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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 8:28 EDT

Latest Clemens Bechinger Stories

2011-12-12 12:48:12

A heat engine measuring only a few micrometers works as well as its larger counterpart, although it splutters What would be a case for the repair shop for a car engine is completely normal for a micro engine. If it sputters, this is caused by the thermal motions of the smallest particles, which interfere with its running. Researchers at the University of Stuttgart and the Stuttgart-based Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems have now observed this with a heat engine on the...

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2010-03-30 12:39:26

Researchers discover why atoms in solids show a preference for certain structures Nature likes some symmetries, but dislikes others. Ordered solids often display a so-called 6-fold rotation symmetry. To achieve this kind of symmetry, the atoms in a plane surround themselves with six neighbors in an arrangement similar to that found in honeycombs. As opposed to this, ordered materials with 7-fold, 9-fold or 11-fold symmetries are never observed in nature. Researchers from the Max Planck...

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2008-12-02 15:47:22

Remote controlled with a magnetic field, aggregates of plastic particles on a microchip function like stirrers and pumps Sometimes physicists resort to tried and trusted model-making tricks. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research, the University of Stuttgart and the Colorado School of Mines have constructed micromachines using the same trick that model makers use to get ships into a bottle where the masts and rigging of the sailing ship are not erected until it is in the...