A new peer review paper offers one of the most comprehensive reviews of advancements to come in contact lenses, catapulting the commonly-used medical device to applications well beyond refractive error correction, e.g., disease detection and treatment, theranostics and shape shifting for real-time vision enhancement.
Researchers have demonstrated that stretching shape-memory polymers embedded with clusters of gold nanoparticles alters their plasmon-coupling, giving rise to desirable optical properties. One potential application for the material is a sensor that relies on optical properties to track an object or environment's thermal history.
Materials that contain special polymer molecules may someday be able to warn us when they are about to fail, researchers said. Engineers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign have improved their previously developed force-sensitive molecules, called mechanophores, to produce reversible, rapid and vibrant color change when a force is applied.
NIMS and RIKEN have succeeded in synthesizing the longest ever bottlebrush polymer. This polymer--resembling a green foxtail--is composed of a main chain and numerous side chains grafting from it. The team also succeeded in giving various chemical properties to the ultralong bottlebrush polymer. These achievements are expected to substantially advance the current synthetic methods of bottlebrush polymers. This technique may be applicable to the development of flexible and low-friction polymeric materials.
Researchers from Tokyo Medical and Dental University (TMDU) have found that biomaterials with high molecular mobility can give mechanical cues to liver immune cells to induce an inflammatory response. Different polyrotaxane-coated surface mobilities resulted in varied cell responses. These valuable findings suggest that this technology could possibly be developed into a treatment for modulating immune system activity in humans, which could revolutionize immunomodulation and regenerative medicine.
Since the introduction of plastic (polymer) banknotes in 2016, the number of counterfeit notes on the streets has increased, however, researchers from Department of Computer Science at the University of Warwick have developed a novel technique called Polymer Substrate Fingerprinting, which identifies every banknote's fingerprint which is unique and unclonable.
A Northwestern research team including Professors Justin Notestein and Peter Stair has demonstrated a new approach to chemical catalysis that results in higher yields of propylene -- the basis for many plastics -- using less energy.
Osaka University researchers developed a system of self-assembling polymer microparticles with adjustable concentrations of two types of attached residues. They found that tuning the concentration of each type allowed them to control the aggregation and resulting shape of the clusters. This work may lead to advances in "smart" materials, including sensors and damage-resistant surfaces.
Researchers from Chalmers University of Technology have produced a structural battery that performs ten times better than all previous versions. It contains carbon fibre that serves simultaneously as an electrode, conductor, and load-bearing material. Their latest research breakthrough paves the way for essentially 'massless' energy storage in vehicles and other technology.
A novel form of polymerized estrogen developed at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute can provide neuroprotection when implanted at the site of a spinal cord injury -- preventing further damage. This promising result, found in a preclinical model, was recently published in ACS Chemical Neuroscience, and it lays the groundwork for further advancement of this new biomaterial.