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Atomic Abacus

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Atomic Abacus Structure

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The abacus is composed beads which are made of individual molecules and which has a size that has a diameter which is less than one nanometer that would be one millionth of a millimeter. The beads in this amazing abacus experiment are these soccerball-like molecules which are formed by C60, a 60 carbon atom chain which is artificially developed.

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The people who discovered these soccerball-like molecules won a 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. These molecules are also termed as bucky balls or buckminsterfullerenes, which derived its name after the famous American architect Buckminster Fuller, who had invented geodesic dome that was formed using the patterns used in pentagons and hexagons.

The bucky balls were constructed after a series of experiments and finally, they could derive the formula by forming a series of carbon clusters after the vaporization of graphite with laser. While studying the spectrometry of the mass of carbon clusters, they could find that the particular mass corresponding to 60 was showing different characteristics in the spectrum.

This demarcation led to the study and then the development of this unique cluster and the development of bucky balls. These molecules have a variety of applications including the role of beads in an atomic abacus.

With the very minute bucky balls in the backdrop a group of scientists in Switzerland have invented ultra miniscule abacus, in which spherical carbon molecules sliding along microscopic copper grooves can be used as the counting beads for performing arithmetic calculations.

The principle used would be same as that in a normal abacus but the beads are replaced and are automated. There are many reports which say that the molecular abacus may not be a practical thing as of now.

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But it has a large scope of development in the future.  Its minute size makes it possible to place many such bucky balls which can greatly improve the computing speed and the handling of astronomical numbers.

Next Page: Abacus Computation

Next: Abacus Facts

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