The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #59418   Message #1591322
Posted By: Amos
26-Oct-05 - 08:42 PM
Thread Name: BS: The Mother of all BS threads
Subject: RE: BS: The Mother of all BS threads
YEs, but I was trying to maintain a civilized posture, not wantonly scattering unwanted phraseology about like some folks are wont to do.

Meanwhile we may be in trouble:

WALKING MOLECULES. A single molecule has been made to walk on two
legs. Ludwig Bartels and his colleagues at the University of
California at Riverside, guided by theorist Talat Rahman of Kansas
State University, created a molecule---called 9,10-dithioanthracene
(DTA)---with two "feet" configured in such a way that only one foot
at a time can rest on the substrate. Activated by heat or the nudge
of a scanning tunneling microscope tip, DTA will pull up one foot,
put down the other, and thus walk in a straight line across a flat
surface. The planted foot not only supplies support but also keeps
the body of the molecule from veering or stumbling off course. In
tests on a standard copper surface, such as the kind used to
manufacture microchips, the molecule has taken 10,000 steps without
faltering. According to Bartels (,
951-827-2041), possible uses of an atomic-sized walker include
guidance of molecular motion for molecule-based information storage
or even computation. DTA moves along a straight line as if placed
onto railroad tracks without the need to fabricate any nano-tracks;
the naturally occurring copper surface is sufficient. The
researchers now aim at developing a DTA-based molecule that can
convert thermal energy into directed motion like a molecular-sized
ratchet. (Kwon et al., Physical Review Letters, upcoming article;
text at; see movie at