Chemistry, concrete and ceramic cement
Two new ideas about materials old and new.
Whatever you’re building, strength tends to be a prerequisite, so anything that makes things stronger and more reliab...
The potential of pollen paper
Researchers create a material that responds to humidity.
Scientists in Singapore have created a paper-like material derived from pollen that bends and curls in response to ch...
Using perovskite to help shape light
It’s a cost-effective option in Faraday rotators.
Researchers in Australia say they have found a way to manipulate laser light at a fraction of the cost of current tec...
Watching magnets in 3D
A complex world of waves and tornadoes.
British and Swiss scientists have developed a 3D imaging technique that allows them to observe complex behaviours in ...
New interest in old helmet design
Protection from shock waves is increasingly important.
The helmet may be old, but the vision you are looking at is relatively new. Credit: Joost Op 't Eynde, Duke Univer...
Aspdin’s concrete success
It was the highlight of an otherwise shady life.
“Our lives are full of artificial materials – plastic bottles, steel structures and glass facades. But while these ma...
Atom-scale materials are the next tech frontier
Getting ready for when silicon nanomaterials run their course.
Every age in the history of human civilisation has a signature material, from the Stone Age, to the Bronze and Iron A...
Fine china from China
The science and secrets of porcelain were much in demand.
The science of porcelain would make a good plot for a spy novel – a story of ancient industrial espionage involving a...
Tiny bridges help particles stick together
For the strength and stability of an aggregate, size matters.
The structure and stability of soil changes as it gets wet, dry and wet again – something architects and engineers kn...
Roy Plunkett's accident
Recognising novelty led to the development of Teflon.
When New Scientist magazine profiled “eight great accidents in scientific discovery” in 2017 it included such unlikel...
When sensors get together
Matrix takes us further down the path towards electronic skin.
Advances in flexible sensors and organic electronics are moving us closer to the idea of creating electronic skin, bu...
Can your phone sweat to keep cool?
A new strategy for transient thermal management.
Chinese engineers are investigating whether our phones can regulate their temperature by sweating – sort of. Writing...