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MATERIALS, CHEMICALS & COATINGS NEWS
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Biomimetic Photodetector Distinguishes Color
HOUSTON, Aug. 26, 2014 — A new photodetector mimics living organisms’ ability to sense colors, enhancing color filtering and selectivity. The biomimetic color photodetector, developed at Rice University’s Laboratory for Nanophotonics (LANP), uses an aluminum grating and is CMOS compatible. The new device responds directly to red, green and blue light, similar to the human eye. “Today’s color filtering mechanisms often involve materials that are not CMOS compatible, but this new...

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Forecast: Worldwide Solar Capacity to Reach 66 GW by 2019
BOSTON, Aug. 26, 2014 — The global solar power industry will grow to a capacity of 65.6 gigawatt-peak (GWp) by 2019, with China at the forefront, the market analysis firm Lux Research predicts. Worldwide solar power capacity stood at a 37.5 GWp in 2013, meaning...
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Ground-Based Optics to Track Space Debris
CANBERRA, Australia, Aug. 26, 2014 — A new facility will use electro-optics and radar to provide an enhanced view of debris orbiting the Earth. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, in collaboration with Electro Optic Systems pty Ltd., is developing the new tracking site in Western...

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Hydrogen Produced Using Photosynthetic Blueprint
CANBERRA, Australia, Aug. 26, 2014 — Researchers have artificially replicated steps of photosynthesis to produce hydrogen as a zero-carbon replacement for petroleum products. A team from Australian National University modified the naturally occurring protein ferritin to...
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Synopsys Names Optical Design Contest Winners
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Aug. 26, 2014 — Xinda Hu of the University of Arizona, and University of Rochester students Anthony Vella, Aaron Bauer and Nicolas Brown are the winners of Synopsis Inc.’s Robert S. Hilbert Memorial Optical Design Competition. Hu designed a...

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Inrad Receives Order for Tank Optics
NORTHVALE, N.J., Aug. 25, 2014 — Inrad Optics has received a $585,553 order for metal optical mirrors from the U.S. Army. Inrad will provide single-axis mirrors for electro-optic fire-control systems that give M1A1 tanks their ability to shoot on the move. The...
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Optogenetics Heightens Whisker Sensitivity in Mice
PROVIDENCE, R.I., Aug. 25, 2014 — Researchers have heightened the sensitivity of mouse whiskers by using optogenetics to create gamma waves in the brain. A team from Brown University used pulses of blue light to manipulate inhibitory interneurons in the primary sensory...

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Quantum Cascade Laser Tests Blood Sugar
PRINCETON, N.J., Aug. 25, 2014 — A new laser system could eliminate the need for conventional finger-prick tests for diabetics. A team from Princeton University has developed the new technique, which measures blood sugar by directing an IR quantum cascade laser at a...
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'Water Window' Poses Imaging Prospect
SALAMANCA, Spain, Aug. 22, 2014 — The “water window” of biological tissue can be exploited to achieve high-contrast microscope images, as well as precision spectroscopy, according to a new theoretical study. Researchers from the Center for Pulsed Lasers said...

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Fluorescence Lifetime Measurement Enhances Recycling
MUNICH, Aug. 22, 2014 — Sorting plastics using fluorescence lifetime measurement could simplify and speed up the recycling process. Developed by a team from Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, the technique takes advantage of the intrinsic fluorescence...
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Semi-Artificial Photovoltaics Surpassing Photosynthesis
BOCHUM, Germany, Aug. 22, 2014 — Semi-artificial leaves could function as photovoltaic systems, and with unprecedented performance. In leaves, the membrane protein complex photosystem I (PS I) absorbs light, and its energy is utilized for converting carbon dioxide into...

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Inrad Optics Posts Loss After Facilities Consolidation
NORTHVALE, N.J., Aug. 21, 2014 — Inrad Optics Inc. reported a net loss of $1.0 million in the second quarter of 2014, compared to a net loss of $648,000 in the second quarter of 2013. Revenue for the second quarter was $2.2 million, down 17.3 percent from $2.7 million in...
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Raman Scattering Measures Single-Molecule Vibrations
IRVINE, Calif., Aug. 21, 2014 — Measurement of the vibrations, or “breathing,” of single molecules is now possible using Raman spectroscopy techniques. A team from the University of California, Irvine, viewed a bipyridylethylene (BPE) molecule vibrating via...

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Researchers Propose Lossless Nano-Optical Cables
EDMONTON, Alberta, Canada, Aug. 21, 2014 — New research proposes lossless nano-optical fibers small enough to replace copper wiring in computer chips. “We’re already transmitting data from continent to continent using fiber optics, but the killer application is using...
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Imaging Shows Bubbles Could Make Energy-Efficient Nanoparticles
PRINCETON, N.J., Aug. 20, 2014 — High-speed cameras and UV-sensitive materials are helping advance understanding of bubbles — which could mean big things for nanoparticles. In fact, a system in which bubbles mix liquids is an energy-efficient route toward producing...

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Laser Tweezers Used to Study Malaria
CAMBRIDGE, England, Aug. 20, 2014 — Optical tweezers are helping in the race to find new medicines or vaccines to wipe out malaria. A team from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and the University of Cambridge is studying how Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites interact...
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Kansas, Nebraska Researchers to Probe Ultrafast Laser Dynamics
MANHATTAN, Kan., Aug. 19, 2014 — A three-year, $6 million grant will support a research project on how ultrafast lasers influence matter. Funded by the National Science Foundation's Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, the project involves 30 physicists,...

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Laser Cooling Enhances Atomic-Force Microscopy
CANBERRA, Australia, Aug. 19, 2014 — Cooling nanowire probes with lasers could lead to significant improvements in the sensitivity and resolution of atomic-force microscopes. The technique, developed by a team from Australian National University, uses lasers to achieve a...
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Meadowlark Acquires Boulder Nonlinear Systems’ Commercial Unit
FREDERICK, Colo., Aug. 19, 2014 — Meadowlark Optics Inc. recently acquired the Commercial Products Group of Boulder Nonlinear Systems. Acquired product lines include spatial light modulators (SLMs), optical shutters, polarization rotators, variable waveplates and the CUBE...

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Oclaro Ends FY14 in Black After Business Unit Sales
SAN JOSE, Calif., Aug. 19, 2014 — After selling business segments for a total of about $120 million, optical communications firm Oclaro Inc. ended its fiscal year June 28 with earnings of $17.8 million, an improvement over its fiscal 2013 net loss of $122.7 million. The...
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ON Semiconductor Expands Imaging Business with Aptina Purchase
PHOENIX, Aug. 19, 2014 — ON Semiconductor has acquired Aptina Imaging Corp. of San Jose, Calif., for approximately $400 million in cash. Aptina manufactures CMOS imaging systems for consumer electronics devices, as well as the automotive, surveillance, video...

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Photronic Earnings Lower in Third Quarter
BROOKFIELD, Conn., Aug. 19, 2014 — Photomask firm Photronics Inc. reported earnings of $4.2 million in the third quarter of its fiscal year, which ended Aug. 3. The result represented a 28 percent decline from earnings of $5.9 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2013. ...
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Spectroscopy Tests for Best Organic Photovoltaics
TSUKUBA, Japan, Aug. 19, 2014 — Spectroscopy may provide a way to identify materials for organic photovoltaics based on their charge formation efficiency. In a recent study of organic solar cells, a team at the University of Tsukuba and the National Institute for...

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FTIR Microscopy Probes Interstellar Dust
BERKELEY, Calif., Aug. 18, 2014 — Microscopic analysis of interstellar dust is giving scientists an in-depth look at the origins of our solar system. A team from the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory is using a Fourier transform infrared...
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Optogenetics Controls Brain 'Switchboard' in Mice
NEW YORK, Aug. 18, 2014 — Optogenetic techniques have been used to alter the attention spans of mice, helping to shed light on how the brain mediates internal thoughts and external distractions. A team from New York University’s Langone Medical Center focused...






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