IBM Researchers Manipulate Individual Atoms

February 22nd, 2008
Bill Lazorik

Researchers at IBM have discovered the exact amount of force necessary to move individual atoms. Previously scientists used a trial and error based method to get atoms to go in the right direction. Now researchers can figure out that it takes 210 piconewtons to move a cobalt atom on a platinum surface, but only 17 piconewtons on copper. The advancement will prove valuable to the development of faster computers and high-density data storage.

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