A molecule, photographed

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you, pictured for the first time ever, the “detailed chemical structure of a single molecule”:

pentacene_anatomy

Apparently, some IBM researchers in Zurich used an atomic force microscope (AFM) to create the image shown above. Their version is like a tuning fork: the fork is vibrated, and one of the tines is placed near a molecule. The amount of vibration recorded on the other tine is then recorded, and by carefully repeating the process, an image of the molecule is formed. While carbon nanotubes have been photographed before, this is the first time that the actual chemical bonds have been photographed.

Learn more here.

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