Argonne National Laboratory

Feature Stories

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Argonne engineer Aaron Greco works to improve the reliability of wind turbines using tribology. (Click to view larger.)
7 things you might not know about tribology

Objects rubbing together cause friction which eventually wears down one or the other surface. Finding ways to reduce this friction—in your knees, in an engine, or in factory machinery—can help scientists develop stronger materials that last longer and slide easier, which increases efficiency.

March 7, 2016
Researchers used intense X-rays at the Advanced Photon Source to study how the bombardier beetle sprays hot, caustic chemicals when threatened. Top: The bombardier beetle can aim its noxious spray from two separate rear glands. Bottom: This colored scanning electron microscope image shows the structure of the two glands. To protect the beetle’s insides, the chambers holding the chemicals are lined with a thick layer of protective cuticle, shown in brown. Areas with less cuticle—and more flexibility—are shown in blue. The white arrow identifies the reaction chamber; the purple arrow shows the junction between the reaction chamber and the exit channel; and the yellow arrow points out the exit channel dorsal membrane. (Click to view larger.)
10 cool science and technology stories from Argonne in 2015

As 2015 draws to a close, we’re looking back at some of the coolest stories that came out of research conducted by Argonne scientists and engineers this year.

December 23, 2015
INCREASE members visited Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source to network and learn how to submit competitive proposals for their research. (Click image to enlarge.)
Keys to Access: Argonne-INCREASE partnership opens doors to collaboration

Argonne hosted 34 members of the Interdisciplinary Consortium for Research and Education and Access in Science and Engineering (INCREASE) group for a two day workshop.

October 27, 2015
Argonne researcher Yuelin Li holds a sample holder containing a single gold nanorod in water. Li and colleagues discovered that nanorods melt in three distinct phases when grouped in large ensembles. Their research will inform the creation of next-generation technologies such as water purification systems, battery materials and cancer research. Photo by Mark Lopez/Argonne National Laboratory. (Click to enlarge.)
Shape-shifting groups of nanorods release heat differently

Researchers at Argonne have revealed previously unobserved behaviors that show how the transfer of heat at the nanoscale causes nanoparticles to change shape in groups.

February 18, 2015
Argonne researchers produce trace amounts of hydrogen with visible light by merging light-collecting proteins from a single-celled organism with a graphene platform. Both graphene and protein absorb the light and re-direct electrons towards the titanium dioxide. Electrons interact with protons at the site of the platinum nanoparticles to produce hydrogen. Credit: John Lambert. (Click image to enlarge)
A nanosized hydrogen generator

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have created a small scale “hydrogen generator” that uses light and a two-dimensional graphene platform to boost production of the hard-to-make element.

September 19, 2014
"This new method gives a way of delivering the dose of therapeutic cargo much more directly, which will enable us to have the same overall effect with a lower total dose, reducing the unpleasant and dangerous side effects of chemotherapy," said oncologist Ezra Cohen, an author of the study. Click to enlarge.
New nanotech invention improves effectiveness of the 'penicillin of cancer'

By combining magnetic nanoparticles with one of the most common and effective chemotherapy drugs, Argonne researchers have created a way to deliver anti-cancer drugs directly into the nucleus of cancer cells.

August 13, 2014
A recent Argonne study has called into question the existence of silicene, thought to be one of the world’s newest and hottest two-dimensional nanomaterials. Pictured are researchers (clockwise from bottom left) Nathan Guisinger, Andrew J. Mannix, Brian Kiraly and Brandon L. Fisher. Photo credit: Wes Agresta, Argonne National Laboratory. Click image to enlarge.
Silicene: To be or not to be?

A recent study at Argonne National Laboratory has called into question the existence of silicene, thought to be one of the world’s newest and hottest two-dimensional nanomaterials. The study may have great implications to a multi-billion dollar electronics industry that seeks to revolutionize technology at scales 80,000 times smaller than the human hair.

July 24, 2014
"I’m a climate modeler, so we’re trying to pin down what’s happening and what might happen, and for that we take the math approach." -Rao Kotamarthi, Argonne atmospheric scientist
Crowdsource: How do we tackle climate change?

"Crowdsource" asks scientists from varying fields to offer their unique perspectives on a universal problem. Today's question: How do we start tackling climate change?

June 1, 2014
Katie Carrado Gregar is a nanoscientist and the user/outreach programs manager at the Center for Nanoscale Materials.
Ask a scientist: Nanotech in our lives

"Is there nanotechnology already in my consumer products?" Argonne nanoscientist Katie Carrado Gregar answers.

June 1, 2014
Argonne materials scientist Seungbum Hong studies the internal structure of piezoelectric materials. These are certain types of crystals that generate electricity when you squeeze them.
Batteries not needed?

The day is coming when heartbeats power pacemakers, sneakers charge cell phones during a jog, and tires power their own pressure sensors as they rotate.

September 13, 2013