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July 8th, 2010
Some people relax by doing crossword puzzles, watching movies or reading a good book. In his down time, often while flying somewhere, Energy Secretary Steven Chu relaxes by tackling a scientific conundrum and stretching the limits of technology.
The result: Chu has a dense research paper being published online Wednesday in the prestigious scientific journal Nature. The title: "Subnanometre single-molecule localization registration and distance measurements."
Chu's scientific colleagues call his study a major advancement in how tiny an object optical microscopes can see. Instead of objects measuring 10 nanometers - thought to be the about the smallest scientists could see using such microscopes - Chu came up with a system using existing technology to see objects, such as molecules and parts of cells, as small as half a nanometer.
The Associated Press
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