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Volume 9 Issue 6, June 2024

Hydrogels share similarities with the soft tissues of the human body, having great application prospects in tissue engineering and medical implants. Developing strong and tough hydrogels is crucial for their biomedical applications, but traditional hydrogels typically exhibit weak and brittle mechanical properties due to the inhomogeneity of their network and rubber-like elasticity, which lacks energy dissipation mechanisms. The cover art depicts a typical strategy for improving network uniformity to enhance hydrogel strength. See Li X. and Gong J. P.

Cover: David Johnston


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Research Highlights

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  • Hydrogels are promising in various fields, but improving their mechanical properties is critical for certain applications. This Review comprehensively explores design principles to construct hydrogels with superior mechanical strength, toughness and fatigue resistance, and discusses self-growing and self-reinforced hydrogels.

    • Xueyu Li
    • Jian Ping Gong
    Review Article
  • Inverted (p–i–n) perovskite solar cells are promising candidates for real-life applications. This Review discusses the current status of this technology, key strategies for stability and efficiency improvements — from the materials selection to interface engineering and device construction — and future outlooks.

    • Qi Jiang
    • Kai Zhu
    Review Article
  • The family of AV3Sb5 kagome superconductors provides a fascinating platform for the investigation of the interplay between superconductivity and charge-density wave order. This Review discusses the properties of the anomalous charge-density wave and superconducting states observed in these materials and surveys future directions in the study of these and related kagome metals.

    • Stephen D. Wilson
    • Brenden R. Ortiz
    Review Article
  • Liquid-metal-based magnetic fluids exhibit rich electromagnetic, thermofluidic behaviours, leading to emerging applications in soft robotics, stretchable electronics, energy management and biomedical technology. This Review covers the fabrication, properties and applications of liquid-metal-based magnetic fluids, highlighting their superiority over traditional magnetic fluids.

    • Wentao Xiang
    • Yongyu Lu
    • Jing Liu
    Review Article
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