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 Graphene bubbles mimic explosive magnetic field

This story is from the category Computing Power
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Date posted: 01/08/2010

Electronics engineers would love to play with super-powerful magnetic fields ? if only they weren't so likely to cause explosions. Now it turns out that graphene can mimic the useful effects of such a magnetic field, offering a new way to control the super-material's remarkable electronic properties.

Graphene is a single layer of carbon atoms arranged in a chicken-wire-like hexagonal lattice. It was first isolated in 2004. In the years since, enough has been learned about its electronic and mechanical properties to make it a strong contender for replacing silicon-based semiconductors in future electronic devices.

But although graphene is an excellent conductor, controlling how electrons within the material behave ? vital for any electronic device ? remains a challenge.

Now Michael Crommie of the University of California, Berkeley, and colleagues have proved in an experiment what others have predicted: put graphene under a particular type of strain and it conjures up a strange quantum effect called a pseudomagnetic field that could be used to control its conductivity.

See the full Story via external site: www.newscientist.com



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