Targeting weaknesses in quick clays with X-ray data

Recent landslides in Scandinavia linked to quick clays in the underlying soil have caused major damage to societal infrastructure and even loss of life. In urban areas in particular, quick clays can pose a significant hazard when disturbed. Research on the clay material structure holds promise to understand why quick clay soils can collapse without warning, and in connection, provide valuable insight for improved planning of buildings, roads, and bridges as well as public safety measures. New techniques for the study of quick clays include small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) available at MAX IV’s CoSAXS beamline, and full-field tomographic imaging and small- and wide-angle X-ray scattering (SWAXS) at ForMAX beamline.

Honeycomb silicon carbide: a research surprise

While physicists and materials scientists have been trying to produce large-area, two-dimensional, high-quality silicon carbide (SiC) for some time with little to no success, a recent study at Bloch beamline made an unexpected breakthrough.

Student engagement at MAX IV with MATRAC School

Forty-five university students recently got an exciting opportunity to visit MAX IV and PETRA III, attend lectures, and explore beamline technologies hands-on through the MATRAC I School. The educational programme, held in March this year, provides knowledge on the application of neutron and X-ray radiation in engineering materials science.

Amorphous atomic structure of tungsten oxide detected at DanMAX

The relationship between atomic structure and size is crucial knowledge in the effort to improve nanomaterials properties. Amorphous atomic structure was revealed in research done at DanMAX beamline of otherwise crystalline tungsten oxide nanoparticles due to the change of the nanoparticles size. This understanding is crucial for developing materials for, among others, catalysis, batteries, solar cells, memory storage, medicine, etc.

Spotlight on student science

The winner of the Student Science Award was announced at the 34th MAX IV User Meeting held in early October. User Meeting organizers and a team of three external adjudicators awarded the student submission based upon the criteria: research quality and potential impact. This year’s Student Award recipient is Harald Wallander for his research on characterizing ultra-thin materials during catalytic action.

Designing materials for a circular economy

According to the European Union’s Circular Economy Action Plan, industry can determine up to 80 % of a product’s subsequent environmental impact at the design phase. However, the linear manufacturing pattern offers few incentives to make products more sustainable. The research infrastructure project ReMade@ARI, which deals with innovative materials for key components in various areas such as electronics, packaging or textiles, aims to change this: The goal is to develop new materials with high recyclability and at the same time competitive functionalities. To this end, the institutions involved want to harness the potential of more than 50 analytical research infrastructures throughout Europe. MAX IV is a partner of this consortium.

A fuel conversion process akin to photosynthesis

Researchers at Linköping University in Sweden are developing a promising new method to selectively convert carbon dioxide and water to various types of fuel. Driving this reaction is solar energy. The recent study, published in ACS Nano, combines the material graphene and the semiconductor cubic silicon carbide in a process which essentially mimics photosynthesis in plants.