California NanoSystems Institute
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IN THE SPOTLIGHT:
February 06, 2017 - "Professor Heather Maynard has been elected a 2017 Polymeric Materials Science and Engineering (PMSE) Fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS)"

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Device developed by UCLA and Swedish scientists would make genetic tests available in remote areas

Meghan Steele Horan | January 17, 2017

Just like an alphabet is made up of individual letters, DNA is composed of chemical bases. And in the same way that letters must be placed in a specific order to form words and sentences, the sequence of chemical bases is incredibly important in how DNA functions and codes our lives.

One reason scientists pay close attention to DNA sequence is that it can help them identify a gene or a mutation that may cause a disease. But the analysis typically requires sending patients’ cell and tissue samples to well-equipped labs, which in many cases are located far away. This is a particular challenge in settings with limited resources — in developing countries and underdeveloped communities, for example — where health care workers do not always have the tools or the expertise to conduct DNA sequencing analysis.

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The California NanoSystems Institute is proud to see the launch of Carbonics Inc.'s first product, ZEBRA carbon-on-silicon technology for radio frequency (RF) components and devices.

Carbonics is a venture-backed startup that is focused on developing and commercializing a carbon-on-wafer single chip solution that vastly improves the power consumption and performance of wireless products—including next-generation smartphone and communication devices.

The ZEBRA product is the first available platform solution for realizing next-generation semiconductor devices technologies using the novel material of semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes (CNT).

For more information please check out the article from Business Wire
December 19, 2016 - CNSI grad students show them fun side of science

By: Meghan Steele Horan

Graduate student volunteers and staff from the California NanoSystems Institute at UCLA recently showed more than 300 high school students from Bell Gardens High School that there’s a fun side to science at “Ask a Scientist,” an event that the high school hosts annually.

High school students flocked to the school auditorium to participate in hands-on demonstrations and pose questions about science, nanotechnology, research and available opportunities for internships and programs.

The school partnered with CNSI to bring concepts of nanotechnology and science to students from this underserved, predominantly Latino community who typically do not have access to science or scientists outside the classroom, said high school officials. "This event is special because it allows our students to see what’s out there in the science world," said Juan Herrera, school principal. "These types of opportunities give our students the background, the knowledge, and the motivation to want to become scientists."

One fun experiment that the Bell Gardens students observed involved superhydrophobic surfaces, based on a phenomenon where a surface repels water due to properties at the molecular and near-molecular level. Swimsuits made from fabrics with these properties were used in the Beijing Olympics, so that water flowing over the suit could be directed in such a way that helped the swimmer go faster — acting like the skin of a shark.

"One of the volunteers who majors in organic chemistry showed us a Speedo [swimsuit] that uses shark technology where the water slides right off, making the Olympic swimmer swim way faster,” said Daniela Morales, a senior at Bell Gardens.

Students eagerly chatted with the CNSI students and staff. "One volunteer went into detail about how you can use nanotechnology for solar energy," said senior Alex Gonzalez. “We had a conversation about solar panels and the differences between batteries and solar energy itself. … UCLA has a lot of outreach opportunities for students. This event was really eye-opening.” Morales noted that some of the UCLA scientists that were at the event were also Latino. "I never thought I would be here," said the student. "It’s interesting to know that there are people that come from similar backgrounds as ours that are in the STEM field."

This event was not only beneficial for the students, but for the volunteers as well. Morgan Howe, a CNSI volunteer and a UCLA graduate student studying organic chemistry, said she enjoys teaching people and students about science.

"I chose to be involved in this event in particular because I like helping to teach science — and not just in the classroom. It was an opportunity to get people excited who wouldn’t normally be excited about science," Howe said.

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FEATURED NEWS

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Bringing science education outside of the classroom and into the community
 
UCLA team makes step toward long-lasting, fast-charging and high-powered energy storage
 
How nanoscience will improve our health and lives in the coming years
 
Congratulations to Sir J. Fraser Stoddart, former CNSI Director (2002-2007), for winning the Nobel Prize in Chemistry!
 
Researchers design wearable microscope that can measure fluorescent dyes through skin
 
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