Worlds most advanced microscope can probe the spaces between atoms

October 21st, 2008 - 4:44 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Oct 21 (ANI): The worlds most advanced microscope has been unveiled at the McMaster University in Canada, an instrument so powerful that it can probe the spaces between atoms.

The resolution of the Titan 80-300 Cubed microscope is remarkable, the equivalent of the Hubble Telescope looking at the atomic level instead of at stars and galaxies, said Gianluigi Botton, director of the Canadian Centre for Electron Microscopy, professor of Materials Science and Engineering, and the projects leader.

With this microscope, we can now easily identify atoms, measure their chemical state and even probe the electrons that bind them together, he added.

Because we are at the very limits of what physics allows us to see, even breathing close to a regular microscope could affect the quality of the results, said Botton.

The new microscope is housed in a stable, specially designed facility able to withstand ultralow vibrations, low noise, and minute temperature fluctuations.

Operation of the instrument will also be done from a separate room to ensure results of the highest quality.

Built in the Netherlands by the FEI Company at a cost of 15-million dollars, the Titan cluster will examine at the nano level hundreds of everyday products in order to understand, manipulate and improve their efficiency, according to John Preston, director of McMasters Brockhouse Institute for Materials Research.

The microscope will be used to help produce more efficient lighting and better solar cells, study proteins and drug-delivery materials to target cancers.

It will assess atmospheric particulates, and help create lighter and stronger automotive materials, more effective cosmetics, and higher density memory storage for faster electronic and telecommunication devices. (ANI)

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