Transparent electronic books and human-looking robots: the new field of ‘organic electronics’

Organic electronics are flexible and already being used to make curved screens but future applications could include biosensors and bendable solar panels. Image credit - Maurizio Pesce/Wikimedia, licenced under CC BY 2.0

Electronics made from carbon rather than silicon could lead to a new generation of medical devices, sensors and perhaps even robots, according to Professor Andreas Hirsch, chair of organic chemistry at Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg in Germany. Materials such as graphene could soon be appearing in electronic devices and could lead to entirely new forms of ‘chemical’ … Read more

Forest darkness helps stave off effects of nitrogen pollution – but this is set to change

The life that grows underfoot accounts for 80% of the biodiversity in a temperate forest. Image credit - under CC0

Europe’s forests are sitting on a pollution timebomb which could rewrite their ecology when it explodes, say researchers. Delicate forest floor plants such as wood sorrel or violet, and the balance among the tree species that tower above them, are all threatened by decades of accumulated nitrogen pollution. A study has found that the darkness … Read more