368 Works

Ultralow thermal conductivity in aikinite, CuPbBiS3

There is a need for thermoelectric materials that do not contain tellurium, a rare element in the Earth's crust, to enable widespread implementation of thermoelectric energy recovery. High-throughput calculations led us to identify the mineral aikinite, CuPbBiS3, as a potential thermoelectric material. Our calculated vibrational density-of-states suggests that copper rattling and anharmonicity, arising from the presence of a lone pair on the lead cation, should result in low thermal conductivity. Experimentally, we have found that...

How is the nanoscale structure of Amorphous Solid Water (ASW) impacted by the presence of adsorbates?

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This experiment will determine how the structure and porosity of Amorphous Solid Water (ASW) changes when the ice is contaminated by adsorbate molecules. ASW is a porous material formed by vapour-depositing water onto a cold plate, an analogue of the ice found in star- and planet-forming regions of our galaxy. Our previous work has shown that the ASW has very small-scale porosity, but NIMROD data of the pure water ice alone are unable to elucidate...

Long range structure in water-in-salt electrolytes

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Water-in-salt electrolytes (WiSEs) are a new class of highly concentrated electrolyte. They have recently come to the forefront of battery research owing to their desirable properties: they can be safer, less expensive, and more environmentally friendly than traditional electrolytes currently used in state-of-the-art batteries. Recently we have investigated surface forces present in a water-in-salt electrolyte at an interface, and found evidence of periodic structure with a characteristic length scale of 12 - 14 Angstroms, and...

Deconvolving solvent-solvent and drug-solvent diffusion in supramolecular gels

We investigate drug diffusion in supramolecular gels on the molecular level to tailor bespoke drug delivery platforms. We propose to use polarised neutrons on LET to measure the quasi-elastic scattering associated with the diffusive motions of solvent and drug molecules in a prototypical gel. By selective deuteration, individual solvent fractions of the mixed solvent as well as the drug molecule can be distinguished. The data will be analysed (1) by standard models for diffusion in...

Solution structure and viscoelasticity of cellulose ethers in the presence of chaotropic nano-ions

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Cellulose ethers, such as hydroxypropyl cellulose (HPC) are widely-used commcercial viscosifying agents due to their high molecular stiffness, in comparison to classical synthetic polymers like PS , and their tendency to self-aggregate in solution. In this research project we study the effects of chaotropic (water structure-breaking) and hydrophobic nanometric ions on the solution structure and rheology of HPC. We observed that the chaotropic nano-ion induced stronger effects on HPC rheology - a drastic viscosity increase...

The Interplay of apoptosis regulating Bcl-2 proteins at mitochondrial membranes

The powerhouse of our cells are mitochondria who are also crucially involved in programmed cell death (apoptosis). The main regulator is the Bcl-2 protein family who controls the permeability of the mitochondrias' outer membranes. While apoptotic (killing) Bax perforates those membranes and killing cells, the anti-apoptotic (protecting) Bcl-2 membrane protein inhibits Bax activity. Many treatment-resistant tumours are enriched in this protecting Bcl-2 protein. However, the molecular basis of apoptotic regulation by those opposing Bcl-2 members...

Electrochemical Redox Couples: A Modulation excitation study

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Knowing the structure and properties of materials including liquids are essential to understand their impact on many aspects of our life and environment. Neutron scattering techniques provide information ranging from magnetism, superconductivity to physical and chemical properties. In a typical experiment, neutrons interact exclusively with nucleus of an atom (which scatter neutrons) and hence the scattering power of an atom is not related to an atomic number, unlike other techniques such as X-rays. This has...

Interaction of model phospholipid bilayer membranes with Extracellular vesicles

Extracellular Vesicles (EVs)-mediated intercellular communication is recently receiving a rising attention. Owing to their content, EVs can target cargoes to promote beneficial or pathological conditions. However, understanding the mechanisms by which EVs interact with target cells is still a challenge. We address this by a multi-technique approach, using model membranes of different compositions. We isolated EVs from N2a cells in normal conditions and treated with the oligosaccharide OligoGM1, which is known for its neurotrophic/protective functions...

The magnetic ground state of Mn1/3NbS2

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Non-centrosymmetric systems lack a centre of inversion, which can lead to interesting magnetic phenomena. Cr1/3NbS2, a chiral helimagnet from the intercalated transition metal dichalcogenide family, has been shown to host a chiral soliton lattice, i.e., 360 degree domain walls separated by regions of forced ferromagnetism, under the application of an external field. Its sister compound, Mn1/3NbS2, has been suggested to be a chiral helimagnet, but this has yet to be unambiguously confirmed with neutron measurements....

Finite size effects on Weyl semimetal NdSiAl

In recent years exotic relativistic quasiparticles have been found to exist in the band structure of different materials, like Dirac fermions in graphene, or topological insulating states in topological insulators. Recently it was shown for first time that one of such band configurations to have an effect on a collective property like the magnetism. In NdAlSi, it was reported that the existence of Weyl nodes was in the root of a magnetic helical ordering. The...

Texture effects from rolling deformation in sheet steels: DX56 50% perpendicular strain

Texture effects from rolling deformation in sheet steels: DX56 50% perpendicular strain

Unravelling structure-property relationship of oil/water/surfactant system with temperature and under shear

Annually, over 100 billion litres of wastewater contaminated with crude oil droplets are generated worldwide. Depending on the wastewater source, such as marine oil spills and steam-based oil extraction processes, they require remediation. Current technologies are ineffective for removing oil droplets. To address this gap, we developed a sponge-based adsorption technology to remove crude oil droplets from wastewater. The nanocomposite sponges can remove the oil droplets from wastewater with over 99% removal efficacy. Knowledge of...

Polarized neutron reflectivity of all-van der Waals Dirac semimetal/2D ferromagnet heterostructures

The topological hall effect (THE) has been proposed as an indicator of topologically nontrivial magnetic structures such as skyrmions, which have incredible technological potential. However, the THE may also be generated by nonuniform magnetism, such as a difference in preferred spin direction at the surface and bulk of a material. These effects are particularly pronounced in ultrathin films where the surface and bulk regions have comparable contributions to the electrical properties. The 2D van der...

Searching for topological spin textures in a noncentrosymmetric antiferromagnet

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The search for skyrmion-like topological spin textures (TST) in rare-earth based compounds has recently attracted much interest. We have grown both single crystal and polycrystalline samples of EuPtAs, which is an antiferromagnet crystallizing in a tetragonal polar structure. We have characterized the physical properties, and constructed the field-temperature phase diagrams, which show multiple field-induced phases. To solve the magnetic structures, and to search for potential TST in EuPtAs, we propose to measure powder neutron diffraction...

Measurements of single-event burn-out of HV power devices for different technology nodes

High-voltage power semiconductor devices, such as IGBTs, diodes and MOSFETs are susceptible to destructive failure due to terrestrial cosmic radiation (CR). As a consequence, device development has to ensure adequate radiation hardness for every device technology. In order to reduce testing times accelerated irradiation tests at facilities with a nucleon energy spectrum close to the natural terrestrial CR are essential. Infineon has organized irradiation test campaigns on a regular basis. A detailed description of power...

Analysing the Impact of Atmospheric Neutrons on Zynq MPSoC Accelerated Applications

System-on-Chip FPGAs (SoC-FPGAs) are increasingly used in several areas, such as datacenters and edge applications, to improve energy efficiency and computation latency. However, modern SoC-FPGAs are susceptible to Single Event Upsets (SEUs) that can corrupt the device’s configuration and user memories, leading to application failures. In May 2021, the University of Piraeus, the University of Manchester, and scientists from the RAL ISIS facility performed neutron radiation experiments to characterize a Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC and evaluate...

Investigation of field-induced magnetic ordering in a new three-dimensional spin liquid candidate

Quantum spin liquid (QSL) is a highly entangled magnetic ground state in which the spins fluctuate continuously even at 0 K. These fluctuations are associated with the fractional magnetic excitations known as spinons which occur in the absence of any kind of static magnetic ordering. Hence, many highly frustrated magnetic motifs have been sought in the search of QSL state with many candidates occurring in two-dimensional lattices including the kagome in Herbertsmithite (ZnCu3(OH)6Cl2) and Kitaev...

Self-assembly of the beta blocker, acebutolol hydrochloride

Some drug molecules are surface active and, as such, self-assemble into micellar structures when present above a concentration known as their critical micelle concentration (cmc), although there is evidence of pre-micellar aggregation with some drugs. What is not currently understood is whether this “surfactant-like” behaviour is important for the drug's therapeutic activity. As part of a larger study aimed at gaining insight into the structure-function relationship between a drug’s surface active nature and its therapeutic...

Probing the change in the structure of an ionic liquid upon a liquid-liquid transition

Crystalline solids are characterised by high ordering at a microscopic level, forming a crystal lattice. It is common for a crystalline material to occur at different crystalline forms, with different lattices (polymorphism). In liquids, molecules are disordered, albeit strongly interacting, and are able to move freely with respect to one another. Although some elements and metal oxides have more than one liquid structure, displaying high-temperature liquid-liquid transitions (LLTs), only a handful of room-temperature liquids display...

Characterisation of adsorbed hydrogen on a novel Co/C catalyst

Evonik Industries have recently developed a novel carbon supported cobalt catalyst. The catalyst is active for a variety of selective hydrogenation reactions and the conversion of syngas (CO+H2) into light olefins and alcohols under mild conditions. Our previous INS studies of the interaction of hydrogen with the catalyst observed an intense peak at 46 cm−1, which we assigned as the J = 0 → 1 rotational transition of adsorbed H2. For the transition to fall...

Dynamic imaging of twin formation in NiMnGa based magnetic shapememory alloys under cyclic magnetic field.

Magnetic shape memory alloys (MSMA) are a unique class of material which produce huge elongation (up to 6%) upon the application of a magnetic field. This combined with their fast response makes them ideal for actuator applications. They achieve these unique properties through a deformation mechanism called twinning. Twinning is an important phenomenon which is widespread in metals and alloys. Because of the high speed of twinning these are often studied after the phenomenon has...

Probing the efficacy of Li-ion and Na-ion storage in hard carbon electrodes via total neutron scattering at different states of discharge

Sodium-ion battery technology is an emerging topic of interest for energy storage applications due to its lower cost and safer nature compared to lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. Amorphous hard carbon (HC) materials, which were employed during the commercialization of Li-ion batteries by Sony have been suggested as a leading candidate for the Na-ion battery anode. In this project, we will continue to study HC electrodes post cycling, which according to our recent review has not to...

Neutron Diffraction Studies of Metal-Organic Frameworks for Ammonia Adsorption

Porous metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) have gained considerable attention due to their potential in many applications, including gas separation and storage. There is particular interest on ammonia adsorption owing to the high volumetric and gravimetric hydrogen energy density of ammonia. We seek to develop MOF materials with exceptional, reversible ammonia capacity and request 4 days on WISH to study the preferred binding sites and orientation of adsorbed guest ND3 molecules. This proposed study will investigate the...

Using neutron reflectometry to understand enhanced dynamic linewidth in a magnetic trilayer device

We have studied the magnetic damping of CoFe/Ag/CoFe multilayer films using Ferromagnetic Resonance (FMR) spectroscopy. There is an anomalous linewidth enhancement, which oscillates with a period of around 1 nm as the Ag thickness is increased. One interpretation is related to the interlayer coupling which may be ferromagnetic or antiferromagnetic due to the well-known Ruderman-Kittel-Kasuya-Yosida (RKKY) mechanism. Theoretical studies predict such a dynamic exchange coupling across a non-magnetic spacer to affect the resonance linewidth; it...

Structure of water-based anti-corrosion coating studied with spin-echo small angle neutron scattering

Water-based coatings are becoming more popular due to their absence of volatile organic compounds. However, due to the migration of surfactants during the drying process, these coatings are thought to have percolation networks and voids. Spin echo small angle neutron scattering will be used to analyse the void network in water-based corrosion resistant coatings. SESANS has a unique ability to measure the density of a sample with a well-defined thickness. This density can be difficult...

Registration Year

  • 2022

Resource Types

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  • University of Warwick
  • University of Warwick - Warwick Business School
  • Imperial College London
  • Chatham House