Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

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Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby Daem0hn » Fri Mar 09, 2007 1:45 pm UTC

Fox News wrote:British-based scientists have created what they claim is the thinnest material in the world and predict that it will revolutionize computing and medical research.

A layer of carbon has been manufactured in a film only one atom thick that defies the laws of physics.

Placed in layers on top of each other, it would take 200,000 of these membranes to match the thickness of a human hair.

The substance, graphene, was created two years ago but could be made only when stuck to another material. Researchers at the University of Manchester , England, have now managed to manufacture it as a film suspended between the nanoscale bars of scaffolding made from gold.

Such a feat was held to be impossible by theorists, backed up by experimentation, because it is in effect a two-dimensional crystal that is supposed to be destroyed instantly by heat.

The crystalline membrane, comprising of carbon atoms formed into hexagonal groups to create a honeycomb pattern, is thought to be able to exist because rather than lying flat it undulates slightly.

Undulation provides the structure with a third dimension that gives it the strength to hold together, the researchers have reported in the journal Nature .

The graphene membrane has proved to be so stable that it holds together in vacuums and at room temperature. All other known materials oxidize, decompose and become unstable at sizes ten times the thickness.

.....see source


Source

thats pretty darn cool, i wonder how strong and flexible the material is, the source mentions application in computing and medicine, however given the relative strength of most nanoscale materials, i can also see application in ultra-light body armour.

Anyway, thought it was interesting so figured i'd post it here!
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Postby Nomic » Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:05 pm UTC

If they could make some form of rigid material out of it, they could make really sharp obects too. Monomolecular blade ftw!

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Postby Daem0hn » Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:13 pm UTC

that would give an awesome shave! i hate shaving, i'm one of those 'lucky' because its manly, 'unlucky' because its a pain in the ass to shave, guys who shave when they wake up, and get the 3:00 shadow happening. Too bad i am way to young to consider growing a beard. Goatee will have to do.


this discovery reminds me of the 'solar sail' concept that was floating around a while back, scientists trying to make ultra light weight sails that were propelled by the force generated by the impact of photons. being such a light and supposedly resistant material it could become quite useful in this area

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Postby VannA » Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:52 pm UTC

Daem0hn wrote:that would give an awesome shave! i hate shaving, i'm one of those 'lucky' because its manly, 'unlucky' because its a pain in the ass to shave, guys who shave when they wake up, and get the 3:00 shadow happening. Too bad i am way to young to consider growing a beard. Goatee will have to do.


this discovery reminds me of the 'solar sail' concept that was floating around a while back, scientists trying to make ultra light weight sails that were propelled by the force generated by the impact of photons. being such a light and supposedly resistant material it could become quite useful in this area

Wiki


Shaving with a monomolecular blade is likely to be highly terminal.

You have no hope, at all, of seeing the blade. You *might* see a haze free atoms as it splits other molecules into bits. Maybe some ionic activity around it.


Solar Sails are interesting.. but too easy to destroy, I think.

As for this stuff? Curious. How much rigidity does it retain if you create a tube with it? How much integrity, and what can you pipe down said tube?
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Postby Daem0hn » Fri Mar 09, 2007 3:03 pm UTC

i did an option unit in nanotech two years ago, we learned about carbon nanotubes, i have since forgotten most of it, hence my quoting half the wiki article. Carbon nanotubes are effectively the carbon 'sheet' from the news article in the OP rolled up into a tube. Very strong.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_nanotube

wikipedia wrote:Carbon nanotubes are one of the strongest and stiffest materials known, in terms of tensile strength and elastic modulus respectively. This strength results from the covalent sp2 bonds formed between the individual carbon atoms. In 2000, a multi-walled carbon nanotube was tested to have a tensile strength of 63 GPa.[22] In comparison, high-carbon steel has a tensile strength of approximately 1.2 GPa. CNTs have very high elastic modulus, on the order of 1 TPa.[23] Since carbon nanotubes have a low density for a solid of 1.3-1.4 g/cm³[24], its specific strength of up to 48,462 kN·m/kg is the best of known materials, compared to high-carbon steel's 154 kN·m/kg.

Under excessive tensile strain, the tubes will undergo plastic deformation, which means the deformation is permanent. This deformation begins at strains of approximately 5% [25] and can increase the maximum strain the tube undergoes before fracture by releasing strain energy.

CNTs are not nearly as strong under compression. Because of their hollow structure and high aspect ratio, they tend to undergo buckling when placed under compressive, torsional or bending stress.


personally i find their electrical properties (see wiki link) very interesting, although that is probably because i am studying electronic engineering :P

wiki wrote:Usage in electrical circuits

Carbon nanotubes have many properties—from their unique dimensions to an unusual current conduction mechanism—that make them ideal components of electrical circuits.

Nanotube based transistors have been made that operate at room temperature and that are capable of digital switching using a single electron. [60]

One major obstacle to realization of nanotubes has been the lack of technology for mass production. However, in 2001 IBM researchers demonstrated how nanotube transistors can be grown in bulk, not very different from silicon transistors. The process they used is called "constructive destruction" which includes the automatic destruction of defective nanotubes on the wafer.[61]

This has since then been developed further and single-chip wafers with over ten billion correctly aligned nanotube junctions have been created. In addition it has been demonstrated that incorrectly aligned nanotubes can be removed automatically using standard lithography equipment.[62]

The first nanotube made integrated memory circuit was made in 2004. One of the main challenges have been regulating the conductivity of nanotubes. Depending on subtle surface features a nanotube may act as a plain conductor or as a semiconductor. A fully automated method has however been developed to remove non-semiconductor tubes


with reference to the bolded statement above: Awesome.
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Postby SpitValve » Fri Mar 09, 2007 7:55 pm UTC

Daem0hn wrote:i did an option unit in nanotech two years ago, we learned about carbon nanotubes, i have since forgotten most of it, hence my quoting half the wiki article. Carbon nanotubes are effectively the carbon 'sheet' from the news article in the OP rolled up into a tube. Very strong.


Note it says strong under strain, but weak under compression. So they're very strong if you're pushing along the edges of the nanotube, but they deform when you try to squish them.

I'm guessing here, but a blade of graphene would likely be getting squished if it his your skin? Plus it's still sorta unstable... just less unstable than other things :)

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Postby LSK » Fri Mar 09, 2007 9:15 pm UTC

Just regarding the topic title: We know, it's called an "atom".

First thing that came to mind when seeing the thread.

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Postby fjafjan » Sat Mar 10, 2007 1:53 am UTC

I simply do not trust Fox nomatter what issue it is, and that's the way it goes.
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Postby Fluff » Sat Mar 10, 2007 6:08 am UTC

fjafjan wrote:I simply do not trust Fox nomatter what issue it is, and that's the way it goes.


Seconded.

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Postby Gelsamel » Sat Mar 10, 2007 7:51 am UTC

Does does 1 Atom thick sheet = 2d?

The depth is not 0.

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Postby hyperion » Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:03 am UTC

Gelsamel wrote:Does does 1 Atom thick sheet = 2d?

The depth is not 0.
it's still 4d since it requires 4 co-ordinates to locate it in the universe (i think)
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Postby Gelsamel » Sat Mar 10, 2007 12:10 pm UTC

Funny, I thought I typed it right, but what I meant to say is "How does 1 atom thick sheet = 2d? The depth is not 0".


And it's 3d.

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Postby hyperion » Sat Mar 10, 2007 1:26 pm UTC

Gelsamel wrote:Funny, I thought I typed it right, but what I meant to say is "How does 1 atom thick sheet = 2d? The depth is not 0".


And it's 3d.
the depth would be approximately 67*10^-11 metres according to wikipedia.

and it's 4d because of time
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Postby Gelsamel » Sat Mar 10, 2007 1:50 pm UTC

When you're talking about spatial dimensions, 4th dimensional objects are like Hypercubes.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4th_Dimension

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Postby Jack Saladin » Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:52 pm UTC

I've never been able to get the whole 4th dimension thing. Don't suppose anyone has a dumbed down explanation?

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Postby warriorness » Sun Mar 11, 2007 4:11 am UTC

Saladin wrote:I've never been able to get the whole 4th dimension thing. Don't suppose anyone has a dumbed down explanation?


Imagine a two-dimensional universe. The inhabitants could never grasp the fact that there's "up" and "down" - only four cardinal directions. Same with us and a fourth spatial dimension. Now imagine a three-dimensional sphere protruding into the 2D world - all they see is a circle. But there is more to it - as you moved the sphere through their universe, the size of the cross-section they perceived would change. Now imagine what we would see if a 4D "ball" (in topology, an object where all points are equidistant from the center) intersecting our 3D universe: a sphere. And supposing that "ball" moved through our universe, we'd see it change in dimensions as well.
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Postby Code J » Sun Mar 11, 2007 4:48 am UTC

Ok, I can understand that, but how does time and duration play into that? I suppose time could be the thing that we don't see (i.e. the 2nd dimensioners don't see depth), but what about ana/kata?

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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby headprogrammingczar » Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:14 am UTC

First, I know the book you are referencing. To actually answer the question, you must first try to remember all you can of conic sections. To determine what a shape would look like in a smaller number of dimensions, imagine the object as a 4D shape (I say imagine as pretending you know the mathematical definition of that shape). Then imagine a 3D conic cross-section. You only "see" the intersection of the shape and the dividing ?X? (whatever describes a 3D equivalent of a plane). In regards to transformations in this extra dimension, imagine the cross-section as stationary, then imagine moving or rotating the object in the 4th dimension.
It is difficult to explain a concept that has no concrete example, but this should at least help you visualize it.

On topic, single-electron transistors are an electrical engineer's dream.
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby lowbart » Wed Mar 26, 2008 2:45 am UTC

I am always surprised when people refer to The Boy Who Reversed Himself. I keep thinking that there can't be that many people that know about it.
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby joeframbach » Wed Mar 26, 2008 2:58 am UTC

lowbart wrote:I am always surprised when people refer to The Boy Who Reversed Himself. I keep thinking that there can't be that many people that know about it.

Is that the story about the kid who does a full rotation on a swingset and turns inside out? I remember reading that in elementary school.

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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby 4=5 » Wed Mar 26, 2008 3:14 am UTC

joeframbach wrote:
lowbart wrote:I am always surprised when people refer to The Boy Who Reversed Himself. I keep thinking that there can't be that many people that know about it.

Is that the story about the kid who does a full rotation on a swingset and turns inside out? I remember reading that in elementary school.

no and I remember reading it. bet they could make a ton of money off a ketchup selling business.

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Postby Solt » Wed Mar 26, 2008 4:21 am UTC

SpitValve wrote:Note it says strong under strain, but weak under compression. So they're very strong if you're pushing along the edges of the nanotube, but they deform when you try to squish them.


Not a big problem. Plenty of materials can only be used one way or the other. Concrete only works under compression. Carbon fiber only works under tension. And polymers are all over the place.


I'm tired of all these damn Carbon X discoveries. I'm waiting for a "you can now buy carbon nanotubes at the store" level discovery.
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby cypherspace » Wed Mar 26, 2008 4:22 am UTC

A layer of carbon has been manufactured in a film only one atom thick that defies the laws of physics.

No it fucking doesn't.
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby Zak » Wed Mar 26, 2008 4:52 am UTC

Well of course it doesn't defy the laws of physics. If it did, it wouldn't be able to exist!
*waggles eyebrows*

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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby Princess Marzipan » Wed Mar 26, 2008 5:25 am UTC

cypherspace wrote:
A layer of carbon has been manufactured in a film only one atom thick that defies the laws of physics.

No it fucking doesn't.


Hahahaha.

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Postby EsotericWombat » Wed Mar 26, 2008 9:43 pm UTC

Daem0hn wrote:this discovery reminds me of the 'solar sail' concept that was floating around a while back, scientists trying to make ultra light weight sails that were propelled by the force generated by the impact of photons. being such a light and supposedly resistant material it could become quite useful in this area Wiki


Randall actually blogged about this a few days ago. Check it out
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby opsomath » Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:01 am UTC

This is a pretty awesome trick, but considering that graphite is composed of sheets of this stuff more or less stacked on top of each other, (the 100,000 layers mentioned in the article) I am not predicting this stuff will revolutionize anything anytime soon.

Buckyballs and nanotubes, on the other hand, are amazing.

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Re: Re:

Postby hyperion » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:41 am UTC

EsotericWombat wrote:
Daem0hn wrote:this discovery reminds me of the 'solar sail' concept that was floating around a while back, scientists trying to make ultra light weight sails that were propelled by the force generated by the impact of photons. being such a light and supposedly resistant material it could become quite useful in this area Wiki


Randall actually blogged about this a few days ago. Check it out

This thread is over a year old. :wink:
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby EsotericWombat » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:56 am UTC

ouch
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby 22/7 » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:58 am UTC

Yeah, I couldn't figure out why it was necro....'ede either.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby dardy_7 » Thu Mar 27, 2008 11:15 am UTC

soon to be used in the new condoms
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby Arancaytar » Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:58 pm UTC

lowbart wrote:I am always surprised when people refer to The Boy Who Reversed Himself. I keep thinking that there can't be that many people that know about it.


Where was the reference? ana and kata were "coined" (Greek for up and down) by mathematician Charles Howard Hinton. Ironically I first read of them in the same book you're mentioning. ;)

If you meant the 2d universe, there are numerous books about it. Edwin A. Abbot's Flatland is famous, but so is A. Dewdney's The Planiverse.

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Monomolecular blades made me think of His Dark Materials immediately. Will this cut portals to other worlds? :)
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby pruwyben » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:14 pm UTC

cypherspace wrote:
A layer of carbon has been manufactured in a film only one atom thick that defies the laws of physics.

No it fucking doesn't.


For real. Stupid Fox.
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Re:

Postby oxoiron » Thu Mar 27, 2008 9:14 pm UTC

hyperion wrote:the depth would be approximately 67*10^-11 metres according to wikipedia.
That's a mere 7.1 E-35 hubbles (5.4 E-6 of a gnat's eye, if you prefer), according to onlineconversion.com, which may be even better than wikipedia for wasting time, especially for those of you who like measuring things in odd units.

I gave a presentation once in which I gave all the interatomic distances in either hubbles or gnat's eyes. My boss was not amused.
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby Lycur » Thu Mar 27, 2008 9:18 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:Yeah, I couldn't figure out why it was necro....'ede either.


There was recently an article in Scientific American about it. Coincidence? I think not!

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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby LilPixie » Fri Mar 28, 2008 4:25 am UTC

dardy_7 wrote:soon to be used in the new condoms

That... would be very inefficient. Would it not?

And horay new discoveries...
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Re: Scientists Develop 'Thinnest Material Ever,' One Atom Thick

Postby Zak » Fri Mar 28, 2008 6:36 am UTC

Scientists! Get to work on my subtle knife! Come on, chip-chop-chip!
*waggles eyebrows*

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Re:

Postby Bakemaster » Tue Apr 01, 2008 11:15 pm UTC

hyperion wrote:it's still 4d since it requires 4 co-ordinates to locate it in the universe (i think)

A point requires the same thing and is zero-dimensional.
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