Argonne National Laboratory

Science Highlights

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Optical interferometric picture of the actuated micromechanical bridges used to manipulate and control the flow of plasmons in the new plasmonic phase modulator. The device can introduce a maximum of 5 rad of phase modulation with low insertion and excess losses. (Click to enlarge.)
New nano-mechanical plasmonic phase modulator offers electronics potential

By using standard semiconductor manufacturing equipment, a team of scientists demonstrated a nano-mechanical plasmon phase modulator that can control and manipulate the flow of plasmons at the nanoscale without any degradation in optical performance.

April 3, 2015
The shape-shifting nanorods team: Zhang Jiang (APS), Yuelin Li (APS), Subramanian Sankaranarayanan (CNM), Stephen Gray (CNM) and Xiao-Min Lin (CNM). Photo by Mark Lopez/Argonne National Laboratory
Shape-shifting nanorods release heat differently

CNM and APS researchers reveal previously unobserved behaviors that show how details of the transfer of heat at the nanoscale cause nanoparticles to change shape in ensembles.

February 19, 2015
Nanoparticle membranes in action: (top) a film of gold nanoparticles on a porous substrate and the transport pathway for a charged molecule (blue sphere) moving through an uncovered pore; (bottom) each gold nanoparticle is coated with customized ligands to gate the entry of only certain charged species of interest.
Better Separations with Customized Nanoparticle Membranes

A versatile new approach controls membrane functionality by depositing custom-coated nanoparticles around the membrane’s pore entrances. This customization allows the membrane to gate the entry of only certain species of interest. This previously unexplored membrane tuning method is of great interest for myriad systems from fuel cells to desalination to biological and other applied technologies.

January 19, 2015
Silver particles improve performance of battery material

Argonne materials scientist Larry Curtiss is part of an Argonne team working on a new battery architecture that uses lithium-oxygen bonds as it stores and releases energy, and silver as the metal catalyst that makes this possible.

December 16, 2014
This picture combines a transmission electron microscope image of a nanodumbbell with a gold domain oriented in direction. The seed and gold domains in the dumbbell in the image on the right are identified by geometric phase analysis. Image credit: Soon Gu Kwon.
Atomic Mismatch Creates Nano-Dumbbells

An x-ray scattering study of the nucleation and growth of bimetallic dumbbell nanoparticles was done in real time with atomic resolution. Together with microscopy, results show that lattice engineering at the interface provides a new tool for designing monolayer-thin efficient and selective catalysts.

December 5, 2014
Visualizing the NanoBio Interface with Nanoscale Resolution

By combining magnetic nanoparticles with a common chemotherapy drug, a new way to deliver anti-cancer drugs directly into the nucleus of cancer cells has been created. The CNM/APS hard X-ray nanoprobe beamline visualized platinum distribution from the drug within the cells.

November 21, 2014
New Acoustic Sensor for Chemical and Biological Detection

An improvement to surface acoustic wave (SAW) sensor devices has significantly reduced energy losses by up to 50 percent. Zinc oxide filled microcavities were designed to trap energy near the SAW surface that otherwise would be lost to bulk waves.

November 21, 2014
A diagram of the imaging setup, featuring the STM "smart tip" and an image of Ni clusters (green) on the Cu surface (red). The smart tip consists of a sharp conducting tip (green), coaxially coated by an insulating layer (gray), a thin seed layer (blue), and a conducting outer shield (gold).
Combining Elemental Fingerprints with Atomic Level Sensitivity

By using synchrotron X-rays as a probe and a nanofabricated smart tip of a tunneling microscope as a detector, the chemical fingerprinting of individual nickel clusters on a Cu(111) surface was achieved at 2 nm lateral resolution, and at the ultimate single-atomic height sensitivity. The technique combines synchrotron X-rays (SX) and scanning tunneling microscopy (STM).

November 19, 2014
Ultrananocrystalline diamond thin films have shown a great deal of promise in the semiconductor and microelectromechanical systems industries. (Click image to enlarge).
Argonne researchers develop two new diamond inventions

Argonne researchers have continued their research into advanced ultrananocrystalline diamond technologies and have developed two new applications for this special material.

October 10, 2014
TEM image of bundled nanosized pores inside a porous colloidal hypersonic crystal
Controlling Acoustic Transport in Hypersonic Crystals

CNM users from Toyota Research Institute of North America, working with the Nanophotonics Group, have determined that bulk coherent acoustic vibrations are heavily damped by scattering from radially aligned nanosized pores within hypersonic crystals of closely packed colloidal silica.

September 19, 2014