Science Highlights

These monthly highlights, selected by MagLab Director Greg Boebinger, represent the most promising and cutting-edge research underway in the lab’s seven user facilities.

22 August 2016

MagLab SciGirls Camp expands to coding

In July 2016, eight middle and high school girls attended the SciGirls Coding Camp, which introduced them to single-board computers called Raspberry Pi.

3 August 2016

Titanium-3-gold found to be the hardest known biocompatible compound

Scientists discover that a new titanium compound is four times harder — and can last much longer — than what is currently being used for medical implants.

18 July 2016

"Free" oxide ions detected in silicate glasses

Using an advanced technique, scientists discover that one of the most common substances in our everyday lives — glass — is more complex than we thought.

18 July 2016

Crystallization of spin superlattices using pressure and magnetic field

Discovery of a new kind of electron spin superstructure in crystals opens the tantalizing prospect of finding other emergent exotic phases.

27 June 2016

Upper critical field of iron-based superconductor discovered

Scientists discovered how strong of a magnetic field was necessary to suppress superconductivity in a thin film of iron-selenium.

16 June 2016

MagLab at USA Science and Engineering Expo

MagLab educators taught lessons in electricity and magnetism at the 4th USA Science and Engineering Festival.

25 May 2016

Potential qubits maintain quantum coherence outside a crystal

This approach to building “qubits” could be a promising tool for developing quantum computers.

25 May 2016

New state of matter discovered in single-layer graphene

Discovering previously unobserved quantum states nested inside the quantum Hall effect in a single-layer form of carbon known as graphene, researchers have found evidence of a new state of matter that challenges scientists' understanding of collective electron behavior.

13 April 2016

Learning how protective shells form around retroviruses

Scientists gain new insights into how protective shells form around retrovirus genomes, advancing the search for drugs that will combat them.

13 April 2016

Superconducting insert magnet generates new record field of 40.2 teslas

Using a novel method of winding the magnet coil that dispensed with the traditional insulation, the MagLab reached another world record and laid the foundation for more to come.

13 April 2016

Understanding the physics behind a promising kind of resistor

Scientists theorize, and demonstrate, that a tiny shock wave of oxygen is the key to how nanoscale transistors work.

21 March 2016

Electron pairs superconduct in NbSe2 layer at high fields

Niobium diselenide is found to retain its superconductivity even under very high magnetic fields.

21 March 2016

Removing "water-loving" molecules from petroleum

Scientists have developed a way to isolate emulsion-causing petroleum compounds. The technique may help lower energy costs for both oil companies and consumers.

16 February 2016

New properties revealed in atomically-thin semiconductors

Scientists begin to fill in the blanks on transition metal dichalcogenides.

16 February 2016

Determining the structure of “death acids” in plants

Scientists analyzing maize affected by southern leaf blight determine the molecular structures of so-called “death acids.”

29 January 2016

MagLab expertise puts neutron scattering in focus

Tapping into MagLab expertise on superconductors and cryogenics, a research team built a novel neutron scattering device that is more efficient and produces better data than previous techniques.

29 January 2016

Phase separation of very dilute concentrations of 3He in solid 4He

Working with a solid form of helium at ultra-low temperatures, scientists observed a quantum phase separation that may shed light on analogous processes in classical systems like metal alloys.

29 January 2016

New record magnetic anisotropy in a molecular nanomagnet

Scientists created a molecular nanomagnet based on a single nickel atom with record-high magnetic anisotropy — a quality that makes it a promising building block for applications like memory storage.

11 December 2015

Record current density in superconducting CORC® magnet cables at 20 teslas

A new type of superconducting cable was successfully tested at high field at the MagLab, opening the door for the next generation of accelerator magnets operating at 20 teslas (T) and above.

11 December 2015

Quench analysis of pancake-wound REBCO coils with low resistance between turns

New calculations that reveal the workings of a new type of high-field research magnet will aid in future magnet designs.