Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Relay race with single atoms: New ways of manipulating matter

Date:
January 9, 2012
Source:
Elhuyar Fundazioa
Summary:
A relay reaction of hydrogen atoms at a single-molecule level has been observed in real-space. This way of manipulating matter could open up new ways to exchange information between novel molecular devices in future electronics.

Illustration of the atom relay process.
Credit: H. Okuyama

Thanks to a collaboration between scientists in San Sebastian and Japan, a relay reaction of hydrogen atoms at a single-molecule level has been observed in real-space. This way of manipulating matter could open up new ways to exchange information between novel molecular devices in future electronics. Dr. Thomas Frederiksen, presently working in the Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC) is one of the scientists that has participated in this research project. The results have been published in the journal Nature Materials.

An athletic relay race is a competition where each member of a team sprints a short distance with the baton before passing it onwards to the next team member. This collective way of transporting something rapidly along a well-defined track is not only a human activity and invention -- a similar relay mechanism, often refered to as structural diffusion, exists at the atomic scale that facilitate transport of hydrogen atoms and protons in hydrogen bonded networks, such as liquid water, biological systems, functional compounds, etc. However, direct visualization of this important transfer process in these situations is extremely difficult because of the highly complex environments.

Scientists in San Sebastian and Japan discovered that the relay reaction also occurs in well-defined molecular chains assembled on a metal surface. This new setup allowed the researchers to gain insight into the relay reactions at the level of single atoms and visualize the process using a scanning tunneling microscope (STM). By sending a pulse of electrons through a water molecule at one end of the chain, hydrogen atoms propagate one by one along the chain like dominoes in motion.

The result is that a hydrogen atom has been transferred from one end to the other via the relay mechanism. The demonstrated control of the atom transfer along these molecular chains not only sheds new insight on a fundamental problem. It could also open up new ways to exchange information between novel molecular devices in future electronics by passing around hydrogen atoms.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. T. Kumagai, A. Shiotari, H. Okuyama, S. Hatta, T. Aruga, I. Hamada, T. Frederiksen, H. Ueba. H-atom relay reactions in real space. Nature Materials, 2011; DOI: 10.1038/NMAT3176

Cite This Page:

Elhuyar Fundazioa. "Relay race with single atoms: New ways of manipulating matter." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 January 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120104111725.htm>.
Elhuyar Fundazioa. (2012, January 9). Relay race with single atoms: New ways of manipulating matter. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120104111725.htm
Elhuyar Fundazioa. "Relay race with single atoms: New ways of manipulating matter." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120104111725.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) More and more studies are showing positive benefits to playing video games, but the jury is still out on brain training programs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 29, 2014) CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, celebrates 60 years of bringing nations together through science. As Joanna Partridge reports from inside the famous science centre it's also planning to turn the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator back on after an upgrade. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
This 'Invisibility Cloak' Is Simpler Than Most

This 'Invisibility Cloak' Is Simpler Than Most

Newsy (Sep. 28, 2014) Researchers from the University of Rochester have created a type of invisibility cloak with simple focal lenses. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Corvette Can Secretly Record Convos And Get You Arrested

New Corvette Can Secretly Record Convos And Get You Arrested

Newsy (Sep. 28, 2014) The 2015 Corvette features valet mode – which allows the owner to secretly record audio and video – but in many states that practice is illegal. Video provided by Newsy
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

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