Ten broad years

Ten broad years

Nature Materials is ten years old, and we use this occasion to look back at how authors, reviewers and editors have contributed to the journal. We feature on the cover of this issue a 'word cloud' that shows the most recurrent words that appeared in the titles of published articles, and discuss in an editorial statistics on manuscript decisions and on the geographical share of manuscripts and reviewers. We also list a selection of what we consider landmark articles published in the journal over the past ten years.



The word cloud on this issue's cover shows the 222 words that appeared at least ten times in all the titles published in the journal (including news items). The size and colour intensity of each word are proportional to its frequency, counts for word derivations were aggregated into one form, and common English words, names of disciplines and the word 'materials' were not included.



A decade in numbers p743


On the tenth anniversary of the launch of Nature Materials, we look back at how authors, reviewers and editors have contributed to the journal by evaluating data such as decision types and times, and the geographical share of submitted and published manuscripts.


Highlighted articles

A selection of 20 papers among those that we consider landmark articles published in the journal over the past ten years. They are ordered by subject area, from condensed-matter and applied physics to materials chemistry, soft matter and biomaterials.


January 2006

Temperature rise at shear bands in metallic glasses

John J. Lewandowski & A. Lindsay Greer

The development of materials capable of handling large mechanical stress requires the understanding of energy dissipation within the material. Here, a clever experimental technique demonstrates that deformation-induced shear bands take most of the heat.


April 2010

Critical-like behaviour of glass-forming liquids

Hajime Tanaka, Takeshi Kawasaki, Hiroshi Shintani & Keiji Watanabe

As a liquid approaches its glass transition temperature its dynamics slows down and the material becomes more heterogeneous. Here, critical-like fluctuations of static structural order, widely present in glass-forming liquids, are found to be the origin of such dynamic heterogeneity, suggesting a direct link between critical phenomena and the glass transition.


January 2007

Atomic structure of the binary icosahedral Yb–Cd quasicrystal

Hiroyuki Takakura, Cesar Pay Gómez, Akiji Yamamoto, Marc De Boissieu & An Pang Tsai

Determining the positions of the atoms in an icosahedral quasicrystal had previously been a considerable challenge. This study provides an accurate description of the three-dimensional atomic structure of a representative icosahedral quasicrystal from building units having singular atomic decorations, and represented an essential step in the structure determination of quasicrystal phases.


April 2011

Nodeless superconducting gap in AxFe2Se2 (A=K,Cs) revealed by angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy

Y. Zhang, L. X. Yang, M. Xu, Z. R. Ye, F. Chen, C. He, H. C. Xu, J. Jiang, B. P. Xie, J. J. Ying, X. F. Wang, X. H. Chen, J. P. Hu, M. Matsunami, S. Kimura & D. L. Feng

Knowledge of the symmetry of the superconducting order parameter is essential for understanding the origin of superconductivity. This study on heavily doped Fe2Se2 shows that in these compounds the order parameter has a relatively simple symmetry in comparison with most other iron-based superconductors, and questions the generality of the results that had been obtained so far.


January 2007

Multiferroics: a magnetic twist for ferroelectricity

Sang-Wook Cheong & Maxim Mostovoy

The control of magnetism with electric fields and vice versa is of great technological and fundamental importance. This Review highlights progress made in the study of multiferroic materials, where magnetism and ferroelectricity are coupled.


September 2010

A perpendicular-anisotropy CoFeB–MgO magnetic tunnel junction

S. Ikeda, K. Miura, H. Yamamoto, K. Mizunuma, H. D. Gan, M. Endo, S. Kanai, J. Hayakawa, F. Matsukura & H. Ohno

Materials with perpendicular anisotropy receive considerable attention owing to their potential use in efficient memory devices. This study shows that a type of magnetic tunnel junction widely studied for in-plane magnetic anisotropy has all the properties necessary to realize stable and efficient devices based on perpendicular magnetic anisotropy.


April 2006

Switching the electrical resistance of individual dislocations in single-crystalline SrTiO3

Krzysztof Szot, Wolfgang Speier, Gustav Bihlmayer & Rainer Waser

To increase the storage density in memory devices, the volume that is used to hold one bit of data has to be reduced. This study shows that the bistable switching of individual dislocations occurring as a result of oxygen diffusion in perovskite oxides in the presence of a low-voltage electric field can lead to high-density memory devices.


March 2007

The rise of graphene

Andre K. Geim & Konstantin S. Novoselov

This Progress Article discusses the wide range of new physics and potential device applications of graphene — a two-dimensional material that exhibits exceptionally high crystal and electronic qualities.


July 2009

An optical cloak made of dielectrics

Jason Valentine, Jensen Li, Thomas Zentgraf, Guy Bartal & Xiang Zhang

Demonstrations of cloaking, where objects are rendered invisible at certain frequencies, had been limited to the microwave regime. This study demonstrates a cloaking device that functions within a broad range of frequencies in the near-infrared regime.


June 2005

Nanowire dye-sensitized solar cells

Matt Law, Lori E. Greene, Justin C. Johnson, Richard Saykally & Peidong Yang

Excitonic solar cells are attractive devices for inexpensive, large-scale solar-energy conversion. A dye-sensitized cell in which the traditional nanoparticle film is replaced by an array of oriented and crystalline nanowires is shown to exhibit an efficiency of 1.5% in full sunlight.


May 2011

Low-temperature fabrication of high-performance metal oxide thin-film electronics via combustion processing

Myung-Gil Kim, Mercouri G. Kanatzidis, Antonio Facchetti & Tobin J. Marks

Solution-deposited metal oxides have great potential for large-area electronics but they generally require high annealing temperatures, which are incompatible with flexible polymeric substrates. Here, combustion processing is reported as a low-temperature route for the deposition of diverse metal oxide films, and high-performance transistors are demonstrated using this method.


June 2009

Stretchable active-matrix organic light-emitting diode display using printable elastic conductors

Tsuyoshi Sekitani, Hiroyoshi Nakajima, Hiroki Maeda, Takanori Fukushima, Takuzo Aida, Kenji Hata & Takao Someya

Stretchable electronics enables applications on arbitrary curved surfaces and movable parts. This study describes stretchable active-matrix displays containing integrated electronic circuits created using a method that fabricates printable elastic conductors comprising single-walled carbon nanotubes uniformly dispersed in a fluorinated rubber.


November 2008

Materials for electrochemical capacitors

Patrice Simon & Yury Gogotsi

Supercapacitors complement batteries and conventional solid-state and electrolytic capacitors in electrical energy storage and energy-harvesting applications. This Review discusses advances in nanostructured supercapacitor materials and in the understanding of energy-storage mechanisms.


April 2008

Ru–Pt core–shell nanoparticles for preferential oxidation of carbon monoxide in hydrogen

Selim Alayoglu, Anand U. Nilekar, Manos Mavrikakis & Bryan Eichhorn

To produce hydrogen by reforming hydrocarbons, efficient catalysts capable of removing carbon monoxide are needed. This study shows that this can be achieved through a preferential oxidation mechanism using nanoparticle catalysts consisting of a ruthenium core covered with platinum.


February 2007

A flexible interpenetrating coordination framework with a bimodal porous functionality

Tapas Kumar Maji, Ryotaro Matsuda & Susumu Kitagawa

The rational synthesis of microporous coordination networks was often thwarted by interpenetration and architectural frailty. Here, the design and synthesis of a metal–organic framework consisting of two interpenetrating networks with permanent porosity, controlled sorption properties and high thermal stability is demonstrated.


August 2007

Anisotropy of building blocks and their assembly into complex structures

Sharon C. Glotzer & Michael J. Solomon

Anisotropic particles with diverse shapes, materials and functionalities are increasingly available through advanced synthesis. This Review provides a unifying conceptual framework for describing and classifying building blocks that can be conceivably incorporated into superlattices or hierarchical assemblies.


July 2009

Understanding biophysicochemical interactions at the nano–bio interface

Andre E. Nel, Lutz Mädler, Darrell Velegol, Tian Xia, Eric M. V. Hoek, Ponisseril Somasundaran, Fred Klaessig, Vince Castranova & Mike Thompson

Probing the various interfaces between nanoparticles and biomaterials such as DNA, proteins, membranes and cells allows the development of predictive relationships between structure and activity that are determined by material properties. This Review discusses the dynamic physicochemical interactions and the fundamental forces at play under colloidal conditions, as well as the development of methods for probing such interfaces.


February 2010

Emerging applications of stimuli-responsive polymer materials

Martien A. Cohen Stuart, Wilhelm T. S. Huck, Jan Genzer, Marcus Müller, Christopher Ober, Manfred Stamm, Gleb B. Sukhorukov, Igal Szleifer, Vladimir V. Tsukruk, Marek Urban, Françoise Winnik, Stefan Zauscher, Igor Luzinov & Sergiy Minko

Stimuli-responsive polymers can be engineered, in both film and colloid forms, to respond to a variety of inputs, such as temperature or pH. The inherent flexibility in the polymers' structure and responses results in materials that lend themselves to applications in diverse fields, such as drug delivery or sensing. Recent advances and future challenges in this area are discussed in this Review.


December 2007

The control of human mesenchymal cell differentiation using nanoscale symmetry and disorder

Matthew J. Dalby, Nikolaj Gadegaard, Rahul Tare, Abhay Andar, Mathis O. Riehle, Pawel Herzyk, Chris D. W. Wilkinson & Richard O. C. Oreffo

The production of soft tissue rather than bone on the surface of implants often leads to their failure. This study demonstrates that human mesenchymal stem cells can produce bone mineral in response to nanotopographical features in vitro in the absence of osteogenic supplements.


April 2009

Biodegradable luminescent porous silicon nanoparticles for in vivo applications

Ji-Ho Park, Luo Gu, Geoffrey von Maltzahn, Erkki Ruoslahti, Sangeeta N. Bhatia & Michael J. Sailor

Nanomaterials that can circulate in the body have great potential as in vivo imaging and therapeutic agents, yet they are often toxic or show poor biodegradability. This study shows that porous silicon nanoparticles with intrinsic near-infrared luminiscence can be engineered to image tumours or organs, to deliver therapeutics, and to degrade in vivo into benign components that are cleared by the renal system.

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