DailyDirt: Cool Advances In Atomic-Scale Imaging

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

You're thirsty. You get yourself a glass of water. But have you ever wondered how many molecules of dihydrogen monoxide are in that glass of water? (There are around 8.35 x 1024 molecules in an 8-ounce glass of water, in case you're curious.) And how cool would it be if you could actually see those tiny little molecules dancing around in that glass? While that's still a challenge, researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have managed to produce the first ever "action movies" showing individual water molecules moving across a palladium surface using a special scanning tunneling microscope. Here are a few more examples of some cool atomic-scale imaging breakthroughs. If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.


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  1.  
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    Rekrul, Jun 5th, 2013 @ 8:52pm

    IBM researchers have created a short animated movie called A Boy and his Atom.

    Remember way back in 1989 when IBM arranged individual atoms to spell out "IBM" and took a photo of it? Yeah, that was going to "revolutionize" nanotechnology, allowing things like microscopic robots and multi-terabyte hard drives the size of postage stamps.

    Did I blink and miss these breakthroughs?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 5th, 2013 @ 10:47pm

    Re: IBM researchers have created a short animated movie called A Boy and his Atom.

    Are you saying that the ability to manipulate atoms hasn't lead to anything useful? Maybe not commercialized products, but these atomic scale capabilities could lead to commercial products someday -- it's just still too expensive to spell out data in atoms vs using a flash drive......

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
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    Slayn82, Jun 6th, 2013 @ 4:53am

    Re: Re: IBM researchers have created a short animated movie called A Boy and his Atom.

    Anyway, we already have developed ways to encode data in DNA that would beat your multi - terabyte hard drives. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130123133432.htm

    Now, we are developing the microscopic robots all right. Trouble is discovering how to design them effectively.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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