Physicists photographed for the first time individual atoms floating in liquids

Physicists photographed for the first time individual atoms floating in liquids

Scientists have used an e-lighting microscope to visualize individual atoms. This is not the first time that this technology has been used to visualize atom-scale objects, but it requires a vacuum for observation. In their work published in Nature magazine, physicists have used leak-proof graphene capsules to avoid distortions caused by vacuum.

To observe the interaction between liquids and solid bodies, scientists used a double graphene liquid cell consisting of a central molybdenum disulphide, separated by hexagonal gaskets from two surrounding graphene windows, using which they were able to observe the movement of the adatoms of platinum in salt solution.

By analysing the motion of the atoms in the video and comparing them with theoretical calculations, researchers were able to understand the effect of the fluid on the behavior of the atoms, and found that the liquid accelerated the movement of the atoms and also changed their preferred resting places over the lower solid body.

Researchers explain that when the solid surface is in contact with the liquid, both substances change their configuration in response to each other ' s proximity; these interactions at the atomic scale at the solid and liquid phases are used in batteries and fuel cells to produce clean electricity, as well as in determining the efficiency of clean water production and are at the heart of many biological processes.

Researchers used their method to study material that could be used for the production of green hydrogen, but the technology is universal and can be used in various applications.

Image on the cover: The University of Manchester