Scientists Are Creating Colloidal Diamonds

Making light waves as useful as electrons in computing isn’t something to overlook, and physicists know this well. That’s why they like colloidal diamonds, stable structures capable of unique applications. Many have tried for long to create colloidal diamonds, and now it’s finally possible.

A team of scientists was determined to take the idea a lof more seriously, and they were led in their research by David Pine, who’s a professor of physics at NYU and a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering.

New process for self-assembly of colloids in a diamond formation

The scientists created a process that can lead to cheap and scalable development of such structures. It was concluded that a steric interlock mechanism could be used for spontaneously producing the necessary staggered bonds to make the structure possible. When pyramidal colloids approached each other, they generated a diamond formation by linking in the necessary orientation. Rather than going through the complicated process of building these structures through nanomachines, the mechanism allows colloids to structure themselves without needing any outside interference.

David Pine spoke about the making of a diamond structure:

Most researchers had given up on it, to tell you the truth—we may be the only group in the world who is still working on this. So I think the publication of the paper will come as something of a surprise to the community.

Dr. Evan Runnerstrom, who is program manager, an element of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command’s Army Research Laboratory, and Army Research Office (ARO), declared:

Dr. Pine’s long-sought demonstration of the first self-assembled colloidal diamond lattices will unlock new research and development opportunities for important Department of Defense technologies which could benefit from 3-D photonic crystals,

Scientists are confident that the research could lead to highly efficient optical circuits for advances in optical computers and lasers, cheaper than ever light filters, and many more. The study was detailed in the journal Nature.



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