Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors


Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Assessing an object's consistency without touching it

© Richard Villey and Frédéric Restagno Close up of the Pyrex sphere and Pyrex plane on which the nanometric scale elastic film is deposited. The small drop of liquid that serves as a probe is visible.
© Richard Villey and Frédéric Restagno

Close up of the Pyrex sphere and Pyrex plane on which the nanometric scale elastic film is deposited. The small drop of liquid that serves as a probe is visible.

Abstract:
Two teams of researchers have succeeded in evaluating the rigidity of a material … without touching it! To achieve this feat, physicists from the Laboratoire de Physique de la Matière Condensée et des Nanostructures (CNRS / Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1) and the Laboratoire de Physique des Solides (Université Paris-Sud / CNRS) placed a liquid-where they created a very weak, nanometric scale flow-between the probed object and the "tester". This technique, derived from the latest advances in nano-mechanics, has the advantage of being non-invasive and therefore non-destructive and could significantly improve the testing and analysis of thin, fragile objects such as bubbles or cells. This work is published on-line on June 18, 2012 on the website of the journal Physical Review Letters.

Assessing an object's consistency without touching it

Paris, France | Posted on June 27th, 2012

A simple way of determining whether a body is hard or soft is to touch it with a harder object. The problem with this technique is that it can destroy the item, especially if it is extremely fragile like a bubble or a living cell. Developing a less invasive alternative was therefore vital. To assess the rigidity of an object without touching it, the team of physicists had envisaged blowing on it delicately to check whether this flow of air deformed the material or not. But precisely controlling a flow of air is difficult on account of the vortexes that can form in the air. Hence the idea of using an easier-to-control "nano-flow" of fluid instead.

The researchers tested their technique on a thin elastomer (rubber) film, only several hundreds of nanometers (1) thick. In concrete terms, they placed the film on a rigid glass support and immersed the lot in a mixture of water and glycerol. They then created a very slight displacement of the liquid, near to the film. To generate this nano-flow, the physicists, and more particularly Samuel Leroy who was then working on his PhD at LPMCN (2), had to use a special device, developed in 2000 in the same laboratory (3). It comprises in particular a millimetric Pyrex (special glass) sphere, attached to a rod, which can be finely moved with what is known as a "piezoelectric ceramic" system. It is precisely this tiny glass bead that allows a nano-flow to be created at the surface of an object.

When the sphere comes up very close to the material (0.000001 meters), it pushes the liquid towards the object. This nano-flow generates a very slight pressure on the surface of the material. This force deforms the film very slightly, if it is flexible. On the other hand, if the tested object is completely rigid, the film remains unchanged.

The two teams also discovered that their method can be used to measure the rigidity of an array of bubbles, an element so fragile that touching it would mean destroying it! It is the first time that the possibility of measuring the elastic properties of an object using a nano-flow of fluid has been demonstrated. This initial work opens the way to a new nanometric-scale imaging technique for observing the elastic properties of very thin or thicker objects.

Notes:
(1) 1 nm = 0.000000001 m
(2) Laboratoire de Physique de la Matière Condensée et des Nanostructures (CNRS / Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1)
(3) Apparatus developed during the PhD work of Frédéric Restagno, under the supervision of Elisabeth Charlaix, currently working at the Laboratoire Interdisciplinaire de Physique (CNRS / Université Grenoble 1)

####

Contacts:
Julien Guillaume
+ 33 1 44 96 51 51


CNRS researcher
Frédéric Restagno
T +33 (0)1 69 15 70 78


Elisabeth Charlaix
T +33 (0)4 76 51 49 63


CNRS press officer
Priscilla Dacher
T +33 (0)1 44 96 46 06 l

Copyright © AlphaGalileo

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

A drop of water as a model for the interplay of adhesion and stiction June 30th, 2016

No need in supercomputers: Russian scientists suggest a PC to solve complex problems tens of times faster than with massive supercomputers June 30th, 2016

Surprising qualities of insulator ring surfaces: Surface phenomena in ring-shaped topological insulators are just as controllable as those in spheres made of the same material June 30th, 2016

How cancer cells spread and squeeze through tiny blood vessels (video) June 30th, 2016

Physics

A drop of water as a model for the interplay of adhesion and stiction June 30th, 2016

Discoveries

A drop of water as a model for the interplay of adhesion and stiction June 30th, 2016

No need in supercomputers: Russian scientists suggest a PC to solve complex problems tens of times faster than with massive supercomputers June 30th, 2016

Surprising qualities of insulator ring surfaces: Surface phenomena in ring-shaped topological insulators are just as controllable as those in spheres made of the same material June 30th, 2016

How cancer cells spread and squeeze through tiny blood vessels (video) June 30th, 2016

Announcements

A drop of water as a model for the interplay of adhesion and stiction June 30th, 2016

No need in supercomputers: Russian scientists suggest a PC to solve complex problems tens of times faster than with massive supercomputers June 30th, 2016

Surprising qualities of insulator ring surfaces: Surface phenomena in ring-shaped topological insulators are just as controllable as those in spheres made of the same material June 30th, 2016

How cancer cells spread and squeeze through tiny blood vessels (video) June 30th, 2016

Battery Technology/Capacitors/Generators/Piezoelectrics/Thermoelectrics/Energy storage

Texas A&M Chemist Says Trapped Electrons To Blame For Lack Of Battery Efficiency: Forget mousetraps — today’s scientists will get the cheese if they manage to build a better battery June 28th, 2016

Yale researchers’ technology turns wasted heat into power June 27th, 2016

Stanford researchers find new ways to make clean hydrogen and rechargable zinc batteries June 18th, 2016

Efficient hydrogen production made easy: Sticking electrons to a semiconductor with hydrazine creates an electrocatalyst June 17th, 2016

Research partnerships

Superheroes are real: Ultrasensitive nonlinear metamaterials for data transfer June 25th, 2016

Soft decoupling of organic molecules on metal June 23rd, 2016

FEI and University of Liverpool Announce QEMSCAN Research Initiative: University of Liverpool will utilize FEI’s QEMSCAN technology to gain a better insight into oil and gas reserves & potentially change the approach to evaluating them June 22nd, 2016

Tailored DNA shifts electrons into the 'fast lane': DNA nanowire improved by altering sequences June 22nd, 2016

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