority of its courses available online for no charge, though without any formal accreditation for coursework completed. While the cost of supporting and hosting the project is high, OCW expanded in 2005 to include other universities as a part of the OpenCourseWare Consortium, which currently includes more than 250 academic institutions with content available in at least six languages. In 2011, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced it would offer formal certification (but not credits or degrees) to online participants completing coursework in its “MITx” program, for a modest fee. The “edX” online platform supporting MITx was initially developed in partnership with Harvard and its analogous “Harvardx” initiative. The courseware platform is open source, and other universities have already joined and added their own course content. In March 2009 the Massachusetts Institute of Technology faculty adopted an open-access policy to make its scholarship publicly accessible online.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has its own police force. Three days after the Boston Marathon bombing of April 2013, MIT Police patrol officer Sean Collier was fatally shot by the suspects Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, setting off a violent manhunt that shut down the campus and much of the Boston metropolitan area for a day. One week later, Collier’s memorial service was attended by more than 10,000 people, in a ceremony hosted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology community with thousands of police officers from the New England region and Canada. On November 25, 2013, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced the creation of the Collier Medal, to be awarded annually to “an individual or group that embodies the character and qualities that Officer Collier exhibited as a member of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology community and in all aspects of his life”. The announcement further stated that “Future recipients of the award will include those whose contributions exceed the boundaries of their profession, those who have contributed to building bridges across the community, and those who consistently and selflessly perform acts of kindness”.

    In September 2017, the school announced the creation of an artificial intelligence research lab called the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab. IBM will spend $240 million over the next decade, and the lab will be staffed by MIT and IBM scientists. In October 2018 MIT announced that it would open a new Schwarzman College of Computing dedicated to the study of artificial intelligence, named after lead donor and The Blackstone Group CEO Stephen Schwarzman. The focus of the new college is to study not just AI, but interdisciplinary AI education, and how AI can be used in fields as diverse as history and biology. The cost of buildings and new faculty for the new college is expected to be $1 billion upon completion.

    The Caltech/MIT Advanced aLIGO was designed and constructed by a team of scientists from California Institute of Technology , Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and industrial contractors, and funded by the National Science Foundation .

    Caltech /MIT Advanced aLigo

    It was designed to open the field of gravitational-wave astronomy through the detection of gravitational waves predicted by general relativity. Gravitational waves were detected for the first time by the LIGO detector in 2015. For contributions to the LIGO detector and the observation of gravitational waves, two Caltech physicists, Kip Thorne and Barry Barish, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology physicist Rainer Weiss won the Nobel Prize in physics in 2017. Weiss, who is also a Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate, designed the laser interferometric technique, which served as the essential blueprint for the LIGO.

    The mission of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is to advance knowledge and educate students in science, technology, and other areas of scholarship that will best serve the nation and the world in the twenty-first century. We seek to develop in each member of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology community the ability and passion to work wisely, creatively, and effectively for the betterment of humankind.

     
  • richardmitnick 5:55 pm on January 5, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "High-performance Visible-light Lasers that Fit on a Fingertip", , , , , Integrated photonics has been missing a key component to achieve complete miniaturization: high-performance chip-scale lasers., Integrated photonics has been revolutionizing the way we control light., , Microelectronics has changed the way we manipulate electricity., Miniaturizing systems into chips, Nanotechnology, , The first tunable and narrow line-width chip-scale lasers for visible wavelengths shorter than red, The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, Visible-light lasers that currently feed photonic chips are still benchtop and expensive.   

    From The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science At Columbia University: “High-performance Visible-light Lasers that Fit on a Fingertip” 

    From The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science

    At

    Columbia U bloc

    Columbia University

    1.4.23
    Holly Evarts,
    Director of Strategic Communications and Media Relations
    347-453-7408 (c)
    212-854-3206 (o)
    holly.evarts@columbia.edu

    In a significant advance for impactful technologies such as quantum optics and laser displays for AR/VR, Columbia Engineering’s Lipson Nanophotonics Group has invented the first tunable and narrow line-width chip-scale lasers for visible wavelengths shorter than red.

    1
    Illustration of the integrated laser platform created by the Lipson Nanophotonics Group, where a single chip generates narrow linewidth and tunable visible light covering all colors. Credit: Myles Marshall/Columbia Engineering.

    As technologies keep advancing at exponential rates and demand for new devices rises accordingly, miniaturizing systems into chips has become increasingly important. Microelectronics has changed the way we manipulate electricity, enabling sophisticated electronic products that are now an essential part of our daily lives. Similarly, integrated photonics has been revolutionizing the way we control light for applications such as data communications, imaging, sensing, and biomedical devices. By routing and shaping light using micro- and nanoscale components, integrated photonics shrinks full optical systems into the size of tiny chips. 

    Despite its success, integrated photonics has been missing a key component to achieve complete miniaturization: high-performance chip-scale lasers. While some progress has been made on near-infrared lasers, the visible-light lasers that currently feed photonic chips are still benchtop and expensive. Since visible light is essential for a wide range of applications including quantum optics, displays, and bioimaging, there is a need for tunable and narrow-linewidth chip-scale lasers emitting light of different colors.

    Researchers at Columbia Engineering’s Lipson Nanophotonics Group have created visible lasers of very pure colors from near-ultraviolet to near-infrared that fit on a fingertip. The colors of the lasers can be precisely tuned and extremely fast – up to 267 petahertz per second, which is critical for applications such as quantum optics. The team is the first to demonstrate chip-scale narrow-linewidth and tunable lasers for colors of light below red — green, cyan, blue, and violet. These inexpensive lasers also have the smallest footprint and shortest wavelength (404 nm) of any tunable and narrow-linewidth integrated laser emitting visible light. The study, which was first presented at the CLEO 2021 post-deadline session on May 14, 2021, was published online December 23, 2022, by Nature Photonics [below]. 

    “What’s exciting about this work is that we’ve used the power of integrated photonics to break the existing paradigm that high-performance visible lasers need to be benchtop and cost tens of thousands of dollars,” says the study’s lead author Mateus Corato Zanarella, a PhD student who works with Michal Lipson, Higgins Professor of Electrical Engineering and professor of Applied Physics. “Until now, it’s been impossible to shrink and mass-deploy technologies that require tunable and narrow-linewidth visible lasers. A notable example is quantum optics, which demands high-performance lasers of several colors in a single system. We expect that our findings will enable fully integrated visible light systems for existing and new technologies.” 

    Benefits of emitting wavelengths below red

    The importance of lasers emitting wavelengths shorter than red is clear when you consider some important applications. Displays, for example, require red, green, and blue light simultaneously to compose any color. In quantum optics, green, blue, and violet lasers are used for trapping and cooling atoms and ions. In underwater Lidar (Light Detection and Ranging), green or blue light is needed to avoid water absorption. However, at wavelengths shorter than red, the coupling and propagation losses of photonic integrated circuits increase significantly, which has prevented the realization of high-performance lasers at these colors. 

    Solving coupling and propagation loss issues

    The researchers solved the coupling loss problem by choosing Fabry-Perot (FP) diodes as the light sources, which minimizes the impact of the losses on the performance of the chip-scale lasers. Unlike other strategies that use different types of sources, the team’s approach enables the realization of lasers at record-short wavelengths (404 nm) while also providing scalability to high optical powers, FP laser diodes are inexpensive and compact solid-state lasers widely used in research and industry. However, they emit light of several wavelengths simultaneously and are not easily tunable, preventing them to be directly used for applications requiring pure and precise lasers. By combining them with the specially designed photonic chip, the researchers are able to modify the laser emission to be single-frequency, narrow-linewidth, and widely tunable. 

    The team overcame the propagation loss issue by designing a platform that minimizes both the material absorption and surface scattering losses simultaneously for all the visible wavelengths. To guide the light, they used silicon nitride, a dielectric widely used in the semiconductor industry that is transparent for visible light of all colors. Even though there is minimal absorption, the light still experiences loss due to unavoidable roughness from the fabrication processes. The team solved this problem by designing a photonic circuit with a special type of ring resonator. The ring has a variable width along its circumference, allowing for single-mode operation characteristic of narrow waveguides, and low loss characteristic of wide waveguides. The resulting photonic circuit provides a wavelength-selective optical feedback to the FP diodes that forces the laser to emit at a single desired wavelength with very narrow linewidth.

    “By combining these intricately designed pieces, we were able to build a robust and versatile platform that is scalable and works for all colors of light,” said Corato Zanarella. 

    Revolutionizing technologies

    “As a laser manufacturer we recognize that integrated photonics will have a tremendous impact on our industry and will enable a new generation of applications that have so far been impossible,” said Chris Haimberger, director of Laser Technology, TOPTICA Photonics, Inc. “This work represents an important step forward in the pursuit of compact and tunable visible lasers that will power future developments in computing, medicine, and industry.”

    Next steps

    The researchers, who have filed a provisional patent for their technology, are now exploring how to optically and electrically package the lasers to turn them into standalone units and use them as sources in chip-scale visible light engines, quantum experiments, and optical clocks.

    “In order to move forward, we have to be able to miniaturize and scale these systems, enabling them to eventually be incorporated in mass-deployed technologies,” said Lipson, a pioneer in silicon photonics whose research has strongly shaped the field from its inception decades ago, with foundational contributions in the active and passive devices that are part of any current photonic chip. She added, “Integrated photonics is an exciting field that is truly revolutionizing our world, from optical telecommunications to quantum information to biosensing.”

    Science paper:
    Nature Photonics

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Columbia University Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science is the engineering and applied science school of Columbia University. It was founded as the School of Mines in 1863 and then the School of Mines, Engineering and Chemistry before becoming the School of Engineering and Applied Science. On October 1, 1997, the school was renamed in honor of Chinese businessman Z.Y. Fu, who had donated $26 million to the school.

    The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science maintains a close research tie with other institutions including National Aeronautics and Space Administration, IBM, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and The Earth Institute. Patents owned by the school generate over $100 million annually for the university. Faculty and alumni are responsible for technological achievements including the developments of FM radio and the maser.

    The School’s applied mathematics, biomedical engineering, computer science and the financial engineering program in operations research are very famous and ranked high. The current faculty include 27 members of the National Academy of Engineering and one Nobel laureate. In all, the faculty and alumni of Columbia Engineering have won 10 Nobel Prizes in physics, chemistry, medicine, and economics.

    The school consists of approximately 300 undergraduates in each graduating class and maintains close links with its undergraduate liberal arts sister school Columbia College which shares housing with SEAS students.

    Original charter of 1754

    Included in the original charter for Columbia College was the direction to teach “the arts of Number and Measuring, of Surveying and Navigation […] the knowledge of […] various kinds of Meteors, Stones, Mines and Minerals, Plants and Animals, and everything useful for the Comfort, the Convenience and Elegance of Life.” Engineering has always been a part of Columbia, even before the establishment of any separate school of engineering.

    An early and influential graduate from the school was John Stevens, Class of 1768. Instrumental in the establishment of U.S. patent law. Stevens procured many patents in early steamboat technology; operated the first steam ferry between New York and New Jersey; received the first railroad charter in the U.S.; built a pioneer locomotive; and amassed a fortune, which allowed his sons to found the Stevens Institute of Technology.

    When Columbia University first resided on Wall Street, engineering did not have a school under the Columbia umbrella. After Columbia outgrew its space on Wall Street, it relocated to what is now Midtown Manhattan in 1857. Then President Barnard and the Trustees of the University, with the urging of Professor Thomas Egleston and General Vinton, approved the School of Mines in 1863. The intention was to establish a School of Mines and Metallurgy with a three-year program open to professionally motivated students with or without prior undergraduate training. It was officially founded in 1864 under the leadership of its first dean, Columbia professor Charles F. Chandler, and specialized in mining and mineralogical engineering. An example of work from a student at the School of Mines was William Barclay Parsons, Class of 1882. He was an engineer on the Chinese railway and the Cape Cod and Panama Canals. Most importantly he worked for New York, as a chief engineer of the city’s first subway system, the Interborough Rapid Transit Company. Opened in 1904, the subway’s electric cars took passengers from City Hall to Brooklyn, the Bronx, and the newly renamed and relocated Columbia University in Morningside Heights, its present location on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

    Columbia U Campus
    Columbia University was founded in 1754 as King’s College by royal charter of King George II of England. It is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York and the fifth oldest in the United States.

    University Mission Statement

    Columbia University is one of the world’s most important centers of research and at the same time a distinctive and distinguished learning environment for undergraduates and graduate students in many scholarly and professional fields. The University recognizes the importance of its location in New York City and seeks to link its research and teaching to the vast resources of a great metropolis. It seeks to attract a diverse and international faculty and student body, to support research and teaching on global issues, and to create academic relationships with many countries and regions. It expects all areas of the University to advance knowledge and learning at the highest level and to convey the products of its efforts to the world.

    Columbia University is a private Ivy League research university in New York City. Established in 1754 on the grounds of Trinity Church in Manhattan Columbia is the oldest institution of higher education in New York and the fifth-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. It is one of nine colonial colleges founded prior to the Declaration of Independence, seven of which belong to the Ivy League. Columbia is ranked among the top universities in the world by major education publications.

    Columbia was established as King’s College by royal charter from King George II of Great Britain in reaction to the founding of Princeton College. It was renamed Columbia College in 1784 following the American Revolution, and in 1787 was placed under a private board of trustees headed by former students Alexander Hamilton and John Jay. In 1896, the campus was moved to its current location in Morningside Heights and renamed Columbia University.

    Columbia scientists and scholars have played an important role in scientific breakthroughs including brain-computer interface; the laser and maser; nuclear magnetic resonance; the first nuclear pile; the first nuclear fission reaction in the Americas; the first evidence for plate tectonics and continental drift; and much of the initial research and planning for the Manhattan Project during World War II. Columbia is organized into twenty schools, including four undergraduate schools and 15 graduate schools. The university’s research efforts include the Lamont–Doherty Earth Observatory, the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, and accelerator laboratories with major technology firms such as IBM. Columbia is a founding member of the Association of American Universities and was the first school in the United States to grant the M.D. degree. With over 14 million volumes, Columbia University Library is the third largest private research library in the United States.

    The university’s endowment stands at $11.26 billion in 2020, among the largest of any academic institution. As of October 2020, Columbia’s alumni, faculty, and staff have included: five Founding Fathers of the United States—among them a co-author of the United States Constitution and a co-author of the Declaration of Independence; three U.S. presidents; 29 foreign heads of state; ten justices of the United States Supreme Court, one of whom currently serves; 96 Nobel laureates; five Fields Medalists; 122 National Academy of Sciences members; 53 living billionaires; eleven Olympic medalists; 33 Academy Award winners; and 125 Pulitzer Prize recipients.

     
  • richardmitnick 5:06 pm on January 5, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Cheap and sustainable hydrogen through solar power", A new kind of solar panel developed at the University of Michigan has achieved 9% efficiency in converting water into hydrogen and oxygen—mimicking a crucial step in natural photosynthesis., , , , , Computer Scinence and Engineering, Currently humans produce hydrogen from the fossil fuel methane using a great deal of fossil energy in the process., , , Hydrogen is attractive as both a standalone fuel and as a component in sustainable fuels made with recycled carbon dioxide., Nanotechnology, Scientists believe that artificial photosynthesis devices will ultimately be much more efficient than natural photosynthesis., The biggest benefit is driving down the cost of sustainable hydrogen., The new process is nearly 10 times more efficient than solar water-splitting experiments of its kind., , Withstanding high temperatures and the light of 160 suns a new catalyst is 10 times more efficient than previous sun-powered water-splitting devices of its kind.   

    From The University of Michigan: “Cheap and sustainable hydrogen through solar power” 

    U Michigan bloc

    From The University of Michigan

    1.4.23
    Kate McAlpine
    (734) 647-7087
    kmca@umich.edu

    Withstanding high temperatures and the light of 160 suns a new catalyst is 10 times more efficient than previous sun-powered water-splitting devices of its kind.


    A More Efficient Method for Harvesting Hydrogen.

    A new kind of solar panel developed at the University of Michigan has achieved 9% efficiency in converting water into hydrogen and oxygen—mimicking a crucial step in natural photosynthesis. Outdoors, it represents a major leap in the technology, nearly 10 times more efficient than solar water-splitting experiments of its kind.

    But the biggest benefit is driving down the cost of sustainable hydrogen. This is enabled by shrinking the semiconductor, typically the most expensive part of the device. The team’s self-healing semiconductor withstands concentrated light equivalent to 160 suns.

    1
    Peng Zhou uses a large lens to concentrate sunlight onto the water-splitting catalyst. Outdoors, the device was ten times more efficient than previous efforts at solar water splitting. Image credit: Brenda Ahearn/Michigan Engineering, Communications and Marketing.

    Currently humans produce hydrogen from the fossil fuel methane using a great deal of fossil energy in the process. However, plants harvest hydrogen atoms from water using sunlight. As humanity tries to reduce its carbon emissions, hydrogen is attractive as both a standalone fuel and as a component in sustainable fuels made with recycled carbon dioxide. Likewise, it is needed for many chemical processes, producing fertilizers for instance.

    “In the end, we believe that artificial photosynthesis devices will be much more efficient than natural photosynthesis, which will provide a path toward carbon neutrality,” said Zetian Mi, U-M professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering who led the study reported in Nature [below].

    2
    A close-up of the panel with the semiconductor catalyst and water inside. Bubbles of hydrogen and oxygen travel up the slope to be separated in the canister (maybe). Photo: Brenda Ahearn/Michigan Engineering, Communications and Marketing.

    The outstanding result comes from two advances. The first is the ability to concentrate the sunlight without destroying the semiconductor that harnesses the light.

    “We reduced the size of the semiconductor by more than 100 times compared to some semiconductors only working at low light intensity,” said Peng Zhou, U-M research fellow in electrical and computer engineering and first author of the study. “Hydrogen produced by our technology could be very cheap.”

    And the second is using both the higher energy part of the solar spectrum to split water and the lower part of the spectrum to provide heat that encourages the reaction. The magic is enabled by a semiconductor catalyst that improves itself with use, resisting the degradation that such catalysts usually experience when they harness sunlight to drive chemical reactions.

    3
    Ishtiaque Ahmed Navid, a doctoral student in Electrical and Computer Engineering, operates the molecular beam epitaxy device in which he grew the semiconductor that harnesses sunlight to split water. Image credit: Brenda Ahearn/Michigan Engineering, Communications and Marketing.

    In addition to handling high light intensities, it can thrive in high temperatures that are punishing to computer semiconductors. Higher temperatures speed up the water splitting process, and the extra heat also encourages the hydrogen and oxygen to remain separate rather than renewing their bonds and forming water once more. Both of these helped the team to harvest more hydrogen.

    For the outdoor experiment, Zhou set up a lens about the size of a house window to focus sunlight onto an experimental panel just a few inches across. Within that panel, the semiconductor catalyst was covered in a layer of water, bubbling with the hydrogen and oxygen gasses it separated.

    The catalyst is made of indium gallium nitride nanostructures, grown onto a silicon surface. That semiconductor wafer captures the light, converting it into free electrons and holes—positively charged gaps left behind when electrons are liberated by the light. The nanostructures are peppered with nanoscale balls of metal, 1/2000th of a millimeter across, that use those electrons and holes to help direct the reaction.

    4
    Peng Zhou, right, and Yuyang Pan, first year PhD student, observe the machine in which the semiconductor nanowires are grown. Image credit: Brenda Ahearn/Michigan Engineering, Communications and Marketing.

    A simple insulating layer atop the panel keeps the temperature at a toasty 75 degrees Celsius, or 167 degrees Fahrenheit, warm enough to help encourage the reaction while also being cool enough for the semiconductor catalyst to perform well. The outdoor version of the experiment, with less reliable sunlight and temperature, achieved 6.1% efficiency at turning the energy from the sun into hydrogen fuel. However, indoors, the system achieved 9% efficiency.

    The next challenges the team intends to tackle are to further improve the efficiency and to achieve ultrahigh purity hydrogen that can be directly fed into fuel cells.

    Some of the intellectual property related to this work has been licensed to NS Nanotech Inc. and NX Fuels Inc., which were co-founded by Mi. The University of Michigan and Mi have a financial interest in both companies.

    This work was supported by the National Science Foundation, the Department of Defense, the Michigan Translational Research and Commercialization Innovation Hub, the Blue Sky Program in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan, and by the Army Research Office.

    Science paper:
    Nature

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please support STEM education in your local school system

    Stem Education Coalition

    U MIchigan Campus

    The University of Michigan is a public research university located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States. Originally, founded in 1817 in Detroit as the Catholepistemiad, or University of Michigania, 20 years before the Michigan Territory officially became a state, the University of Michigan is the state’s oldest university. The university moved to Ann Arbor in 1837 onto 40 acres (16 ha) of what is now known as Central Campus. Since its establishment in Ann Arbor, the university campus has expanded to include more than 584 major buildings with a combined area of more than 34 million gross square feet (781 acres or 3.16 km²), and has two satellite campuses located in Flint and Dearborn. The University was one of the founding members of the Association of American Universities.

    Considered one of the foremost research universities in the United States, the university has very high research activity and its comprehensive graduate program offers doctoral degrees in the humanities, social sciences, and STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) as well as professional degrees in business, medicine, law, pharmacy, nursing, social work and dentistry. Michigan’s body of living alumni (as of 2012) comprises more than 500,000. Besides academic life, Michigan’s athletic teams compete in Division I of the NCAA and are collectively known as the Wolverines. They are members of the Big Ten Conference.

    At over $12.4 billion in 2019, Michigan’s endowment is among the largest of any university. As of October 2019, 53 MacArthur “genius award” winners (29 alumni winners and 24 faculty winners), 26 Nobel Prize winners, six Turing Award winners, one Fields Medalist and one Mitchell Scholar have been affiliated with the university. Its alumni include eight heads of state or government, including President of the United States Gerald Ford; 38 cabinet-level officials; and 26 living billionaires. It also has many alumni who are Fulbright Scholars and MacArthur Fellows.

    Research

    Michigan is one of the founding members (in the year 1900) of the Association of American Universities. With over 6,200 faculty members, 73 of whom are members of the National Academy and 471 of whom hold an endowed chair in their discipline, the university manages one of the largest annual collegiate research budgets of any university in the United States. According to the National Science Foundation, Michigan spent $1.6 billion on research and development in 2018, ranking it 2nd in the nation. This figure totaled over $1 billion in 2009. The Medical School spent the most at over $445 million, while the College of Engineering was second at more than $160 million. U-M also has a technology transfer office, which is the university conduit between laboratory research and corporate commercialization interests.

    In 2009, the university signed an agreement to purchase a facility formerly owned by Pfizer. The acquisition includes over 170 acres (0.69 km^2) of property, and 30 major buildings comprising roughly 1,600,000 square feet (150,000 m^2) of wet laboratory space, and 400,000 square feet (37,000 m^2) of administrative space. At the time of the agreement, the university’s intentions for the space were not set, but the expectation was that the new space would allow the university to ramp up its research and ultimately employ in excess of 2,000 people.

    The university is also a major contributor to the medical field with the EKG and the gastroscope. The university’s 13,000-acre (53 km^2) biological station in the Northern Lower Peninsula of Michigan is one of only 47 Biosphere Reserves in the United States.

    In the mid-1960s U-M researchers worked with IBM to develop a new virtual memory architectural model that became part of IBM’s Model 360/67 mainframe computer (the 360/67 was initially dubbed the 360/65M where the “M” stood for Michigan). The Michigan Terminal System (MTS), an early time-sharing computer operating system developed at U-M, was the first system outside of IBM to use the 360/67’s virtual memory features.

    U-M is home to the National Election Studies and the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index. The Correlates of War project, also located at U-M, is an accumulation of scientific knowledge about war. The university is also home to major research centers in optics, reconfigurable manufacturing systems, wireless integrated microsystems, and social sciences. The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute and the Life Sciences Institute are located at the university. The Institute for Social Research (ISR), the nation’s longest-standing laboratory for interdisciplinary research in the social sciences, is home to the Survey Research Center, Research Center for Group Dynamics, Center for Political Studies, Population Studies Center, and Inter-Consortium for Political and Social Research. Undergraduate students are able to participate in various research projects through the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) as well as the UROP/Creative-Programs.

    The U-M library system comprises nineteen individual libraries with twenty-four separate collections—roughly 13.3 million volumes. U-M was the original home of the JSTOR database, which contains about 750,000 digitized pages from the entire pre-1990 backfile of ten journals of history and economics, and has initiated a book digitization program in collaboration with Google. The University of Michigan Press is also a part of the U-M library system.

    In the late 1960s U-M, together with Michigan State University and Wayne State University, founded the Merit Network, one of the first university computer networks. The Merit Network was then and remains today administratively hosted by U-M. Another major contribution took place in 1987 when a proposal submitted by the Merit Network together with its partners IBM, MCI, and the State of Michigan won a national competition to upgrade and expand the National Science Foundation Network (NSFNET) backbone from 56,000 to 1.5 million, and later to 45 million bits per second. In 2006, U-M joined with Michigan State University and Wayne State University to create the the University Research Corridor. This effort was undertaken to highlight the capabilities of the state’s three leading research institutions and drive the transformation of Michigan’s economy. The three universities are electronically interconnected via the Michigan LambdaRail (MiLR, pronounced ‘MY-lar’), a high-speed data network providing 10 Gbit/s connections between the three university campuses and other national and international network connection points in Chicago.

     
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