Materials science is an interdisciplinary field applying the properties of matter to various areas of science and engineering. This scientific field investigates the relationship between the structure of materials at atomic or molecular scales and their macroscopic properties. It incorporates elements of applied physics and chemistry. With significant media attention focused on nanoscience and nanotechnology in recent years, materials science has been propelled to the forefront at many universities. It is also an important part of forensic engineering and failure analysis. Materials science also deals with fundamental properties and characteristics of materials. The material of choice of a given era is often a defining point. Phrases such as Stone Age, Bronze Age, and Steel Age are good examples. Originally deriving from the manufacture of ceramics and its putative derivative metallurgy, materials science is one of the oldest forms of engineering and applied science. Modern materials science evolved directly from metallurgy, which itself evolved from mining and (likely) ceramics and the use of fire. A major breakthrough in the understanding of materials occurred in the late 19th
New research could lead to more efficient electrical energy storage
Lawrence Livermore researchers have identified electrical charge-induced changes in the structure and bonding of graphitic carbon electrodes that may one day affect the way energy is stored.
Scientists create cheaper magnetic material for cars, wind turbines
Karl A. Gschneidner and fellow scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory have created a new magnetic alloy that is an alternative to traditional rare-earth permanent magnets.
Dual-purpose film for energy storage, hydrogen catalysis: Chemists gain edge in next-gen energy
Rice University scientists who want to gain an edge in energy production and storage report they have found it in molybdenum disulfide.
Lab team develops hyper-stretchable elastic-composite energy harvester
A research team led by Professor Keon Jae Lee of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has developed a hyper-stretchable elastic-composite energy ...
How to make a "perfect" solar absorber
The key to creating a material that would be ideal for converting solar energy to heat is tuning the material's spectrum of absorption just right: It should absorb virtually all wavelengths of light that reach Earth's surface ...
One nanoparticle, six types of medical imaging
It's technology so advanced that the machine capable of using it doesn't yet exist.
Research team develops 'smart' window
Commonplace as they are, windows are an important piece of technology. Beyond architectural aesthetics, a building's ecological footprint depends heavily on how its internal light and heat are managed. With this in mind, ...
'Squid skin' metamaterials project yields vivid color display
The quest to create artificial "squid skin"—camouflaging metamaterials that can "see" colors and automatically blend into the background—is one step closer to reality, thanks to a breakthrough color-display technology ...
Scientists uncover clues to role of magnetism in iron-based superconductors
New measurements of atomic-scale magnetic behavior in iron-based superconductors by researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Vanderbilt University are challenging conventional wisdom about ...
Moving origami techniques forward for self-folding 3-D structures
Though the past 15 years have seen an exciting run of creative scientific advances in fabricating three-dimensional (3D) structures by self-folding of 2D sheets, the complexity of structures achieved to date falls far short ...