Friday, October 14, 2016

'Weighing' atoms with electrons

The chemical properties of atoms depend on the number of protons in their nuclei, placing them into the periodic table. However, even chemically identical atoms can have different masses – these variants are called isotopes. Although techniques to measure such mass differences exist, these have either not revealed where they are in a sample, or have required dedicated instrumentation and laborious sample preparation. Researchers now report a new way for "weighing" atoms by atomic-resolution imaging of graphene, the one-atom-thick sheet of carbon.

from Geochemistry News -- ScienceDaily

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