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Molecular speed bumps

Mark KuzykRegular readers will recall my mention of the Kuzyk Quantum Gap a few days ago and how Intute Spotlight would be covering news on how Kuzyk himself is closing the gap.

Well, here’s the spin: New organic molecules that interact with light more strongly than any other materials could provide the template for new high-speed optical switches for telecommunications and data processing, according to an international team of researchers. The same compounds could also act as the basic units of optical memory systems and be used to produce high-density holograms.

Researchers from Washington State University (WSU), the University of Leuven in Belgium and the Chinese Academy of Sciences have developed and tested an entirely new class of chromophores. The chemists in China synthesised the compounds, which were then evaluated using theoretical calculations by scientists at WSU. The optical properties were then tested by the Belgian team. “To our great excitement, the molecules performed better than any other molecules ever measured,” says WSU physicist Mark Kuzyk.

Read on…

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