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[WIRED] Imaging Breakthrough: See Atomic Bonds Before and After Molecular Reaction

post #1 of 15
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Quote:
For the first time, scientists have visually captured a molecule at single-atom resolution in the act of rearranging its bonds. The images look startlingly similar to the stick diagrams in chemistry textbooks.

Until now, scientists were only able to infer molecular structures. Using atomic force microscopy, the individual atomic bonds — each a few ten-millionths of a millimeter long – that connect the carbon molecule’s 26 carbon and 14 hydrogen atoms are clearly visible. The results are reported online May 30 in Science.
post #2 of 15
wheee.gif
Edit: wait wouldn't something change because you're directly observing them or am I confusing this with quantum physics?
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Enkidu
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post #3 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunreeper View Post

wheee.gif
Edit: wait wouldn't something change because you're directly observing them or am I confusing this with quantum physics?

That applies mainly to motion of particles and what not i.e. trying to directly calculate the velocity of a particle or something of the sort. I don't think it would affect the bonding (don't quote me on that though haha).
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post #4 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunreeper View Post

wheee.gif
Edit: wait wouldn't something change because you're directly observing them or am I confusing this with quantum physics?

By what they're saying about how the microscope works, you're not seeing the electrons themselves, but the repulsion caused by their forces.

This is the best I can do to answer your question, maybe someone else has got more insight.
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post #5 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunreeper View Post

wheee.gif
Edit: wait wouldn't something change because you're directly observing them or am I confusing this with quantum physics?

Molecular conformation is not related to quantum physics in this way. The quick and dirty explanation is that bonding is determined by ΔG, entropy, and orientation. It is impressive how faithful the line drawing convention we use is to reality.
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post #6 of 15
i only see blank white pages am i missing something?
post #7 of 15
There is something intrinsically amazing in this. Not sure if anybody has put this together, but the fact that we've been using the standard molecular model for over 150 years to predict what molecules probably look like and how they bond and that these models look identical to the real thing is simply mind blowing to me. I remember when the first one was imaged, and I couldn't help but think...

Science, it works!
post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Warhaven View Post

There is something intrinsically amazing in this. Not sure if anybody has put this together, but the fact that we've been using the standard molecular model for over 150 years to predict what molecules probably look like and how they bond and that these models look identical to the real thing is simply mind blowing to me. I remember when the first one was imaged, and I couldn't help but think...

Science, it works!


But but but......................... Earth is only 6000 years old!!!
post #9 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjp4eva View Post

But but but......................... Earth is only 6000 years old!!!
Was waiting for this tongue.gif
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post #10 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjp4eva View Post

But but but......................... Earth is only 6000 years old!!!

Depends who you ask.
    
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