(ORDO NEWS) — Scientists from Lund University have succeeded in turning a molecule from impermeable to conductive. In addition, they were able to control the state of the molecule, creating, in fact, the first transistor molecule.
Swedish scientists have been able to create a simple hydrocarbon molecule that functions as a logic gate, like those that power transistors. This discovery allows us to get closer to the creation of electrical components with a size of several nanometers.
We have developed a simple hydrocarbon molecule that changes shape and transforms from non-conductive to conductive at the same time. The secret of success was the creation of a so-called antiaromatic ring in the molecule, so that it became more reliable and able to accept and transmit electrons, said researcher Daniel Strand.
Many organic molecules are made up of six-carbon aromatic benzene rings . However, these molecules do not change their properties or shape when exposed to electricity. So scientists turned to rings of eight carbon atoms .
If two electrons are introduced into such a molecule , it becomes flat and conductive , although before that it was barrel-shaped and non-conductive. In this sense, its properties are similar to those of a transistor.
What does it give to humanity
Scientists note that the uniqueness of this molecule lies in its simplicity. It consists only of carbon and hydrogen atoms, so it is not difficult to produce it artificially .
The discovery by Swedish chemists means that it is now possible to start thinking about developing electrical switches and new mechanical systems on the scale of one molecule based on antiaromatic hydrocarbons, which will form the basis of even smaller and faster computers.
Daniel Strand emphasized that molecules that change shape in response to an electrical potential open up exciting possibilities for scientists. Energy-efficient computer architectures can be imagined, and in the future perhaps molecular-scale electrical machines.
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