You're about to see the movie that holds the Guinness World Records record for the World's Smallest Stop-Motion Film (see how it was made at http://youtu.be/xA4QWwaweWA).
The ability to move single atoms - the smallest particles of any element in the universe - is crucial to IBM's research in the field of atomic memory. But even nanophysicists need to have a little fun. In that spirit, IBM researchers used a scanning tunneling microscope to move thousands of carbon monoxide molecules (two atoms stacked on top of each other), all in pursuit of making a movie so small it can be seen only when you magnify it 100 million times. A movie made with atoms. Learn more about atomic memory, data storage and big data at http://www.ibm.com/madewithatoms
Today, it takes roughly one million atoms to store a single bit of data on a computer or electronic device. A bit is the basic unit of information in computing that can have only one of two values, one or zero. Eight bits form a byte. Recently, IBM Research announced it can now store that same bit of information in just 12 atoms.
From 1,000,000 to 12 - that’s a dramatic breakthrough that not only has the potential to make our computers and devices smaller and more powerful, but also holds enormous implications for the way entire industries operate.
The world's smallest movie set:
The scanning tunneling microscope (STM):
One way to look at the STM is as a needle that drags atoms across a surface using magnetism. But behind that needle is a room full of equipment, all there to control the environment to a spectacular degree. The development of the STM by IBM researchers Gerd Binnig and Heinrich Rohrer won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1986.
The scientists used copper 111 as the surface of the animation - the same material they used 10 years ago when they built the first computer that performed digital computation operations.
Carbon monoxide (CO):
The scientists chose carbon monoxide atoms to move around the plate. Carbon monoxide has one carbon atom and one oxygen atom, stacked on top of each other.
Learn more at: http://www.research.ibm.com/articles/madewithatoms.shtml