David Kirkpatrick

September 18, 2009

Data storage breakthrough

Via KurzweilAI.net — A three-fer from today’s newsletter.

Super-dense data stores cool down

New Scientist Tech, Sept. 17, 2009

A material that could allow super-dense (125 gigabytes per square inch) “millipede”-style data storage systems to work at room temperature (and thus be a viable commercial product) has been developed by researchers at Pohang University of Science and Technology in Kyungbuk, Korea.

The system uses a “baroplastic” — a hard polymer that becomes soft when placed under pressure — and the tip of an atomic force microscope (AFM) to etch the kind of tiny pits that store data.

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August 28, 2009

Atomic scale image of pentacene

Filed under: Science, Technology — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:54 pm

I’m just going to say wow. You can actually make out the five carbon atoms.

This image of pentacene, a molecule
made up of five carbon rings, was
made using an atomic-force
microscope. Credit: Science/AAAS

From the link:

Using an atomic-force microscope, scientists at IBM Research in Zurich have for the first time made an atomic-scale resolution image of a single molecule, the hydrocarbon pentacene.

Atomic-force microscopy works by scanning a surface with a tiny cantilever whose tip comes to a sharp nanoscale point. As it scans, the cantilever bounces up and down, and data from these movements is compiled to generate a picture of that surface. These microscopes can be used to “see” features much smaller than those visible under light microscopes, whose resolution is limited by the properties of light itself. Atomic-force microscopy literally has atom-scale resolution.