Welcome to this month’s issue of Materials Today. In my last editorial I alluded to some announcements coming up for the Materials Today family; and now I’m happy to announce the first of these. We will be introducing a new member to the family in the form of a new journal – Materials Today: Proceedings. Materials Today: Proceedings will provide a fast and flexible route to the publication of research presented at leading scientific conferences spanning the field of materials science, technology and engineering. The journal will offer open access and traditional subscription based publishing options, as well as other exciting options via www.materialstoday.com. More details will be available via the website shortly; but if you are interested in publishing conference proceedings, you can get in touch by emailing materialstoday@elsevier.com.

And there are more announcements to come shortly; so remember to check back next month...

In the last month we’ve held webinars on advanced materials analysis using micro-XRF for SEMs, as well as looking at integrated EDS and EBSD microanalysis. If you missed those webinars, you can view them online at any time by visiting http://www.materialstoday.com/webinars. Coming up, we’ll be looking at new innovations for characterizing the mechanical properties of thin films: there’s still time to register by following the link above. Also coming up is our next Virtual Conference, taking place between the 19–21st November 2013. This event has a focus on the rapidly growing field of biomaterials, and you can register for free by visiting http://www.materialstoday.com/virtualconference/materialstoday-virtual-conference-biomaterials-2013.

In this issue’s Comment article, Lawrence Weinstein and Ranjan Dash ask whether exotic carbons have failed for use in supercapacitors. And on the cover you’ll find spray pyrolyzed Sn-ZnO thin films with a cabbage-like morphology: head over to the Uncovered section to find out more from N. L. Tarwal et al.

On to the reviews, Yuehe Lin and colleagues discuss graphene based materials for biomedical applications; a material that is receiving a lot of attention in this field thanks to its unique physicochemical properties. Next, Svetlana Boriskina, Hadi Ghasemi and Gang Chen take a look at plasmonic materials for energy applications; covering the physical mechanisms at play and their technological uses. Shuo Chen and Zhifeng Ren take a look at recent progress in the use of half-Heusler materials for moderate temperature thermoelectric applications, focusing on the synthesis methods for optimizing parameters to enhance the thermoelectric performance in these materials. Finally, J-F Le Meins et al. highlight the state of the art in hybrid polymer/lipid vesicles, as advanced vesicular structures.

Until next time, we hope you enjoy this issue of Materials Today.

Read full text on ScienceDirect

DOI: 10.1016/j.mattod.2013.09.020