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Guinness record: World's thinnest glass is just two atoms thick

Guinness record: World's thinnest glass is just two atoms thick | Materials Science | Scoop.it

At just a molecule thick, it's a new record: The world's thinnest sheet of glass, a serendipitous discovery by scientists at Cornell and Germany's University of Ulm, is recorded for posterity in the Guinness Book of World Records.

 

The "pane" of glass, so impossibly thin that its individual silicon and oxygen atoms are clearly visible via electron microscopy, was identified in the lab of David A. Muller, professor of applied and engineering physics and director of the Kavli Institute at Cornell for Nanoscale Science.

 

The work that describes direct imaging of this thin glass was first published in January 2012 in Nano Letters, and the Guinness records officials took note. The record will now be published in the Guinness World Records 2014 Edition.

 

Just two atoms in thickness, the glass was an accidental discovery, Muller said. The scientists had been making graphene, a two-dimensional sheet of carbon atoms in a chicken wire crystal formation, on copper foils in a quartz furnace. They noticed some "muck" on the graphene, and upon further inspection, found it to be composed of the elements of everyday glass, silicon and oxygen.

 

They concluded that an air leak had caused the copper to react with the quartz, also made of silicon and oxygen. This produced the glass layer on the would-be pure graphene.

 

Besides its sheer novelty, Muller said, the work answers an 80-year-old question about the fundamental structure of glass. Scientists, with no way to directly see it, had struggled to understand it: it behaves like a solid, but was thought to look more like a liquid. Now, the Cornell scientists have produced a picture of individual atoms of glass, and they found that it strikingly resembles a diagram drawn in 1932 by W.H. Zachariasen – a longstanding theoretical representation of the arrangement of atoms in glass.

 

"This is the work that, when I look back at my career, I will be most proud of," Muller said. "It's the first time that anyone has been able to see the arrangement of atoms in a glass."

 

What's more, two-dimensional glass could someday find a use in transistors, by providing a defect-free, ultra-thin material that could improve the performance of processors in computers and smartphones.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Graphene Frontiers to Develop Roll-to-Roll Graphene Production - AZoNano.com

Graphene Frontiers to Develop Roll-to-Roll Graphene Production - AZoNano.com | Materials Science | Scoop.it
AZoNano.com Graphene Frontiers to Develop Roll-to-Roll Graphene Production AZoNano.com A number of graphene manufacturing companies have appeared in the last few months - seeking to capitalize on the wave of investment and interest in the...
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If this could work with ultra-thin porous silicon as well.....

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3D printing 'entering the metal age'

3D printing 'entering the metal age' | Materials Science | Scoop.it
The European Space Agency has unveiled plans to "take 3D printing into the metal age" by building parts for jets, spacecraft and fusion reactors.
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This has got to be good

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"Sandwiched" graphene holds promise for thin-film solar cells - Gizmag

"Sandwiched" graphene holds promise for thin-film solar cells - Gizmag | Materials Science | Scoop.it
IEEE Spectrum "Sandwiched" graphene holds promise for thin-film solar cells Gizmag However, graphene is extremely thin, and since materials in electronics often have to be laid on top of each other with very little wiggle room, scientists have long...
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The graphene is about 0.3nm thick (one atom layer)

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Self-healing materials could arise from finding that tension can fuse metal - Science Daily (press release)

Self-healing materials could arise from finding that tension can fuse metal - Science Daily (press release) | Materials Science | Scoop.it
Self-healing materials could arise from finding that tension can fuse metal Science Daily (press release) The answer turned out to lie in how grain boundaries interact with cracks in the crystalline microstructure of a metal -- in this case nickel,...
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Unexpected observation in a microscopic environment

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Guinness record: World's thinnest glass is just two atoms thick

Guinness record: World's thinnest glass is just two atoms thick | Materials Science | Scoop.it

At just a molecule thick, it's a new record: The world's thinnest sheet of glass, a serendipitous discovery by scientists at Cornell and Germany's University of Ulm, is recorded for posterity in the Guinness Book of World Records.

 

The "pane" of glass, so impossibly thin that its individual silicon and oxygen atoms are clearly visible via electron microscopy, was identified in the lab of David A. Muller, professor of applied and engineering physics and director of the Kavli Institute at Cornell for Nanoscale Science.

 

The work that describes direct imaging of this thin glass was first published in January 2012 in Nano Letters, and the Guinness records officials took note. The record will now be published in the Guinness World Records 2014 Edition.

 

Just two atoms in thickness, the glass was an accidental discovery, Muller said. The scientists had been making graphene, a two-dimensional sheet of carbon atoms in a chicken wire crystal formation, on copper foils in a quartz furnace. They noticed some "muck" on the graphene, and upon further inspection, found it to be composed of the elements of everyday glass, silicon and oxygen.

 

They concluded that an air leak had caused the copper to react with the quartz, also made of silicon and oxygen. This produced the glass layer on the would-be pure graphene.

 

Besides its sheer novelty, Muller said, the work answers an 80-year-old question about the fundamental structure of glass. Scientists, with no way to directly see it, had struggled to understand it: it behaves like a solid, but was thought to look more like a liquid. Now, the Cornell scientists have produced a picture of individual atoms of glass, and they found that it strikingly resembles a diagram drawn in 1932 by W.H. Zachariasen – a longstanding theoretical representation of the arrangement of atoms in glass.

 

"This is the work that, when I look back at my career, I will be most proud of," Muller said. "It's the first time that anyone has been able to see the arrangement of atoms in a glass."

 

What's more, two-dimensional glass could someday find a use in transistors, by providing a defect-free, ultra-thin material that could improve the performance of processors in computers and smartphones.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Wonderful story this..

 

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Researchers Discover Giant Refractive Index in Graphene Oxide ...

Researchers Discover Giant Refractive Index in Graphene Oxide ... | Materials Science | Scoop.it
Discovery promises to revolutionize industries including optical data storage, photovoltaics and flat-screen displays.
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Looks  like a good site

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'White graphene' halts rust in high temps - Phys.org

'White graphene' halts rust in high temps - Phys.org | Materials Science | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —Atomically thin sheets of hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) have the handy benefit of protecting what's underneath from oxidizing even at very high temperatures, Rice University researchers have discovered.
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Ultra-thin coating - one atom layer thick.

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How to make ceramics that bend without breaking - HispanicBusiness.com

How to make ceramics that bend without breaking HispanicBusiness.com Then, the researchers concentrated on making the individual crystal grains span the entire small-scale structure, removing the crystal-grain boundaries where cracks are most...
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Getting ceramics to be tough at high temperatures should lead to a new class of materials.

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