Materials

New catalyst helps turn carbon dioxide into fuel

Stanford engineers Aisulu Aitbekova and Matteo Cargnello say a new process shows promise in turning the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide back into usable fuels, and yields four times as much fuel as previous approaches.

What it’s like to be a chemist

Laura Dassama and her fellow Stanford chemists talk about their paths into the field, the joys of making new molecules and the way in which the “central science” pervades our lives.

Atomically thin heat shield protects electronics

Atomically thin materials developed by Stanford researchers could create heat shields for cell phones or laptops that would protect people and temperature-sensitive components and make future electronic gadgets even more compact.

Wireless sensors stick to skin and track health

Stanford engineers have developed experimental stickers that pick up physiological signals emanating from the skin, then wirelessly beam these health readings to a receiver clipped onto clothing. It’s all part of a system called BodyNet.

New process rinses heavy metals from toxic soils

Poisonous heavy metals contaminating thousands of sites nationwide threaten to enter the food chain, and there’s been no easy way to remove them. An experimental chemical bath and electrochemical filter could now extract heavy metals from the soil and leave fields safe.

Possible blood test for colon cancer

Up to half of people who should be screened for colorectal cancer do not get the routine procedure. A blood test to detect colorectal cancer being developed by Stanford doctors and materials scientists could help change that.

High-quality bespoke nanocrystals

Stanford researchers redefine what it means for low-cost semiconductors, called quantum dots, to be near-perfect and meet quality standards set by more expensive alternatives.