Physical Sciences

Offshore wind power’s big break

The World Energy Council states that the capacity of offshore wind generation installed globally was around 12,000 MW by the end of 2015 with over 92 percent of these installations located in European waters. This will require innovative solutions such as the work being done by Professor Mike Barnes and his team at the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Manchester University, […]

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Physical Sciences

Lysenin channels as single-molecule sensors, controlled nano-valves, and memory elements

Professor Daniel Fologea, an associate professor at Boise State University, studies the way cells interact with their environment by selective transportation of ions and molecules through the cell membrane. His research group examines these interactions in order to understand how diseases occur, and how to use them for biosensing, early diagnosis, and to cure diseases like cancer. Any cell in your […]

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Physical Sciences

Pushing the boundaries – interrogating magnetism at material interfaces

In order to keep improving electronic devices, whether it be computers or sensors, researchers must understand what is going on, on an atomic level. Understanding the behaviour of ions within materials is difficult enough, but when you put two materials together it gets much more complicated. Dr Mikel Holcomb, Associate Professor from West Virginia University, has dedicated her work to finding […]

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Physical Sciences

Understanding how ‘grain boundaries’ cause the structural integrity of materials fail

After receiving a Young Investigator Program award from the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Dr Srikanth Patala and his research team at North Carolina State University have studied the impact of ‘grain boundaries’ on the structural integrity of many materials used in critical applications. This includes materials commonly found in jet engine turbine blades, nuclear power stations and internal […]

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Physical Sciences

Crystal clear: how topography affects crystal formation

Dr Hugo Christenson is a Reader in the Molecular and Nanoscale Physics Group at the University of Leeds. His present research interests lie in crystallisation – an important process across multiple areas of science. Specifically, Dr Christenson’s work provides in-depth insight into why crystals first form in topographical defects, like cracks and crevices. Have you ever sat on a park […]

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Physical Sciences

From ears to engineering

Sometimes the solutions to engineering questions have already been answered – by animals! Rather than ‘reinvent the wheel,’ therefore, Professor James Windmill and his lab team at the University of Strathclyde choose to learn from some of the remarkable feats of engineering found in the natural world. In particular, his research focuses on using ideas from insect hearing to develop […]

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