Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

'Impossible' Nanoscale Process Succeeds: Molecular Chain Reaction On Metal Surface Offers Potential For Information Storage

Date:
December 12, 2008
Source:
University of Pittsburgh
Summary:
People said it couldn't be done, but researchers have demonstrated a molecular chain reaction on a metal surface, a nanoscale process with sizable potential in areas from nanotechnology to developing information storage technology.

People said it couldn't be done, but researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and the U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) in Pittsburgh demonstrated a molecular chain reaction on a metal surface, a nanoscale process with sizable potential in areas from nanotechnology to developing information storage technology.

The researchers report in the Dec. 12 edition of Science that a single electron caused a self-perpetuating chain reaction that rearranged the bonds in 10 consecutive molecules positioned on a gold surface. As each molecule's original bond was broken by the reaction, the molecule rearranged itself to form a new molecule.

Study coauthor Kenneth Jordan, a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry in Pitt's School of Arts and Sciences and codirector of the University's Center for Simulation and Modeling, said that the ability to initiate molecular chain reactions and self-assembly has potential applications in information storage and in nanolithography, a process used in producing microchips and circuit boards.

Because the demonstrated reaction involved several molecules on a surface, it reframes researchers' understanding of surface-based chain reactions. "The conventional wisdom held that a surface reaction would fizzle soon after the electron was introduced," Jordan said. "Our work, however, shows that reactions on metal surfaces can be sustained over long distances."

Jordan and his colleagues worked with dimethyldisulfide molecules—two CH(3) methyl groups bonded by two adjoining sulfur atoms. The added electron split the bond between the sulfur atoms of one molecule, creating a highly reactive free radical that attacked the sulfur-sulfur bond of the neighboring molecule. The radical split the bond, resulting in a new molecule and a new radical that proceeded to the sulfur-sulfur bond of the next molecule. The process repeated itself through a series of molecules.

Jordan conducted the research with Peter Maksymovych, who received his PhD degree in physical chemistry from Pitt in 2007 and is now at the U.S. Department of Energy Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences; Dan C. Sorescu of NETL; and John T. Yates Jr., a former Pitt Mellon Professor of Chemistry and now at the University of Virginia. Maksymovych and Yates carried out the experiments and Jordan and Sorescu performed the supporting theoretical calculations.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Pittsburgh. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Pittsburgh. "'Impossible' Nanoscale Process Succeeds: Molecular Chain Reaction On Metal Surface Offers Potential For Information Storage." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081211141932.htm>.
University of Pittsburgh. (2008, December 12). 'Impossible' Nanoscale Process Succeeds: Molecular Chain Reaction On Metal Surface Offers Potential For Information Storage. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081211141932.htm
University of Pittsburgh. "'Impossible' Nanoscale Process Succeeds: Molecular Chain Reaction On Metal Surface Offers Potential For Information Storage." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081211141932.htm (accessed August 27, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 26, 2014) Qantas and Virgin say passengers can use their smartphones and tablets throughout flights after a regulator relaxed a ban on electronic devices during take-off and landing. As Hayley Platt reports the move comes as the two domestic rivals are expected to post annual net losses later this week. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 26, 2014) Huge waves generated by Hurricane Marie hit the Southern California coast. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) Chinese researchers have expanded on Cold War-era tech and are closer to building a submarine that could reach the speed of sound. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakingviews: India Coal Strained by Supreme Court Ruling

Breakingviews: India Coal Strained by Supreme Court Ruling

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 26, 2014) An acute coal shortage is likely to be aggravated as India's supreme court declared government coal allocations illegal, says Breakingviews' Peter Thal Larsen. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins