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Bioactive Plastics With Programmable Degradation And Microplastic Elimination

Although the plastic waste crisis has reached a breaking point, current recycling approaches are unable to remediate microplastic pollution. Biodegradable and renewable plastics have shown promise but impact neither microplastic elimination nor complete plastic recycling due to diffusion-limited enzymatic surface erosion and random chain scission. Here it is shown that nanoscopic dispersion of trace enzyme (e.g. lipase) in plastics (e.g. polycaprolactone [PCL]) leads to fully functional plastics with eco-friendly microplastic elimination and programmable degradation. Nanoscopic enzyme encapsulation leads to:continuous degradation to achieve 95% microplastic eliminationa single chain-based degradation mechanism with repolymerizable small molecule by-products via selective chain end scission rather than random chain scissionspatially- and temporally-programmable degradation of melt-processed host matrix due to the dependence of single chain degradation on local lamellae thickness regardless of bulk percent crystallinity formulation of conductive ink for 3-D printing with full recovery of the precious metal filler With recent developments in synthetic biology and genome information, nanoscopically embedding catalytically active enzymes in plastics may lead to an immediate, environmentally friendly and technologically viable solution toward microplastic elimination and material recycling.

New Spin Current-Based Memory Devices and Switches

Prof. Jing Shi and his colleagues from the University of California, Riverside have developed two new applications to utilize spin current in electronic devices. The first is a pure spin current switch that allows for the manipulation of pure spin current in electronic devices by allowing the user to switch between an “on” and “off” state. The device includes a first metal layer, a magnetic insulator layer, and a second metal layer. This technology controls the flow of information by switching the direction of magnetization of the middle layer. Since spin current does not require electricity, the spin current switch holds an innovative promise for the future of the way electronic devices channel current. The second is a non-volatile random access memory (RAM) device capable of using spin current to reduce electricity consumption. The technology can transmit information through electrical insulators, where the flow of information can be switched “off” by applying a magnetic field. The “on” and “off” states are two non-volatile memory states that can be stored as the magnetization direction of the magnetic insulator layer. This technology holds promise for a new generation of RAM technology that is not limited by memory bottleneck.  Fig. 1: A schematic illustration of a spin current valve. Top: The switch in the "on" position. Bottom: The switch in the "off" position.  

Scalable Manufacturing of Copper Nanocomposites with Tunable Properties

UCLA researchers in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering have developed a cost-effective method to produce copper-based nanocomposites with excellent mechanical, electrical and thermal properties.

Flexible Microfluidic Sensors for Curved Surfaces

UCLA researchers in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering have developed flexible tactile sensors for curved surfaces that are robust against fatigue and suitable for robotic applications.

Low Energy and Noise Sub-Sampling Phase-Locked Loop

Phase locked loops are widely employed in radio, telecommunications, computers and other electronic applications. They can be used to demodulate a signal, recover a signal from a noisy communication channel, generate a stable frequency at multiples of an input frequency, or distribute precisely timed clock pulses in digital logic circuits such as microprocessors. Researchers at the University of California, Davis have invented a novel, sub-sampling phase-locked, loop (SSPLL) that uses a sub-sampling lock detector (SSLD) to monitor the harmonic selected by the SSPLL. This technology requires lower energy consumption and reduces signal noise.

Stream-Based Memory Access Specialization For General Purpose Processors

Researchers led by Zhengrong Wang and Tony Nowatzki from the Computer Science Department at UCLA have created a way to improve computer processing power, speed, and efficiency by optimizing how processors access memory.

Diamond On Nanopatterned Substrates

UCLA researchers in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering have developed a nanofabrication method for improving the thermal properties of polycrystalline diamond films grown by chemical vapor deposition.

Techniques for Creation and Insertion of Test Points for Malicious Circuitry Detection

Researchers led by Dr. Potkonjak from the UCLA Department of Computer Science have developed a technique to detect hardware Trojans in integrated circuits.

Grating-Based Quantum-Cascade Vertical External Cavity Lasers In The Terahertz And Mid-Infrared

UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical Engineering have developed grating-based quantum-cascade vertical external lasers that operate in the terahertz and mid-infrared range.

Distributed Feedback Laser with Transparent Conducting Oxide Grating

Improved laser diodes which use distributed feedback (DFB) or distributed Bragg reflector (DBR) gratings to enable single wavelength operation in Group III-N lasers operating at visible or ultraviolet wavelengths.

Magnetoelectric Device with Two Dielectric Barriers

UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering have developed a magnetoelectric memory device that uses two dielectric barriers for improved voltage-controlled magnetic anisotropy (VCMA) and tunnel magnetoresistance (TMR) properties.

An Improved On-Chip Crosstalk Noise Model

Researchers led by Jason Cong from the Department of Computer Science at UCLA have developed an improved on-chip crosstalk noise model to optimize integrated circuit design.

Selective Deposition Of Diamond In Thermal Vias

UCLA researchers in the Department of Materials Science & Engineering have developed a new method of diamond deposition in integrated circuit vias for thermal dissipation.

Wafer Bonding for Embedding Active Regions with Relaxed Nanofeatures

An alternative method, using wafer bonding, to connect relaxed nanostructures in the active region with separately grown material.

CMOS-Compatible Doped-Multilayer-Graphene (DMG) Interconnects

A method to implement high-conductivity nanometer-scale doped-multilayer-graphene (DMG) interconnects that are compatible with high-volume manufacturing of integrated circuits (ICs).

A Nonvolatile Magnetoelectric Random Access Memory Circuit

UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical Engineering have developed a nonvolatile random-access memory circuit (MeRAM) that is very dense, fast, and consumes extremely low power.

Voltage-Controlled Magnetic Memory Element With Canted Magnetization

UCLA researchers in the Department of Electrical Engineering have developed a method for voltage-controlled switching of the magnetization direction in MeRAM circuits.

Wideband Distributed Mixers

This technology is a simple, novel ultra wideband distributed complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor mixer, which incorporates on-chip distributed transmission line. A wideband distributed mixer is capable of operation over a wide range of frequencies, and can carry large amounts data up to 250 feet, which makes it attractive for military and law-enforcement use.

Simple and Effective Strategy for Optical Band Gap Control in Conjugated Oligomers and Polymers

Researchers have demonstrated the ability to modulate the electronic properties of a conjugated molecule via interaction with Lewis acids that bind a basic site in the molecule.

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