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Scientific Image - Nanowire Photodetector

This scanning electron micrograph shows a gallium nitride nanowire photodetector device with a zinc oxide core grown by e-beam lithography.

The geometry and structure of nanowires make them both sensitive to light and efficient low-noise signaling devices, so they are ideally suited for applications involving light—such as detection, imaging, information storage, and intrachip optical communications. In addition, different types of nanowires can be combined to create devices sensitive to different wavelengths of light.

• SIZE: The nanowire has a diameter of about 200 nm.

Scientific Image - Silicon Nano-Biosensor

This scanning electron micrograph depicts the functional part of a nano-biosensor containing silicon nanowires. Field effect transistors are best known for their key role in computer microprocessors, but their compatibility with various microfabrication strategies has also led researchers to study them for biosensing applications. For example, glucose biosensors may lead to important innovations in the management of diabetes. The lithographic manufacturing processes involved in their production may mean that such sensors can be produced in quantity and scaled for different applications.

Scientific Image - Organic Light-Emitting Diode

This is a photograph of an organic light-emitting diode (OLED). OLEDs are being used in the newest generation of television screens. An OLED is comprised of a thin organic film held between conductors. When electrical current is applied to the conductors, the film emits a bright light. Because OLEDs emit light, OLED-based displays do not require backlighting. That's why these displays are both thinner and more efficient than today’s common LCD screens, which require an additional internal light source.

Scientific Image - Silicon Nanowire Device

This scanning electron microscope image shows a silicon nanowire resting on two silicon nitride (SiNx) membranes.

Thermoelectric materials convert heat to electricity and vice versa. Most fossil-fuel-powered engines generate waste heat, so researchers are using nanotechnologies to explore ways of making thermoelectric devices more efficient in order to convert that waste heat to usable power—and thus save energy. This assembly was built to measure the thermal conductivity of a silicon nanowire synthesized specifically for thermoelectric applications.

Scientific Image - Silicon Nanowire

This transmission electron microscope image shows a single silicon nanowire.

Thermoelectric materials convert heat to electricity and vice versa. Most fossil-fuel-powered engines generate waste heat, so researchers are using nanotechnologies to explore ways of making thermoelectric devices more efficient in order to convert that waste heat to usable power—and thus save energy.

• SIZE: The diameter of this nanowire is approximately 100 nm.

• IMAGING TOOL: Transmission electron microscope

Scientific Image - Silicon Nanowire Array

This is a scanning electron microscope image of a silicon nanowire array synthesized for thermoelectric applications.

Thermoelectric materials convert heat to electricity and vice versa. Most fossil-fuel-powered engines generate waste heat, so researchers are using nanotechnologies to explore ways of making thermoelectric devices more efficient in order to convert that waste heat to usable power—and thus save energy.

• SIZE: Each nanowire is approximately 100 nm in diameter.

• IMAGING TOOL: Scanning electron microscope

Scientific Image - Gold Nanoshells (SEM)

To create this scanning electron microscope image, gold nanoshells were dispersed in a drop of water which then dried on a glass microscope slide. The colors are due to selective scattering of light by nanoscale particles.

Gold Nanoshells have a variety of uses in nanotechnology, and especially in biomedical applications. Nanoshells like these may play important roles in new kinds of cancer treatments, disease detection, and imaging techniques.

• SIZE: These gold nanoshells are each about 120 nm in diameter.

• IMAGING TOOL: Scanning electron microscope

Scientific Image - Gold Nanoshells (optical microscope)

To create this optical microscope image, gold nanoshells were dispersed in a drop of water which then dried on a glass microscope slide. The colors are due to selective scattering of light by nanoscale particles.

Gold Nanoshells have a variety of uses in nanotechnology, and especially in biomedical applications. Nanoshells like these may play important roles in new kinds of cancer treatments, disease detection, and imaging techniques.

• SIZE: These gold nanoshells are each about 120 nm in diameter.

• IMAGING TOOL: Optical microscope

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