In case you missed it (ICYMI), here are some of the stories that made headlines in the world of cleanrooms and nanotechnology in the past week:
Researchers have been seeking a new, cheap, quick genome sequencing method for years. Now, scientists have used graphene nanoribbons to detect and characterize the passage of both double- and single-stranded DNA molecules (dsDNA and ssDNA, respectively) in a variety of configurations with a nanopore. This opens new possibilities for genomics based on nanopore membrane technology. The single-atom thickness of monolayer graphene enables the high-resolution scanning of molecules passing through the nanopores. Plus, as a conventional semiconductor material, graphene is electrically active, which allows for the electronic control and sensing of biomolecules.
Purdue University researchers have developed a new kind of imaging system that uncovers the chemical composition of living tissue for medical diagnostics and cellular studies. Why is this important? Regular imaging technologies (examples: magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography) don’t reveal the chemical composition of tissues. This new system helps medical professionals detect diseases earlier, and it also allows for the real-time observation of molecular dynamics in living cells.
Finally, graphene-based paper has become the basis for origami-inspired, instant self-folding walking devices. Function-designed graphene oxide was used to create nanoscale building blocks, which in turn developed an all-graphene self-folding paper that has a single-component gradient structure. A functional device composed of this graphene paper is able to form predesigned shapes, walk, and go around a corner. All of these processes are able to be remote-controlled by gentle light or heating. This technology could potentially be used for applications such as sensing, artificial muscles, and robotics.