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New SMILES light up the room


A stack of 3D printed gyroids made from from the fluorescent SMILES materials. Photo: Amar Flood.
A stack of 3D printed gyroids made from from the fluorescent SMILES materials. Photo: Amar Flood.

By formulating positively charged fluorescent dyes into a new class of materials called small-molecule ionic isolation lattices (SMILES), researchers have shown that a dye's brilliant glow can be seamlessly transferred to a solid, crystalline state. This advance, reported in a paper in Chem, overcomes a long-standing barrier to developing fluorescent solids, resulting in the brightest known materials in existence.

"These materials have potential applications in any technology that needs bright fluorescence or calls for designing optical properties, including solar energy harvesting, bioimaging and lasers," says Amar Flood, a chemist at Indiana University and co-senior author of the paper, along with Bo Laursen of the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

"Beyond these, there are interesting applications that include upconverting light to capture more of the solar spectrum in solar cells, light-switchable materials used for information storage and photochromic glass, and circularly polarized luminescence that may be used in 3D display technology," Flood adds.

While there are currently more than 100,000 different fluorescent dyes available, almost none of these can be mixed and matched in predictable ways to create solid optical materials. Dyes tend to undergo ‘quenching’ when they enter a solid state due to how they behave when packed close together, decreasing the intensity of their fluorescence to produce a more subdued glow.

"The problem of quenching and inter-dye coupling emerges when the dyes stand shoulder-to-shoulder inside solids," explains Flood. "They cannot help but 'touch' each other. Like young children sitting at story time, they interfere with each other and stop behaving as individuals."

To overcome this problem, Flood and his colleagues mixed a colored dye with a colorless solution of cyanostar, a star-shaped macrocycle molecule that prevents the fluorescent molecules from interacting as the mixture solidifies, keeping their optical properties intact. As the mixture became a solid, SMILES formed, which the researchers then grew into crystals, precipitated into dry powders, and finally spun into a thin film or incorporated directly into polymers. Since the cyanostar macrocycles form building blocks that generate a lattice-like checkerboard, when the researchers plugged a dye into the lattice it would take on the dye’s color and appearance.

While previous research had already developed an approach to spacing the dyes apart using macrocycle molecules, it relied on colored macrocycles to do the job. Flood and colleagues found that colorless macrocycles were key.

"Some people think that colorless macrocycles are unattractive, but they allowed the isolation lattice to fully express the bright fluorescence of the dyes unencumbered by the colors of the macrocycles," says Flood.

Next, the researchers plan to explore the properties of fluorescent materials formed using this novel technique, with the aim of working with dye makers in the future to realize the materials' full potential in a variety of different applications.

"These materials are totally new, so we do not know which of their innate properties are actually going to offer superior functionality," says Flood. "We also do not know the materials' limits. So, we will develop a fundamental understanding of how they work, providing a robust set of design rules for making new properties. This is critical for putting these materials into the hands of others – we want to pursue crowd sourcing and to work with others in this effort."

This story is adapted from material from Cell Press, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier. Link to original source.

Republished by Plato

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A stack of 3D printed gyroids made from from the fluorescent SMILES materials. Photo: Amar Flood.
A stack of 3D printed gyroids made from from the fluorescent SMILES materials. Photo: Amar Flood.

By formulating positively charged fluorescent dyes into a new class of materials called small-molecule ionic isolation lattices (SMILES), researchers have shown that a dye’s brilliant glow can be seamlessly transferred to a solid, crystalline state. This advance, reported in a paper in Chem, overcomes a long-standing barrier to developing fluorescent solids, resulting in the brightest known materials in existence.

“These materials have potential applications in any technology that needs bright fluorescence or calls for designing optical properties, including solar energy harvesting, bioimaging and lasers,” says Amar Flood, a chemist at Indiana University and co-senior author of the paper, along with Bo Laursen of the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

“Beyond these, there are interesting applications that include upconverting light to capture more of the solar spectrum in solar cells, light-switchable materials used for information storage and photochromic glass, and circularly polarized luminescence that may be used in 3D display technology,” Flood adds.

While there are currently more than 100,000 different fluorescent dyes available, almost none of these can be mixed and matched in predictable ways to create solid optical materials. Dyes tend to undergo ‘quenching’ when they enter a solid state due to how they behave when packed close together, decreasing the intensity of their fluorescence to produce a more subdued glow.

“The problem of quenching and inter-dye coupling emerges when the dyes stand shoulder-to-shoulder inside solids,” explains Flood. “They cannot help but ‘touch’ each other. Like young children sitting at story time, they interfere with each other and stop behaving as individuals.”

To overcome this problem, Flood and his colleagues mixed a colored dye with a colorless solution of cyanostar, a star-shaped macrocycle molecule that prevents the fluorescent molecules from interacting as the mixture solidifies, keeping their optical properties intact. As the mixture became a solid, SMILES formed, which the researchers then grew into crystals, precipitated into dry powders, and finally spun into a thin film or incorporated directly into polymers. Since the cyanostar macrocycles form building blocks that generate a lattice-like checkerboard, when the researchers plugged a dye into the lattice it would take on the dye’s color and appearance.

While previous research had already developed an approach to spacing the dyes apart using macrocycle molecules, it relied on colored macrocycles to do the job. Flood and colleagues found that colorless macrocycles were key.

“Some people think that colorless macrocycles are unattractive, but they allowed the isolation lattice to fully express the bright fluorescence of the dyes unencumbered by the colors of the macrocycles,” says Flood.

Next, the researchers plan to explore the properties of fluorescent materials formed using this novel technique, with the aim of working with dye makers in the future to realize the materials’ full potential in a variety of different applications.

“These materials are totally new, so we do not know which of their innate properties are actually going to offer superior functionality,” says Flood. “We also do not know the materials’ limits. So, we will develop a fundamental understanding of how they work, providing a robust set of design rules for making new properties. This is critical for putting these materials into the hands of others – we want to pursue crowd sourcing and to work with others in this effort.”

This story is adapted from material from Cell Press, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier. Link to original source.

Source: https://www.materialstoday.com/optical-materials/news/new-smiles-light-up-the-room/

Metal

CAAM: Auto vehicles sales in China down 3.9 percent in Oct 1-20

In the October 1-20 period of the current year, sales of automotive vehicles of 11 major automakers in China amounted to 1.027 million units.

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In the October 1-20 period of the current year, output and sales of automotive vehicles of 11 major automakers in China amounted to 1.215 million units and 1.027 million units, up 6.9 percent and down 3.9 percent year on year, respectively, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

In particular, passenger vehicle output and sales totaled 1.039 million units and 925,000 units, up 2.8 percent and down 5.3 percent year on year. Meanwhile, commercial vehicle output and sales reached 176,000 units and 101,000 units, up 40 percent and 11.5 percent year on year.

Source: https://www.steelorbis.com/steel-news/latest-news/caam-auto-vehicles-sales-in-china-down-39-percent-in-oct-1_20-1169895.htm

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Metal

China emerges as India’s top steel export destination in H1 2020-21, after Vietnam

China emerged as India’s biggest steel export destination during the first half of the fiscal year 2020-21 (April-September) with 1.9 million mt.

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China emerged as India’s biggest steel export destination during the first half of the fiscal year 2020-21 (April-September) with 1.9 million mt shipped, up from 2,500 mt during the corresponding period of the previous fiscal year, according to data of the Joint Plant Committee (JPC) under India’s steel ministry, the sole official compiler of industry data.

During the period, China replaced Vietnam as India’s biggest steel export destination. Indian exports of steel to Vietnam during the first half of the current fiscal were estimated at 1.61 million mt, up from 1.04 million mt during the corresponding period of the previous fiscal year, JPC data showed.

In H1 FY 2020-21, India also emerged as a net exporter of steel, exporting 6.54 million mt, up 66.3 percent year on year. Of the total Indian steel exports, hot rolled coil (HRC) formed the bulk of the volume – up to 70 percent.

Imports during the period came to 1.99 million mt, down 50.6 percent year on year.

However, in September Indian steel exports showed signs of tapering off on the back of rising domestic demand from key industries like automotive and consumer durables.

The JPC data show that exports in September declined by 16.8 percent from August and 15.2 percent from September 2019. Total September exports were recorded by JPC at 864,000 mt.

Source: https://www.steelorbis.com/steel-news/latest-news/china-emerges-as-indias-top-steel-export-destination-in-h1-2020_21-after-vietnam-1169891.htm

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Metal

India’s Tata Metaliks resumes BF operations after maintenance shutdown

India’s Tata Metaliks Limited (TML) has resumed operations of its blast furnace from today.

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India’s Tata Metaliks Limited (TML) has resumed operations of its blast furnace from today, according to a regulatory filing of the company on Monday, October 26.

Last month, TML had shut down this blast furnace at its steel mill in West Bengal for planned repair and maintenance, including hearth profiling.

Tata Metaliks has a 300,000 metric ton per year pig iron production facility along with a 200,000 metric ton per year ductile pipe making facility and is also building a 15 MW captive thermal power plant.

Source: https://www.steelorbis.com/steel-news/latest-news/indias-tata-metaliks-resumes-bf-operations-after-maintenance-shutdown-1169882.htm

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