Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > How many argon atoms can fit on the surface of a carbon nanotube?

Abstract:
Scientists have devised a new way to explore how such phase transitions function in less than three dimensions and at the level of just a few atoms.

How many argon atoms can fit on the surface of a carbon nanotube?

Seattle, WA | Posted on January 30th, 2010

Phase transitions -- changes of matter from one state to another without altering its chemical makeup -- are an important part of life in our three-dimensional world. Water falls to the ground as snow, melts to a liquid and eventually vaporizes back to the clouds to begin the cycle anew.

Now a team of scientists has devised a new way to explore how such phase transitions function in less than three dimensions and at the level of just a few atoms. They hope the technique will be useful to test aspects of what until now has been purely theoretical physics, and they hope it also might have practical applications for sensing conditions at very tiny scales, such as in a cell membrane.

They worked with single-walled carbon nanotubes, extremely thin, hollow graphite structures that can be so tiny that they are nearly one-dimensional, to study the phase transition behavior of argon and krypton atoms.

"The physics can be quite different in fewer than three dimensions," said David Cobden, an associate professor of physics at the University of Washington and corresponding author of a paper describing the work published Friday (Jan. 29) in Science.

Co-authors, all from the UW, are Zenghui Wang, Jiang Wei, Peter Morse, J. Gregory Dash and Oscar Vilches.

For their observations, the group used carbon nanotubes, microscopic cylinders that have some thickness but are very close to being one-dimensional.

Phase transitions change the density of atoms. In the vapor form, there are fewer atoms and they are loosely packed. Liquid has more atoms and they are more tightly packed. The solid is a crystal formed of very tightly packed atoms. To determine the phase of the argon and krypton atoms, the researchers used the carbon nanotube much like a guitar string stretched over a fret. A nearby piece of conducting metal applied an electrical force to oscillate the string, and the scientists measured the current to "listen" as the vibration frequency changed -- a greater mass of atoms sticking to the nanotube surface produced a lower frequency.

"You listen to this nano guitar and as the pitch goes down you know there are more atoms sticking to the surface," Cobden said. "In principle you can hear one atom landing on the tube -- it's that sensitive."

The researchers also found that the nanotube's electrical resistance changed when krypton atoms stuck to the surface.

In the future, the scientists hope to be able to see how the atoms, as they populate the carbon nanotube, react to each other through various phase transitions, and also how they interact with the pure carbon graphite of the nanotube. They expect to see some significant differences in experiments approaching one dimension from those in two or three dimensions.

"For example, matter can freeze in 3-D and in 2-D, but theoretically it should not freeze in 1-D," Cobden said.

Besides providing a test bed for physics theories, the work also could be useful for sensing applications, such as nanoscale measurements in various fluid environments, examining functions within cell membranes or probing within nerves.

"Nanotubes allow you to probe things at the subcellular level," Cobden said.

The work was funded by the National Science Foundation, the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund, the UW Royalty Research Fund and the UW University Initiatives Fund.

####

About University of Washington
Founded in 1861, the University of Washington is one of the oldest state-supported institutions of higher education on the West Coast and is one of the preeminent research universities in the world.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
David Cobden
206-372-2456
206-543-2686

Copyright © University of Washington

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

New material science research may advance tech tools August 31st, 2015

Efficiency of Nanodrug Containing Antibiotics in Treatment of Infectious Diseases Evaluated August 31st, 2015

Artificial leaf harnesses sunlight for efficient fuel production August 30th, 2015

Researchers use DNA 'clews' to shuttle CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool into cells August 30th, 2015

Physics

Seeing quantum motion August 30th, 2015

Draw out of the predicted interatomic force August 30th, 2015

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

An engineered surface unsticks sticky water droplets August 31st, 2015

New material science research may advance tech tools August 31st, 2015

Seeing quantum motion August 30th, 2015

Artificial leaf harnesses sunlight for efficient fuel production August 30th, 2015

Possible Futures

Sediment dwelling creatures at risk from nanoparticles in common household products August 13th, 2015

Harris & Harris Group Reports Financial Statements as of June 30, 2015, and Announces a Stock Repurchase Program August 10th, 2015

Molecular trick alters rules of attraction for non-magnetic metals August 5th, 2015

Global Carbon Nanotubes Industry 2015: Acute Market Reports August 4th, 2015

Nanotubes/Buckyballs/Fullerenes

Developing Component Scale Composites Using Nanocarbons August 26th, 2015

Southampton scientists find new way to detect ortho-para conversion in water August 25th, 2015

Revolutionary MIT-Developed Nanotechnology Company Showcases at CAMX in Dallas August 20th, 2015

Engineering a better 'Do: Purdue researchers are learning how August 4th, 2015

Nanomedicine

Efficiency of Nanodrug Containing Antibiotics in Treatment of Infectious Diseases Evaluated August 31st, 2015

Researchers use DNA 'clews' to shuttle CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool into cells August 30th, 2015

Iranian Scientists Use Artemisia Annua Plant to Produce Breast Cancer Drugs August 29th, 2015

Small but heading for the big time: Nanobiotix half year results for the six months ended 30 June 2015, in line with expectations: Major clinical achievements and corporate developments August 28th, 2015

Sensors

Successful boron-doping of graphene nanoribbon August 27th, 2015

Nanotechnology that will impact the Security & Defense sectors to be discussed at NanoSD2015 conference August 25th, 2015

High Precision, High Stability XYZ Microscope Stages, with Capacitive Feedback August 18th, 2015

Setting ground rules for nanotechnology research: Two new projects set the stage for nanotechnology research to move into Big Data August 18th, 2015

Discoveries

An engineered surface unsticks sticky water droplets August 31st, 2015

New material science research may advance tech tools August 31st, 2015

Efficiency of Nanodrug Containing Antibiotics in Treatment of Infectious Diseases Evaluated August 31st, 2015

Researchers use DNA 'clews' to shuttle CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool into cells August 30th, 2015

Announcements

An engineered surface unsticks sticky water droplets August 31st, 2015

New material science research may advance tech tools August 31st, 2015

Efficiency of Nanodrug Containing Antibiotics in Treatment of Infectious Diseases Evaluated August 31st, 2015

Researchers use DNA 'clews' to shuttle CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool into cells August 30th, 2015

Nanobiotechnology

Researchers use DNA 'clews' to shuttle CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool into cells August 30th, 2015

Small but heading for the big time: Nanobiotix half year results for the six months ended 30 June 2015, in line with expectations: Major clinical achievements and corporate developments August 28th, 2015

Nanotechnology that will impact the Security & Defense sectors to be discussed at NanoSD2015 conference August 25th, 2015

Louisiana Tech University researchers discover synthesis of a new nanomaterial: Interdisciplinary team creates biocomposite for first time using physiological conditions August 24th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







Car Brands
Buy website traffic