Tiny Sensor Powered by Radio Waves

With smart technology on the rise, researchers are looking for ways to develop smaller sensors that can help building the landscape of the internet of things. However, this could potentially demand huge sums of power in an era where people are working hard to conserve energy. A research team from Eindhoven University of Technology may have found a solution to this problem with the development of their new extra-small, wireless sensors that are powered by radio waves that make up its wireless network.

With a router nearby, the tiny sensors can pull the necessary energy to give them functionality. The sensor is just 2 millimeters and can communicate temperatures.

This from Gizmodo:

Aboard the chip, a small antenna captures energy from the signals transmitted by the router. Once it’s charged, the sensor quickly switches on, measures the temperature, and then transmits a small signal for the router to detect. The frequency of the transmitted signal relates to the measured temperature.

Read the full article.

The researchers predict that the primary use for this sensor will be embedding the device within buildings to monitor conditions. Currently priced at 20 cents per sensor, researchers hope that with continued research, its potential could increase to detecting movement, light, and humidity.

The major issue right now lies in the fact that the sensor can only transmit its signal 2.5 centimeters. While the device is currently not practical, the team believes that its reach can grow to 16 feet with more research.

[Image: Eindhoven University of Technology]

Abstracts Due Friday!

SanDiego_2016_homeThe deadline for submitting abstracts to the 229th ECS Meeting in San Diego, CA is Friday (Dec. 11, 2015). Submit now!

Here’s just one of the symposia you’ll find:

D04: Plasma and Thermal Processes for Materials Modification, Synthesis and Processing

Symposium Focus: Modification, synthesis, and processing of micro- and nano-structured materials, nanowires, nanotubes, and 2-D materials using plasma or thermal activation approaches. Applications include microelectronics, photovoltaics, optoelectronics, thermoelectrics, sensors, QDOTs, MEMS, and 3-D packaging.

Symposium Invited Speakers:

  • David Graves (UC Berkeley), Plasma Therapy;
  • Peter Bruggeman (Minnesota), Plasma/Living Matter interactions;
  • Michael Keidar (George Washington), Plasma nanoscience;
  • Dave Thomas (SPTS/Orbotech), Bosch etching;
  • Peter Ventzek (TEL), Plasma Etch Challenges;
  • Cornelia Breitkopf (Dresden), Plasma Simulation for Biomedical Applications;
  • Thorsten Lill (LAM), Directional Atomic Layer Etching

Learn more.

Here’s another one on energy conversion and storage.

How Has ECS Open Access Made a Difference?

ECS Digital LibraryWe are collecting stories from you about how having our peer-reviewed content from the ECS Digital Library has made a difference in your work.

Did you find content in our digital library that you would not have otherwise had access to that shaped your thinking and your research?

In 2014 ECS Digital Library started offering a portion of our published articles as open access. It was the start of our bold commitment to what we are calling — Free the Science. Through this mission-driven initiative, we are striving to open access to the entire ECS Digital Library–making all content from ECS journals freely available to all readers, while remaining free to publish for authors.

We caught a glimpse of the Free the Science ultimate vision during Open Access Week in October 2015: We made 100% of the content in the ECS Digital Library completely free to access for seven straight days and saw a 51% increase in the Journal of the Electrochemical Society usage compared to the same week in 2014.

We want to tell your story. Or maybe you know someone who our open access research has helped. Please contact me at Rob.Gerth@electrochem.org.

Solar Geoengineering and Climate Change

The Earth is getting warmer and greenhouse gas emissions are on the rise. With carbon dioxide levels at their highest in 650,000 years, scientists across the global are grappling with the question of how to stop global warming.

For many, alternative energy sources are the answer. While the implementation of this technology is crucial for the development of a carbon-free society, flipping the grid is easier said than done. The U.S. alone is highly dependent on fossil fuels, which emit high level of greenhouse gases. Additionally, transitioning the grid to 100 percent renewables would not fully solve the issue. Emissions will still exist in the atmosphere, with warming happening right now.

“When people emerge from poverty and move toward prosperity, they consume more energy,” said Adam Heller in a recent plenary lecture.

The Need for a Solution

Currently, 13 percent of carbon dioxide emissions stem from two industries: steel and cement. According to Heller, these industry are directly correlated to global wealth—what he deems the driving force of acceleration in climate change. To put that in perspective, the solar energy technology that is currently in place in the U.S. saves only 0.3 percent through the use of solar energy, according to Heller. With carbon dioxide emissions constantly accelerating, increasing by 2 percent every year, scientists are looking for solutions to this pressing issue.

“This will lead to a catastrophe,” Heller said. “The question is, what do we do about this catastrophe?”

For Heller and other scientists, part of the answer lies in solar geoengineering (SGE).

“We need to learn something about geoengineering,” Heller said. “We need to learn something about reflecting light from the sun through aerosols in the atmosphere.”


Building a Biosensor from Bubblegum

What does Doublemint gum have to do with biomedical research? Apparently, a lot more than would be expected.

A combined research effort from the University of Manitoba and the Manitoba Children’s Hospital has recently created a stretchy, highly sensitive biosensor using chewed gum and carbon nanotubes.

After the gum in chewed for about 30 minutes, it is then cleaned with ethanol and laced with carbon nanotubes. The biosensor has the potential to monitor berating patterns and blood flow.

Even more impressive, the cost for the sensor come in under $3. Researchers believe the cheap, highly flexible biosensor could aid in a multitude of health care applications.

PS: Working in sensor science and technology? Make sure to check out our sensor symposia at the 229th ECS Meeting! Submit your abstract today!

Who’s Talking Energy Conversion & Storage?

E2S-speakersThere are just eight days left to submit your abstracts for the 229th ECS Meeting! Make sure to submit by December 11, 2015.

Submit today!

Topic Close-up #5
SYMPOSIUM I05: Heterogeneous Functional Materials for Energy Conversion and Storage.

FOCUSED ON the science that controls emergent properties in heterogeneous functional materials as a foundation for design of functional material devices with performance not bounded by constituent properties.

PROVIDING a unique venue for both contributed and invited speakers to present the latest advances in novel modeling approaches, advanced 3-D imaging and characterization techniques, novel material synthesis and manufacturing methods to create highly ordered material structure, and applications of heterogeneous functional materials in devices for energy conversion and storage. This symposium especially encourages and welcomes contributed presentations.


uhligThe Corrosion Division is currently accepting nominations for the following two awards:

Corrosion Division Morris Cohen Graduate Student Award: established in 1991 to recognize and reward outstanding graduate research in the field of corrosion science and/or engineering. The award consists of a framed scroll and $1,000 prize. The award, for outstanding Masters or PhD work, is open to graduate students who have successfully completed all the requirements for their degrees as testified to by the student’s advisor, within a period of two years prior to the nomination submission deadline. Read the rules and submit a nomination form today!

Herbert H. Uhlig Award: established in 1972 to recognize excellence in corrosion research and outstanding technical contributions to the field of corrosion science and technology. The Award consists of $1500 and a framed scroll. The recipient is eligible for travel reimbursement in order to attend the Society meeting at which the Award is presented. Read the rules and submit a nomination form today!

About H. H. Uhlig
Professor Herbert H. Uhlig was head of the Corrosion Laboratory, teacher, and graduate advisor at MIT for over thirty years. He authored hundreds of publications on the subjects of passivity, pitting, stress corrosion cracking, corrosion fatigue, and the oxidation of metals. Through the application of basic first principles to his research on corrosion phenomena, he is widely recognized as being one of the leaders responsible for establishing the field of corrosion science on a firm fundamental basis. Uhlig was an active ECS member and served as President from 1955-1956.

Application Deadline: December 15, 2015

Abstract Deadline Approaching Fast!

SanDiego_2016_homeDon’t miss your chance to submit your abstract to the upcoming ECS biannual meeting in San Diego. The deadline is December 11!

Submit your abstract!

The 229th ECS meeting, being held May 29 – June 3 at the Hilton Bayfront and the San Diego Convention Center, is already gearing up to be an important and energizing get-together. This location, right in the heart of downtown San Diego, is the perfect setting to really immerse yourself in all that San Diego has to offer from world class dining, élite shopping, and a plethora of outdoor activities.

Of course, first you’ll have to tear yourself away from any of the 50+ technical symposia we will be running, including:

  • Grand Challenges in Energy Conversion and Storage,
  • Sustainable Materials and Manufacturing,
  • The Brain and Electrochemistry,
  • More-than-Moore 3,
  • Medical and Point-of-Care Sensors,
  • Future and Present Advanced Lithium Batteries and Beyond – a Symposium in Honor of Prof. Bruno Scrosati.

…just to name a few

Make sure to join us and present your research alongside of the leading experts in the fields of electrochemistry and solid state science. Check the Call for Papers and see what we have in store for you!

There’s less than two weeks left to submit your abstract.

Submit today!

Solving Climate Change with Bubbles

In light of U.N. Climate Talks in Paris and the crippling air pollution levels in China, Bill Nye continuing the good fight against climate change with his latest pitch for a solution against the catastrophic force.

His possible solution? Bubbles.

Through a simple experiment, Nye explores the possibility of purposely inducing bubbles to potentially help satisfy water and sanitation demands as well as reflect light into space—helping control the global temperature.

In the full interview with Yahoo! News Live, Nye also discusses a carbon fee, the real threats of climate change, and “climate deniers.” Check out the full video.

PS: Check out what ECS scientists are doing to address climate change!

New Phase of Carbon Shows Unique Properties

q-carbonA new form of carbon that has unprecedented strength and magnetism properties is making its mark in the world of materials science.

Researchers from North Carolina State University have recently developed a new phase of carbon called Q-carbon—an extraordinarily strong material that differs from carbon’s other two solid forms.

The first solid phase of carbon is graphite. Graphite is composed by lining up carbon atoms to form thin sheets, which results in a thin and flaky material. The other phase of carbon, diamond, occurs when carbon atoms form a rigid crystal lattice.

Third Phase of Carbon

“We’ve now created a third solid phase of carbon,” says Jay Narayan, lead author of the research. “The only place it may be found in the natural world would be possibly in the core of some planets.”

Q-carbon differs from both existing phases of carbon, with unique characteristics that researchers did not even think were possible prior to its development, such as its magnetic and glowing qualities. To fully understand its novel qualities, it’s essential to understand how Q-carbon was developed.