Soft materials

Soft materials are materials that can be easily deformed by thermal stresses or thermal fluctuations at about room temperature. Soft materials include liquids, polymers, foams, gels, colloids, granular materials, as well as most soft biological materials.

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Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    Nature harnesses fractal geometry to create structures with unusual surface-to-volume ratios. Now, a new design approach enables the reversible assembly of functional enzymes into arboreal patterns with fractal geometry.

    • Iris D. Young
    •  & James S. Fraser
    Nature Chemistry 11, 599-600
  • News and Views |

    Quantitative atomic-scale images of electric potentials at surfaces have now been obtained with a non-contact atomic force microscope by functionalizing the tip as a quantum dot sensor.

    • Mats Persson
  • News and Views |

    In biological systems, order typically emerges from out-of-equilibrium molecular processes that control both static patterns and dynamic changes. Now, the self-regulating assembly and disassembly of a synthetic system has been achieved on the micrometre scale, by coupling the growth of a DNA nanotube to a biochemical oscillator.

    • Tim Liedl
    Nature Chemistry 11, 497-499
  • News and Views |

    The transport properties of many two-dimensional systems are strongly affected by the proximity of a periodic pattern. Colloidal particles are now shown to have preferred sliding routes due to competing symmetries between two unmatched crystalline surfaces.

    • Pietro Tierno