Week in Review: 6/14/15 – 6/20/15

June 18, 2015

Saharan silver ants use hair to survive Earth’s hottest temperatures
In a study published online June 18 in the journal Science, the researchers demonstrate how the ant’s uniquely shaped silver hairs work across an extremely broad range of the electromagnetic spectrum to reflect sunlight and shed heat. The findings could lead to biologically inspired coatings for passive radiative cooling of objects such as buildings, vehicles or even clothing.

June 17, 2015

Mantis Shrimp Inspires New Body Armor and Football Helmet Design
The mantis shrimp is able to repeatedly pummel the shells of prey using a hammer-like appendage that can withstand rapid-fire blows by neutralizing certain frequencies of “shear waves,” according to a new research paper by University of California, Riverside and Purdue University engineers.

June 16, 2015

Inkjet Inks Made of Bioactive Silk Could Yield Smart Bandages, Bacteria-Sensing Surgical Gloves & More
Silk inks containing enzymes, antibiotics, antibodies, nanoparticles and growth factors could turn inkjet printing into a new, more effective tool for therapeutics, regenerative medicine and biosensing, according to new research led by Tufts University biomedical engineers and published June 16 in the journal Advanced Materials online in advance of print.

June 15, 2015

Researchers grind nanotubes to get nanoribbons
A simple way to turn carbon nanotubes into valuable graphene nanoribbons may be to grind them, according to research led by Rice University. The trick, said Rice materials scientist Pulickel Ajayan, is to mix two types of chemically modified nanotubes. When they come into contact during grinding, they react and unzip, a process that until now has depended largely on reactions in harsh chemical solutions.