A Week in Review: 7/7/13 – 7/13/13

July 8, 2013

Not-weak knots bolster carbon fiber
Large flakes of graphene oxide are the essential ingredient in a new recipe for robust carbon fiber created at Rice University. The fiber spun at Rice is unique for the strength of its knots. Most fibers are most likely to snap under tension at the knot, but Rice’s fiber demonstrates what the researchers refer to as “100 percent knot efficiency,” where the fiber is as likely to break anywhere along its length as at the knot.
http://news.rice.edu/2013/07/08/not-weak-knots-bolster-carbon-fiber-2/

Humboldt-Laureate Prof. Federico Capasso as Guest Scientist at the Marx-Planck-Institute of Quantum Optics
In July 2013, the physicist Federico Capasso will join the Marx Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) as a guest scientist. Prof. Capasso is the Robert L. Wallace Professor of Applied Physics and a Vinton Hayes Senior Research Fellow in Electrical Engineering at Harvard University (Cambridge, MA USA). In May 2013, he was honoured with a Humboldt Research Award. This award is granted by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation to outstanding foreign academics at the peak of their careers. Award winners are invited to spend a period of six to twelve months on academic collaboration with specialist colleagues in Germany.
http://www.mpq.mpg.de/cms/mpq/en/news/awards/13_07_08.html  

July 9, 2013

Air Force Fiscal Year 2014 Young Investigator Research Program (YIP) BAA posted on Grants.gov
The Young Investigator Research Program (YIP) supports young scientists and engineers in Air Force relevant disciplines and is designed to promote innovative research in fields such as: energy, power and propulsion, materials interactions in extreme environments, aero-structure interactions and control, hierarchical design and characterization of materials, space architecture and protection, thermal control, mathematical, information and computer sciences, biology, behavioral sciences, plasma and quantum physics, theoretical and experimental physics, microwave and photonic systems, information and signal process, and materials-processing techniques. The awards foster creative basic research, enhance early career development of outstanding young investigators, and increase opportunities to recognize Air Force mission and challenges in science and engineering.
http://go.usa.gov/j5dm

July 11, 2013

Imperfect graphene renders ‘electrical highways’
Just an atom thick, 200 times stronger than steel and near-perfect conductor, graphene’s future in electronics is all but certain. But to make this carbon supermaterial useful, it needs to be a semiconductor– a material than can switch between insulating and conducting states, which forms the basis for all electronics today. Combining experiment and theory, Cornell researchers have moved a step closer to making graphene a useful, controllable material. They showed that when grown in stacked layers, graphene produces some specific defects that influence its conductivity.
http://news.cornell.edu/stories/2013/07/imperfect-graphene-renders-electrical-highways

A sound idea: Innovative lens takes shape as commercial product
On a late night in February 2011, two Princeton University researchers packed a small object into a box and set it out for the morning mail. The engineers had spent four years developing a new type of microscope lens that focuses in response to sound waves. They were sending their innovation to their first customer.
http://www.princeton.edu/main/news/archive/S37/17/38C24/index.xml