MIT Physicists Turned Pencil Lead Into Gold

MIT Physicists Turned Pencil Lead Into Gold
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It seems that the MIMT physicists are not wasting time. Check out the latest developments that they have been able to make below.

MIT physicists turn lead into gold!

Physicists at MIT have created a new material by stacking five ultrathin flakes of graphite in a specific order. This new material has three properties that natural graphite does not have.

“It is kind of like one-stop shopping,” says Long Ju, an assistant professor in the Department of Physics and leader of the work, which is reported in the Oct. 5 issue of Nature Nanotechnology. “Nature has plenty of surprises. In this case, we never realized that all of these interesting things are embedded in graphite.”

Further, he says, “It is very rare material to find materials that can host this many properties.”

Graphite is made up of graphene, which is a single layer of carbon atoms arranged in hexagons. This arrangement resembles a honeycomb structure.

Graphene has been the subject of intense research since it was first isolated about two decades ago.

Researchers, including a team at MIT, discovered about five years ago that stacking individual sheets of graphene and twisting them slightly can give new properties to the material, such as superconductivity and magnetism.

This discovery led to the birth of a new field of study called “twistronics”. In the current study, researchers found interesting properties in the material without any twisting at all, according to Ju, who is also affiliated with the Materials Research Laboratory.

In collaboration with his colleagues, Ju made a discovery that five layers of graphene arranged in a specific order can enable the electrons inside the material to interact with one another.

This interaction, known as electron correlation, is the key to unlocking new properties in the material. While bulk graphite and single sheets of graphene are good electrical conductors, pentalayer rhombohedral stacked graphene, the material Ju and his team isolated, is much more than that. Check out the original article in order to learn all the juicy details about this massive discovery.


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Rada Mateescu

Passionate about freedom, truth, humanity, and subjects from the science and health-related areas, Rada has been blogging for about ten years, and at Health Thoroughfare, she's covering the latest news on these niches.

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