Volume 17 Issue 10, October 2018

Volume 17 Issue 10

Sailing to space

The goal of the Breakthrough Starshot Initiative is to send in a few decades an unmanned nanospacecraft to Proxima Centauri b, consisting of a lightsail propelled by laser radiation pressure.

See Editorial, Comment by Ghidini and Perspective by Atwater et al

Image: Cora Went, Artur Davoyan, and Joeson Wong, Caltech. Background courtesy of NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Wisconsin. Cover Design: David Shand. [Note: The image credit originally published was incorrect; it has now been updated.]

Editorial

Comment

  • Comment |

    Space missions require materials that can preserve functional integrity under extreme conditions of heat, impact and radiation. This Comment outlines the materials properties needed for some of the most ambitious space missions and presents the design and testing principles before their incorporation.

    • Tommaso Ghidini

News & Views

  • News & Views |

    Physicists are searching for superconducting materials that can host Majoranas. New evidence for these elusive particles is provided by missing Shapiro steps in a Josephson effect mediated by an accidental Dirac semimetal.

    • Fan Zhang
    •  & Wei Pan
  • News & Views |

    A graphite and hexagonal boron nitride heterojunction enables superlubric sliding, almost independent of alignment orientation, in micrometre-sized contacts under ‘real-life’ working conditions.

    • J. G. Vilhena
    •  & Rubén Pérez
  • News & Views |

    The metallic state of an iron chalcogenide superconductor is demonstrated to be characterized by the simultaneous presence of itinerant carriers with different degrees of correlation. This orbital-selective metal arises from a sizeable Hund’s coupling.

    • Massimo Capone
  • News & Views |

    Multiscale modelling provides atomic-level insights into how oxygen vacancy defect nucleation leads to the formation of the visible light photocatalyst black titania.

    • Vassiliki-Alexandra Glezakou
    •  & Roger Rousseau
  • News & Views |

    Micromilling gem-quality diamond tips into a toroidal shape has been shown to greatly extend the accessible pressure range of standard diamond anvil cells, opening the way for studies in extreme physics of high-density matter.

    • Malcolm McMahon

Perspectives

  • Perspective |

    This Perspective explores the optical, mechanical and thermal properties required to successfully design an ultralight spacecraft that can reach Proxima Centauri b, which is the goal of the Starshot Breakthrough Initiative.

    • Harry A. Atwater
    • , Artur R. Davoyan
    • , Ognjen Ilic
    • , Deep Jariwala
    • , Michelle C. Sherrott
    • , Cora M. Went
    • , William S. Whitney
    •  & Joeson Wong

Articles

  • Article |

    Superconductivity is induced in an accidental Dirac semimetal via the proximity effect.

    • Chuan Li
    • , Jorrit C. de Boer
    • , Bob de Ronde
    • , Shyama V. Ramankutty
    • , Erik van Heumen
    • , Yingkai Huang
    • , Anne de Visser
    • , Alexander A. Golubov
    • , Mark S. Golden
    •  & Alexander Brinkman
  • Article |

    The model alloy of Au–Ag is studied to decouple the role of stress and corrosion in intergranular cracking caused by metal dissolution. Nanoporous corrosion layers can mechanically inject a crack into grain boundaries of the parent phase.

    • N. Badwe
    • , X. Chen
    • , D. K. Schreiber
    • , M. J. Olszta
    • , N. R. Overman
    • , E. K. Karasz
    • , A. Y. Tse
    • , S. M. Bruemmer
    •  & K. Sieradzki
  • Article |

    A systematic analysis is performed to reveal how deposition conditions and the use of cations and solvents affect the composition and orientation of 2D and quasi-2D metal halide perovskites in thin films.

    • Rafael Quintero-Bermudez
    • , Aryeh Gold-Parker
    • , Andrew H. Proppe
    • , Rahim Munir
    • , Zhenyu Yang
    • , Shana O. Kelley
    • , Aram Amassian
    • , Michael F. Toney
    •  & Edward H. Sargent
  • Article |

    Reversible structural surface relaxation under laser exposure is observed for monolayers of 2D metal halide perovskites. These structural changes also induce reversible shifts in the photoluminescence peaks of these materials.

    • Kai Leng
    • , Ibrahim Abdelwahab
    • , Ivan Verzhbitskiy
    • , Mykola Telychko
    • , Leiqiang Chu
    • , Wei Fu
    • , Xiao Chi
    • , Na Guo
    • , Zhihui Chen
    • , Zhongxin Chen
    • , Chun Zhang
    • , Qing-Hua Xu
    • , Jiong Lu
    • , Manish Chhowalla
    • , Goki Eda
    •  & Kian Ping Loh
  • Article |

    Phase transformations driven by compositional change require mass flux across a phase boundary. Lithium migration in LiXFePO4 along the solid/liquid interface now suggests that surface diffusion contributes to tuning phase transformation in anisotropic solids.

    • Yiyang Li
    • , Hungru Chen
    • , Kipil Lim
    • , Haitao D. Deng
    • , Jongwoo Lim
    • , Dimitrios Fraggedakis
    • , Peter M. Attia
    • , Sang Chul Lee
    • , Norman Jin
    • , Jože Moškon
    • , Zixuan Guan
    • , William E. Gent
    • , Jihyun Hong
    • , Young-Sang Yu
    • , Miran Gaberšček
    • , M. Saiful Islam
    • , Martin Z. Bazant
    •  & William C. Chueh
  • Article |

    Magnetocaloric effects can be used for refrigeration, but application uptake is limited due to large amounts of magnetic material used. Here, a cooling cycle is shown that uses thermal hysteresis, significantly reducing magnetic material quantity.

    • Tino Gottschall
    • , Adrià Gràcia-Condal
    • , Maximilian Fries
    • , Andreas Taubel
    • , Lukas Pfeuffer
    • , Lluís Mañosa
    • , Antoni Planes
    • , Konstantin P. Skokov
    •  & Oliver Gutfleisch
  • Article |

    Ultrafast water transport in the surface of Sarracenia trichome is reported and demonstrated in synthetic bioinspired materials, where nano- and microchannels induce high-speed sliding of droplets on top of a thin water film.

    • Huawei Chen
    • , Tong Ran
    • , Yang Gan
    • , Jiajia Zhou
    • , Yi Zhang
    • , Liwen Zhang
    • , Deyuan Zhang
    •  & Lei Jiang

Amendments & Corrections