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Nov 2022 • Energy Storage Materials

Double gas treatment: A successful approach for stabilizing the Li and Mn-rich NCM cathode materials’ electrochemical behavior

Sandipan Maiti, Hadar Sclar, Judith Grinblat, Michael Talianker, Maria Tkachev, Merav Tsubery, Xiaohan Wu, Malachi Noked, Boris Markovsky, Doron Aurbach

Herein, a systematic surface modification approach via double gas (SO2 and NH3) treatment at elevated temperatures is described, aimed to achieve a stable electrochemical performance of Li and Mn-rich NCM cathode materials of a typical composition 0.33Li2MnO3•0.67LiNi0.4Co0.2Mn0.4O2 (HE-NCM). Partial surface reduction of Mn4+ and the formation of a modified interface comprising Li-ions conductive nano-sized Li2SO4/Li2SO3 phases are established. Li-coin cells’ prolonged cycling performance demonstrated significantly improved capacity retention (∼2.2 times higher than untreated cathode materials) for the double-gas-treated cathodes after 400 cycles at a 1.0 C rate. Stable discharge potential and lower voltage hysteresis during cycling were also achieved through the double gas treatment. Comparative electrochemical studies in full-pouch cells [vs. Graphite anodes] also demonstrated …

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Nov 2022 • The Journal of Physical Chemistry C

Nanostructure-free Metal–Dielectric Stacks for Raman Scattering Enhancement and Defect Identification in CVD-Grown Tungsten Disulfide (2H-WS2) Nanosheets

Bharathi Rajeswaran, Rajashree Konar, Sriram Guddala, Tali Sharabani, Eti Teblum, Yaakov Raphael Tischler, Gilbert Daniel Nessim

Low-wavenumber Raman (LWR) spectroscopy determines signatures in structural information and layer-to-layer dependency of transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs). It supports proper 2D TMDC analysis and subsequent layer verification. The nondestructive nature and ultrafast detection make LWR measurements imperative for layer variations and defect investigations. Interference-enhanced Raman scattering utilizes a metal–dielectric layer to enhance the Raman signal. This has been used to study graphene, C60, and Te. Here, we investigate using Al/Al2O3 coatings to enhance the LWR scattering of different 2H-WS2 layers and understand the structures of these large-area nanosheets. Phase-pure WS2 is synthesized by CVD, and the layers are exfoliated via ultrasonication at 80 kHz. Layers were drop-casted on Al/Al2O3 coatings of different thicknesses of Al2O3 to study differences in bilayers up to a …

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Nov 2022 • Scientific Reports

Characterization of alternative mRNA splicing in cultured cell populations representing progressive stages of human fetal kidney development

Yishay Wineberg, Itamar Kanter, Nissim Ben-Haim, Naomi Pode-Shakked, Efrat Bucris, Tali Hana Bar-Lev, Sarit Oriel, Harel Reinus, Yishai Yehuda, Rotem Gershon, Rachel Shukrun, Dekel Dov Bar-Lev, Achia Urbach, Benjamin Dekel, Tomer Kalisky

Nephrons are the functional units of the kidney. During kidney development, cells from the cap mesenchyme—a transient kidney-specific progenitor state—undergo a mesenchymal to epithelial transition (MET) and subsequently differentiate into the various epithelial cell types that create the tubular structures of the nephron. Faults in this transition can lead to a pediatric malignancy of the kidney called Wilms’ tumor that mimics normal kidney development. While human kidney development has been characterized at the gene expression level, a comprehensive characterization of alternative splicing is lacking. Therefore, in this study, we performed RNA sequencing on cell populations representing early, intermediate, and late developmental stages of the human fetal kidney, as well as three blastemal-predominant Wilms’ tumor patient-derived xenografts. Using this newly generated RNAseq data, we identified a set …

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Nov 2022 • Nature Energy

Upshifting potentials to increase reversibility

Doron Aurbach, Mikhael Levi, Netanel Shpigel

One of the biggest hurdles to realise high-performance Li-metal batteries is the instability of Li metal towards all relevant electrolytes. Now, an approach is reported to improve Li cells’ stability by upshifting the Li electrodes’ potential to reduce their voltage gap with the electrolyte electrochemical stability windows.

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Nov 2022 • Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter

Corrigendum: Novel in situ multi-harmonic EQCM-D approach to characterize complex carbon pore architectures for capacitive deionization of brackish water (2016 J. Phys …

Netanel Shpigel, Mikhael D Levi, Sergey Sigalov, Doron Aurbach, Leonid Daikhin, Volker Presser

It has been brought to the authors' notice that the SEM images in figure 2 panels (b) and (d) are related to the incorrect carbon material. A corrected version is shown here in figure 2. The authors apologize for the unfortunate mistake.

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Nov 2022 • Measurement

Diamond protection for reusable ZnO coated fiber-optic measurement head in optoelectrochemical investigation of bisphenol A

Małgorzata Szczerska, Monika Kosowska, Paulina Listewnik, Michał Rycewicz, Mikhael Bechelany, Yafit Fleger, Dror Fixler, Paweł Jakóbczyk

Due to the global problem with plastic contaminating the environment, with bisphenol A (BPA) being one of the highest demand, effective monitoring and purification of the pollutants are required. The electrochemical methods constitute a good solution but, due to polymerization of electrochemical oxidation bisphenol A products and their adsorption to the surfaces, measurement head elements are clogged by the formed film. In this research, we propose a nanocrystalline diamond sheet protection for securing elements in direct contact with bisphenol A during electrochemical processes. The solution was presented on the example of a zinc oxide (ZnO) coating deposited on a fiber-optic end-face by Atomic Layer Deposition. Series of optical and electrochemical measurements were performed in a dedicated hybrid setup. The results show that ZnO can be modified during the electrochemistry leading to the drastic …

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Nov 2022 • Cell Reports

Diet-induced modifications to human microbiome reshape colonic homeostasis in irritable bowel syndrome

Hadar Bootz-Maoz, Ayelet Pearl, Ehud Melzer, Stephen Malnick, Efrat Sharon, Yifat Bennet, Rotem Tsentsarevsky, Shlomi Abuchatzera, Sivan Amidror, Elana Aretz, Shalhevet Azriel, Chen Gam Ze Letova, Maria Naama, Irit Shoval, Orly Yaron, Sarit Karako-Lampert, Shai Bel, Nissan Yissachar


Nov 2022 • The Journal of Physical Chemistry C

Photoactive Antimicrobial CuZnO Nanocrystals

Shira Gigi, Tom Naor, Nir Waiskopf, David Stone, Michal Natan, Gila Jacobi, Adar Levi, Sergei Remennik, Yael Levi-Kalisman, Ehud Banin, Uri Banin

Semiconductor nanocrystals (NCs) are promising photocatalysts due to their high surface area to volume ratio and tunable physicochemical properties. Of particular interest are earth-abundant metal oxides, such as ZnO and CuO, which are stable under ambient conditions and in aqueous media and are environmentally and biologically compatible. While CuO NCs are efficient catalytic and antimicrobial materials featuring strong and broad absorption in the visible region, their challenging surface chemistry and low colloidal stability so far limited their wide implementation as photocatalysts. On the other hand, colloidal ZnO NCs function as excellent photocatalysts in various media, but their absorption is limited to the UV region. Herein, colloidal antimicrobial Cu1–xZnxO NCs are synthesized via a facile and cost-effective method, forming a unique spatial dependent structure and composition, with higher zinc …

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Nov 2022 • Materials

Phosphate-Trapping Liposomes for Long-Term Management of Hyperphosphatemia

Chen Tzror-Azankot, Adi Anaki, Tamar Sadan, Menachem Motiei, Rachela Popovtzer

Hyperphosphatemia is a typical complication of end-stage renal disease, characterized by elevated and life-threatening serum phosphate levels. Hemodialysis does not enable sufficient clearance of phosphate, due to slow cell-to-plasma kinetics of phosphate ions; moreover, dietary restrictions and conventional treatment with oral phosphate binders have low success rates, together with adverse effects. Here, we developed a new concept of phosphate-trapping liposomes, to improve and prolong the control over serum phosphate levels. We designed liposomes modified with polyethylene glycol and encapsulated with the phosphate binder ferric citrate (FC liposomes). These liposomes were found to trap phosphate ions in their inner core, and thereby lower free phosphate ion concentrations in solution and in serum. The FC liposomes showed higher phosphate binding ability as phosphate concentrations increased. Moreover, these liposomes showed a time-dependent increase in uptake of phosphate, up to 25 h in serum. Thus, our findings demonstrate effective long-term phosphate trapping by FC liposomes, indicating their potential to reduce serum phosphate toxicity and improve current management of hyperphosphatemia.

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Nov 2022 • Desalination 542, 116043, 2022

Advances and perspectives in integrated membrane capacitive deionization for water desalination

Qinghao Wu, Dawei Liang, Shanfu Lu, Haining Wang, Yan Xiang, Doron Aurbach, Eran Avraham, Izaak Cohen

Capacitive deionization (CDI) has been considered as the most promising and environmentally friendly electrical desalination technology owing to its low energy consumption and no secondary pollution. CDI is based on the principle of electric double layer for salt ion adsorption, but the existence of co-ions repulsion reduce the charge efficiency, leading to the low salt adsorption capacity. To prevent the intrinsic “co-ion effect” inside the porous carbon electrodes, membrane capacitive deionization (MCDI) by applying an ion-exchange membrane (IEM) to the surface of electrode is of increasing interest. However, MCDI brings various resistances, such as the internal and interface resistances of membrane, as well as the contact resistance between membrane and carbon electrode. More recently, by integrating “membrane” with carbon electrode without the introduction of free-standing IEM, integrated-MCDI has …

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Nov 2022 • Micromachines

High Sensitivity Planar Hall Effect Magnetic Field Gradiometer for Measurements in Millimeter Scale Environments

Hariharan Nhalil, Moty Schultz, Shai Amrusi, Asaf Grosz, Lior Klein

We report a specially designed magnetic field gradiometer based on a single elliptical planar Hall effect (PHE) sensor, which allows measuring magnetic field at nine different positions in a 4 mm length scale. The gradiometer detects magnetic field gradients with equivalent gradient magnetic noises of ∼958, ∼192, ∼51, and ∼26 nT/m√ Hz (pT/mm√Hz) at 0.1, 1, 10, and 50 Hz, respectively. The performance of the gradiometer is tested in ambient conditions by measuring the field gradient induced by electric currents driven in a long straight wire. This gradiometer is expected to be highly useful for the measurement of magnetic field gradients in confined areas for its small footprint, low noise, scalability, simple design, and low costs.

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Nov 2022 • Journal of The Electrochemical Society

Electrochemical Methods of Transference Number Determination for Polymer Electrolyte Systems: A Comparative Study

Shaul Bublil, Miryam Fayena-Greenstein, Yuval Elias, Doron Aurbach

The transference number for cations, t+, is one of the most important parameters for characterizing polymeric and/or composite solid electrolytes. It expresses the contribution of the positive charge carriers to the total conductivity, which in turn reflects the degree of polarization due to the negative carriers in the electrolyte systems. Four electrochemical methods based on different equations commonly used for obtaining t+ are compared. A series of experiments were conducted with solid polymer electrolytes based on polyethylene oxide with and without TiO2 ceramic additive. Interestingly, the oldest method developed and presented four decades ago, emerges as the most simple, reliable, sensitive, repeatable, and stable option for determining t+ values over time.

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Nov 2022 • Superconductor Science and Technology

Characterization of YBa2Cu3O7− δ coplanar resonator for microwave kinetic inductance detectors

Ariel Roitman, A Shaulov, Y Yeshurun

We demonstrate an improved YBa 2 Cu 3 O 7− δ-based microwave kinetic inductance detector with a quality factor and noise equivalent power, $\sim {10^{-12}}{\mkern 1mu}{\text {W}}{\mkern 1mu}{\sqrt {{\text {Hz}}}^{-1}} $ at 10 K. Zero field cooled (ZFC) and field cooled (FC) measurements of the magnetic field dependence of the resonance characteristics, show substantially different behavior, indicating that both the screening currents and vortices play a role. The ZFC measurements exhibit a sharp decrease of the resonance frequency, , and at low fields, up to the full penetration field, revealing the dominant role of the screening currents. In contrast, the FC measurements exhibit a moderate decrease of and with field, revealing the role of vortices and reflecting the field dependence of the penetration depth in a d-wave superconductor.

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Nov 2022 • ACS Applied Polymer Materials

Carbon Dot Biopolymer-Based Flexible Functional Films for Antioxidant and Food Monitoring Applications

Poushali Das, Sayan Ganguly, Syed Rahin Ahmed, Masoomeh Sherazee, Shlomo Margel, Aharon Gedanken, Seshasai Srinivasan, Amin Reza Rajabzadeh

Heteroatom-doped carbon dot (CD)-reinforced flexible, antioxidant, and UV-resistant polymeric thin films have been fabricated by a facile physical compounding strategy associated with the ‘cast and peel’ technique. The prepared CDs were found to be stable in aqueous media because of their zeta potential value (−5.85 mV). There was no significant change in the zeta potential values during 7 days of storage, indicating the long-term stability of CPCDs. CD-reinforced thermoplastic starch (TPS)/κ-carrageenan hybrid films have been developed as antioxidants to improve the shelf-life of agro-products. Besides this, they also qualified for mechanical strength (>40 MPa), transparency (∼77%), nondeteriorative dimensional integrity at a high relative humidity (∼97%), and UV-resistant properties. For assessing the food preservation behavior, the leaching of CDs also has been studied by time-dependent sustained …

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Nov 2022 • arXiv preprint arXiv:2211.06278

Temperature-dependence of the CISS effect from measurements in Chiral molecular intercalation super-lattices

Subhajit Sarkar, Seif Alwan, Amos Sharoni, Yonatan Dubi

We detail here some matters arising from the recent paper by Qian et. al., Nature 606, pages 902-908 (2022). We demonstrate, based on data supplied by Qian et. al., and corroborated by theoretical modeling, that one of the central conclusions of the manuscript - namely the behavior of the chirality-induced spin-selectivity (CISS) effect at low temperatures - can actually be consistently interpreted in a different way, which is in fact opposite to the interpretation proposed by Qian et. al.

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Nov 2022 • Journal of The Electrochemical Society

Improving Li Anode Reversibility in Li–S Batteries by ZnO Coated Separators Using Atomic Layer Deposition

Shalev Blanga, Reut Yemini, Eti Teblum, Merav Tsubery, Sarah Taragin, Malachi Noked

Lithium-sulfur batteries (LSB) are considered a very attractive alternative to lithium-ion batteries due to their high theoretical capacity and low cost of the active materials. However, the realization of LSB is hostage to many challenges associated with the cathode and anode response to the electrochemical conditions inside the battery cell. While working with LSB, elemental sulfur undergoes multielectron reduction reactions until it is reduced to Li 2 S. The intermediate long chain lithium-polysulfide (LiPS) species are soluble, hence diffuse through the electrolyte solution from the cathode side to the anode. This" shuttle" phenomenon considered to be one of the main issues of LSB. Most effort in investigating LSB focused on the cathode side while only few considered the importance of the lithium anode reversibility and the separator role in preventing the" shuttle" phenomenon. In the current work, we use Atomic Layer …

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Nov 2022 • Advanced Energy Materials

Superstructure variation and improved cycling of anion redox active sodium manganese oxides due to doping by iron

Xiaodong Qi, Langyuan Wu, Zhiwei Li, Yuxuan Xiang, Yunan Liu, Kangsheng Huang, Elias Yuval, Doron Aurbach, Xiaogang Zhang

Anionic redox provides an effective way to overcome the capacity bottleneck of sodium‐ion batteries. A dominant role is played by the arrangement of alkali A and transition metal M in the NaxAyM1‐yO2 superstructure. Here, in situ X‐ray diffraction and ex situ 7Li nuclear magnetic resonance of P2 type Na0.6Li0.2Mn0.8O2 with ribbon‐ordered superstructure illustrate structural changes and explain the evolution of the electrochemical behavior of electrodes comprising this active mass, during cycling. Upon substitution of a small amount of manganese by iron, Na0.67Li0.2Mn0.73Fe0.07O2 is formed with a honeycomb‐ordered superstructure. Experimental characterizations and theoretical calculations elucidate the effect of iron on oxygen redox activity. The iron‐doped material considerably outperforms the undoped Na0.6Li0.2Mn0.8O2 as a cathode material for rechargeable Na‐ion batteries. This research reveals …

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Nov 2022 • ACS Applied Polymer Materials

Carbon dot biopolymer-based flexible functional films for antioxidant and food monitoring applications

Poushali Das, Sayan Ganguly, Syed Rahin Ahmed, Masoomeh Sherazee, Shlomo Margel, Aharon Gedanken, Seshasai Srinivasan, Amin Reza Rajabzadeh


Nov 2022 • Cell Reports

Diet-induced modifications to human microbiome reshape colonic homeostasis in irritable bowel syndrome

Hadar Bootz-Maoz, Ayelet Pearl, Ehud Melzer, Stephen Malnick, Efrat Sharon, Yifat Bennet, Rotem Tsentsarevsky, Shlomi Abuchatzera, Sivan Amidror, Elana Aretz, Shalhevet Azriel, Chen Gam Ze Letova, Maria Naama, Irit Shoval, Orly Yaron, Sarit Karako-Lampert, Shai Bel, Nissan Yissachar

Changes in microbiome composition are associated with a wide array of human diseases, turning the human microbiota into an attractive target for therapeutic intervention. Yet, clinical translation of these findings requires the establishment of causative connections between specific microbial taxa and their functional impact on host tissues. Here, we infuse gut organ cultures with longitudinal microbiota samples collected from therapy-naive patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) under a low-fermentable oligo-, di-, mono-saccharides and polyols (FODMAP) diet. We show that post-diet microbiota regulates intestinal expression of inflammatory and neuro-muscular gene sets. Specifically, we identify Bifidobacterium adolescentis as a diet-sensitive pathobiont that alters tight junction integrity and disrupts gut barrier functions. Collectively, we present a pathway discovery platform for mechanistic dissection and …

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Nov 2022 • Iscience

A seven-transmembrane protein-TM7SF3, resides in nuclear speckles and regulates alternative splicing

Roi Isaac, Yaron Vinik, Martin Mikl, Shani Nadav-Eliyahu, Hadas Shatz-Azoulay, Adi Yaakobi, Natalie DeForest, Amit R Majithia, Nicholas JG Webster, Yaron Shav-Tal, Eytan Elhanany, Yehiel Zick

The seven-transmembrane superfamily member 3 protein (TM7SF3) is a p53-regulated homeostatic factor that attenuates cellular stress and the unfolded protein response. Here we show that TM7SF3 localizes to nuclear speckles; eukaryotic nuclear bodies enriched in splicing factors. This unexpected location for a trans-membranal protein enables formation of stable complexes between TM7SF3 and pre-mRNA splicing factors including DHX15, LARP7, HNRNPU, RBM14, and HNRNPK. Indeed, TM7SF3 regulates alternative splicing of >330 genes, mainly at the 3′end of introns by directly modulating the activity of splicing factors such as HNRNPK. These effects are observed both in cell lines and primary human pancreatic islets. Accordingly, silencing of TM7SF3 results in differential expression of 1465 genes (about 7% of the human genome); with 844 and 621 genes being up- or down-regulated, respectively …

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Nov 2022 • Nature Communications

Engineering high quality graphene superlattices via ion milled ultra-thin etching masks

David Barcons Ruiz, Hanan Herzig Sheinfux, Rebecca Hoffmann, Iacopo Torre, Hitesh Agarwal, Roshan Krishna Kumar, Lorenzo Vistoli, Takashi Taniguchi, Kenji Watanabe, Adrian Bachtold, Frank HL Koppens

Nanofabrication research pursues the miniaturization of patterned feature size. In the current state of the art, micron scale areas can be patterned with features down to ~30 nm pitch using electron beam lithography. Here, we demonstrate a nanofabrication technique which allows patterning periodic structures with a pitch down to 16 nm. It is based on focused ion beam milling of suspended membranes, with minimal proximity effects typical to standard electron beam lithography. The membranes are then transferred and used as hard etching masks. We benchmark our technique by electrostatically inducing a superlattice potential in graphene and observe bandstructure modification in electronic transport. Our technique opens the path towards the realization of very short period superlattices in 2D materials, but with the ability to control lattice symmetries and strength. This can pave the way for a versatile solid-state …

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