Istituto Lombardo - Accademia di Scienze e Lettere - Rendiconti di Scienze 2020-04-01T10:33:08+00:00 A. Bianchi Open Journal Systems Rendiconti di Scienze STORIA DELLA LUCE: DAL SOLE AL LASER 2020-03-31T21:04:10+00:00 Vittorio Degiorgio <p>The new sources of light (laser and led) that have been invented and developed during the last fifty-sixty years have given origin to a true scientific and technological revolution. This article synthetically follows the main steps of the history of light, which started by studying the properties of solar emission, and introducing the concept of electromagnetic wave. At the end of the 19<sup>th</sup> century there was experimental evidence that it was necessary to complicate the approach by introducing the assumption that the electromagnetic energy is a discrete, and not continuous, quantity. The new concept led to design and realization of the laser and the led. Through the utilization of these sources fundamental progress was achieved in both science and technology, by&nbsp;deepening the description of wave-particle dualism and of the coherence concept, by putting on a completely new basis information and communication technology, and by giving new tools to industrial and biomedical sensing.</p> 2020-03-26T08:11:49+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## TRASPORTO DI CALORE ATTRAVERSO UN’INTERFACCIA: UN PROBLEMA CLASSICO RIVISITATO IN CHIAVE MODERNA 2020-03-31T21:04:09+00:00 Luciano Colombo <p>I describe a set of computational experiments using molecular dynamics simulations, showing that the interface between two solid materials can be described as an autonomous thermodynamical system. By making use of the Gibbs description for such an interface, I discuss a robust nonequilibrium thermodynamics theoretical framework providing information about its corresponding thermal boundary resistance. In particular, I show that the termal resistance of a junction between two pure solid materials can be regarded as an interface property, depending solely on the interface temperature.</p> 2020-03-26T08:15:25+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## NEW PLANT BREEDING TECHNOLOGIES FOR A SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE 2020-04-01T10:33:08+00:00 Martin Kater <p>Agriculture has a 10,000-year history. During this period, humans selected natural mutants that were found to be useful for cultivation and human consumption. However, the selected characteristics are not always favorable for the plants themselves, often compromising their ability to survive and adapt to the natural environment. In this way, cultivated plants have become dependent, for their survival, on man as man is dependent on plants to survive. The increase in agricultural production was notable during the green revolution and even afterwards new genetic knowledge made it possible to drastically increase food production. However, now with the rapid growth of the world population, the selection of new cultivars has become necessary, not only capable of producing more but also able to do so with less water, fertilizers, insecticides etc. Plants that are more resistant to biotic and abiotic stresses, which are increasingly frequent in a world where climate change is becoming a major challenge for the future. Studying the genomes of plants and the functions of their genes is the only way to accelerate the genetic improvement of plants while protecting the environment. A very important technology to try to solve these problems is "genome editing", using the&nbsp;CRISPR-Cas system. Unfortunately, in Europe the use of this new technology in agriculture has found it is not easy to apply not so much for scientific reasons but for political ideologies contrary to this type of innovation in agriculture.</p> 2020-04-01T10:33:08+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## TECNICHE PER MASCHERARE IL SAPORE AMARO DEI PRODOTTI FARMACEUTICI 2020-03-31T21:04:03+00:00 Elisabetta Brenna <p>The text describes the main techniques used in the pharmaceutical field to mask the bitter taste of active pharmaceutical ingredients and make the product more pleasant for oral intake by the patient.</p> 2020-03-27T12:48:03+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## UN METODO SPETTROSCOPICO PER LA QUANTIFICAZIONE DI FARMACI IN FLUIDI BIOLOGICI 2020-03-31T21:04:09+00:00 Paolo Maria Ossi, et al. (#) <p>An innovative spectroscopic technique to determine the drug concentration in biological fluids is discussed. We introduce the context of drugs with narrow therapeutic index in relation to epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease. We then recapitulate the essentials of Raman and enhanced Raman spectroscopy that makes use of a corrugated metallic surface. Optimizing the intensification of the spectroscopic signatures of a given analyte critically depends on the metal choice and on the fine details of the induced surface nanostructuring. We review the topic with emphasis on noble metal surfaces synthesized by pulsed laser ablation in inert gas at high pressure. The performance of optimized surfaces to determine the drug concentration in different fluids, including human blood, is discussed with reference to carbamazepine, an anti-epileptic drug widely adopted in Developing Countries and to apomorphine, a drug used to treat via subcutaneous injection patients with important manifestations of Parkinson’s disease.</p> 2020-03-26T08:21:29+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## THE NATURE OF SUPERCONDUCTING FLUCTUATIONS AND NEW ASPECTS IN HIGH Tc SUPERCONDUCTORS 2020-03-31T21:04:08+00:00 Alessandro Lascialfari Attilio Rigamonti <p>After a brief introduction to thermodynamical superconducting fluctuations, some experimental results in different systems are presented. Superconducting fluctuations were predicted and revealed in nanoparticles of conventional superconductors since late 60s. However, just in the last two decades phenomena related to an anomalous diamagnetism have been discovered in high-T<sub>c</sub> underdoped compounds, mainly by collecting the isothermal magnetization curves above the critical temperature T<sub>c</sub>. These experimental data can be interpreted in terms of fluctuations of the phase of the order parameter and a related theoretical model can explain the results in cuprates, pnictides and Fe-based materials. Such results, here presented together with preliminary data on a Ca-based high-T<sub>c</sub> system, allow one to extract a fundamental parameter, the upturn magnetic field above which the diamagnetic magnetization initiates to decrease on increasing the field. Its temperature dependence distinguishes among diamagnetic effects related to superconducting phase fluctuations and to analogous effects due to chemical inhomogenities.</p> 2020-03-26T08:28:03+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## STRATEGIE INNOVATIVE PER IL CONTROLLO DI ZANZARE, VETTORI DI ORGANISMI PATOGENI 2020-03-31T21:04:07+00:00 Giuliano Gasperi <p>Mosquitoes are the most dangerous insect species being the vectors of the pathogens causing the most widespread diseases as Malaria, Dengue fever, Chikungunya, West Nile fever, Yellow fever, Zika. Several species of the <em>Anopheles</em>, <em>Aedes</em> and <em>Culex</em> are responsable for millions of human infections causing hundreds of thousands of deaths per year. This causes dramatic socio-economic and health consequences, especially in developing countries. Harmful insects are controlled using chemical insecticides which cause insecticide resistance and environmental pollution, due to long term use. In the second half of the 20<sup>th</sup> century, new insect environmentally safe control stategies were been developed, based on the insect’s reproductive behaviour. Notably, the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) has been successfully applied against some dipteran pest species in several regions of the World. It drived several research efforts to increase our knowledge of the biology of the harmful species. SIT improvements have been also achieved with several molecular biology approaches and transgene technologies such as the innovative RIDL, cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI) and gene drive.</p> 2020-03-26T08:30:27+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## BRONI E CASALE MONFERRATO: DUE COMUNITÀ DI FRONTE ALL’AMIANTO TRA MEMORIA, RIMOZIONE E RICONOSCIMENTO DEL DANNO 2020-03-31T21:04:07+00:00 Bruno Ziglioli <p>The article compares the case of the Eternit cement-asbestos factory in Casale Monferrato to that of the Fibronit factory in Broni. The two towns were assailed by the drama of asbestos contamination, which will continue to affect workers and local inhabitants for a long time to come. In Casale, the memory of the factory and its consequences on the health of the inhabitants has taken the form of a concrete awareness, so much so that Casale has become an emblematic town on both national and international levels. However, the same cannot be said for Broni: here there has been a radical repression of the problem. This paper will demonstrate how tensions within the community open up a range of citizens’viewpoints, which span from a hyper-visualization of the problem – the factory as an omnipresent cause of all the evils of the city – to its complete removal from the urban horizon, making any kind of intervention on public authorities extremely difficult.</p> 2020-03-26T08:32:53+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## MARGHERITA D’AUSTRIA MUSICA E IDENTITÀ DI UNA PRINCIPESSA DEL RINASCIMENTO 2020-04-01T10:28:39+00:00 Vincenzo Borghetti <p>In this essay I concentrate on Margaret of Austria’s chansonnier, BrusBR 228, reflecting on the role of this manuscript in the construction and performance of Margaret’s identity as a princely reader and as a ruler. Following the path opened by recent studies on this manuscript, I propose an analysis of the chansonnier as a music book, that is, as an object constructed through the interaction of different communicative codes, pondering some elements particularly interesting for my perspective, such as the initial pages. On the basis of this analysis, I advance new hypotheses on the uses and meanings of BrusBR 228, as well as, more in general, on Margaret’s reading habits and their potential cultural meanings and ideological ends.</p> 2020-04-01T10:28:39+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## DALLE ESIGENZE ENERGETICHE SULLA TERRA ALL’ESPLORAZIONE DI MARTE PASSANDO PER I COLORI DELLA CAPPELLA SISTINA: PRESENTE E FUTURO DEL FOTOVOLTAICO E DEI COMBUSTIBILI SOLARI 2020-03-31T21:04:06+00:00 Alessandro Abbotto <p>The challenge of renewable energies has now come to a strategic step. While 80% of the energy still comes from fossil fuels, the role of renewable energies is in constant growth. The challenge of renewables is not only a technological transition, but also the indispensable response to the needs of the planet, from the incessant demographic growth to climatic emergencies and to the development of the poorest countries, and eventually to medium to long term challenges such as the colonization of Mars. Researchers are therefore committed to developing innovative, clean and efficient solutions to meet such challenge. In particular, organic dyes, organic molecules such as those founds in drugs or liquid crystals, represent key actors of one of the most fascinating chemistry frontiers to produce low cost and clean renewable energy. As the true <em>colors</em> of the Sistine Chapel frescoes, wanted by Michelangelo, have now emerged and visible to&nbsp;everyone, also in this field only specific <em>colored</em> dyes are able to address effectively the energy challenge. The scientist, especially the chemist, starting from the state of the art and innovation, is engaged in the design of new molecules owning the correct <em>colors</em>.</p> 2020-03-26T08:36:14+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## ESPLORANDO “FLATLANDIA”: DAL GRAFENE ALLA SCOPERTA DI NUOVI MATERIALI BI-DIMENSIONALI 2020-03-31T21:04:04+00:00 Francesco Tumino <p>The development of nanotechnology has encouraged the research of new nanomaterials for innovative applications. In 2004, the production and study of graphene — that is a single layer of carbon atoms — showed, for the first time, the extraordinary properties of this material and opened the way to the exploration of the so-called <em>two-dimensional</em> (2D) <em>materials</em>. Since then, several 2D materials have been produced and studied, revealing properties and behaviours, in general, very different from those of corresponding bulk materials. Research on 2D materials is nowadays one of the most active and promising fields of materials science, which is setting the basis for the development of novel technologies, such as in electronics, optoelectronics, energy and molecular sensing. In this paper, some important aspects of the study of 2D materials will be introduced — such as the synthesis methodologies and characterization techniques — and some of their properties will be shown, with the support of recent experimental results of <em>scanning tunneling microscopy</em> (STM) investigations.</p> 2020-03-26T08:47:02+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## LA RIVOLUZIONE DELLA CRIO-MICROSCOPIA ELETTRONICA NELLO STUDIO STRUTTURALE DI PROTEINE E ACIDI NUCLEICI 2020-03-31T21:04:05+00:00 Martino Bolognesi <p>Observing the fine details of molecular structures (<em>e.g.</em> in proteins and in nucleic acids) has been a central part of Structural Biology over the past 50 years. The recent advent of single particle cryo-electron microscopy brought a revolution in this field, that previously relied on X-ray crystallography and nuclear magnetic resonance. It is now possible to explore the structures of large subcellular assemblies, such as the ribosome, resolving details on the scale of amino acids and nucleotides, in favorable cases reaching the 2 Å resolution level.</p> 2020-03-26T08:43:06+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## A HOLISTIC APPROACH TO THE SPACE DEBRIS MITIGATION 2020-03-31T21:04:05+00:00 Alessandro Rossi <p>The space activities in almost every orbital regime are now jeopardized by the continuous growth of the space debris populations. To prevent the proliferation of the space debris in Earth orbit it is necessary to tackle the problem from dierent perspectives, exploiting the latest theoretical and experimental knowledge in dierent elds, such as astrodynamics, spacecraft engineering and legal studies, to address four main pillars: prevention, protection, mitigation and regulation. In this respect the European Community nanced a large H2020 project named ReDSHIFT whose goal is to nd passive means to mitigate the proliferation of space debris. A short summary of the project and of its main ndings is given in the paper, with particular emphasis on the more theoretical part, related to the simulation of long term evolutionary scenarios of the whole space debris environment and to the mapping of the Low Earth Orbit phase space, looking for passive dynamical de-orbiting solutions.</p> 2020-03-26T08:45:25+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement##