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World's smallest incandescent lamp (Image 1)

Two techniques used to "see" the world's smallest carbon nanotube lamp

Physicists at the University of California, Los Angeles, have created the world's smallest incandescent lamp using a filament made from a single carbon nanotube only 100 atoms wide. Invisible to the untrained eye, the filament appears as a tiny point of light when the lamp is turned on. Even with the best optical microscope it is only just possible to resolve the nanotube's non-zero length. The team uses an electron microscope capable of atomic resolution to image the filament's true structure. This artist's rendering shows the two techniques used to "see" the carbon nanotube lamp: Visible light microscopy (top) and electron microscopy (middle).

The research was supported by a Natoinal Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award (grant DMR 07-48880).

To learn more about this research, see the Science Daily news story Physicists Create World's Smallest Incandescent Lamp. (Date of Image: May 2009) [See related image Here.]

Credit: Regan Group, UCLA

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