Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .




TECH SPACE
Record-high pressure reveals secrets of matter
by Staff Writers
Linkoping, Sweden (SPX) Aug 27, 2015


illustration only

A research team at Linkoping University, together with colleagues in Europe and the United States, has shown that at extremely high pressure even the innermost electrons in the atomic nuclei of the metal osmium begin to interact with each other, a phenomenon never witnessed before. The findings have been published in Nature.

"If we know more about how a matter works, we will be in a better position to develop materials that withstand extreme conditions. In research we're constantly making advances, but in this case we've taken a giant leap", says Igor Abrikosov, professor of theoretical physics at Linkoping University, who also leads the theoretical team within the project.

We already know that material properties change at high pressure. As pressure increases, the distance between the atoms decreases, and the outer electrons, the highly mobile valence electrons, interact with each other. It is also the valence electrons that determine the material's properties. For example under high pressure a shiny electrically conductive metal such as sodium becomes a transparent insulator, and a gas such as oxygen solidifies and conducts electricity. The oxygen can even become superconductive.

But while the valence electrons are highly mobile, the inner electrons continue to move steadily around their atomic nuclei.

The highest pressure achieved thus far is 4 million atmospheres or 400 GPa, which is roughly the pressure at the earth's centre. But thanks to a newly developed method, the researchers have been able to achieve a pressure that is twice as high as at the earth's centre and 7.7 million times higher than at the earth's surface. With great precision they have then been able to measure both temperature and relative positions of atoms in a small crystalline piece of osmium. Osmium is the metal with the highest density and is almost as incompressible as diamond.

Compressing osmium to this high pressure, the researchers found an unexpected anomaly in the relationship between the interatomic distances.

"The high pressure didn't result in any significant change to the valence electrons, which surprised us. It made us rethink things, and go back to the theories", explains Prof. Abrikosov.

Advanced supercomputer calculations at the National Supercomputer Centre, NSC, in Linkoping later revealed how the innermost electrons start to interact with each other as a result of the extreme pressure.

"This is a perfect example of collaboration between experimental and theoretical materials research", says LiU researcher Dr Marcus Ekholm, co-author of the article.

This breakthrough is the result of a long-standing collaboration between the research team at LiU and researchers in Germany, the United States, the Netherlands, France and Russia. The researchers at Bayreuth University in Germany developed the method that makes it possible to apply twice the pressure that was previously possible, while still being able to measure and maintain control. This high pressure could exist at the centre of larger planets than ours.

"Interaction between inner electrons has not previously been observed, and the phenomenon means that we can start searching for brand new states of matter", says Prof Abrikosov.

The results have been published in the highly ranked journal Nature.

"We're really delighted, and it's exciting as it opens up a whole box of new questions for future research", says Prof Abrikosov.

The Most Incompressible Metal Osmium at Static Pressures above 750 GPa, L. Dubrovinsky, N. Dubrovinskaia, E. Bykova, M. Bykov, V. Prakapenka, C. Prescher, K. Glazyrin, H.-P. Liermann, M. Hanfland, M. Ekholm, Q. Feng L. V. Pourovskii, M. I. Katsnelson, J. M. Wills, and I. A. Abrikosov. Advance Online Publication on Nature's website from 24 August 2015. Doi 10.1038/nature14681


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

.


Related Links
Linkoping University
Space Technology News - Applications and Research






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





TECH SPACE
Combined disciplines, computational programs determine atomic structure
Chicago IL (SPX) Aug 27, 2015
A team from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Indiana University combined two techniques to determine the structure of cyanostar, a new abiological molecule that captures unwanted negative ions in solutions. When Semin Lee, a chemist and Beckman Institute postdoctoral fellow at Illinois, first created cyanostar at Indiana University, he knew the chemical properties, but co ... read more


TECH SPACE
Russia Gets Ready for New Moon Landing

ASU chosen to lead lunar CubeSat mission

Russia's moon landing plan hindered by financial distress

Research May Solve Lunar Fire Fountain Mystery

TECH SPACE
Opportunity brushes a rock and conducts in-situ studies

ASU instruments help scientists probe ancient Mars atmosphere

What Happened to Early Mars' Atmosphere

Destination Red Planet: Will Billionaires Fund a Private Mars Colony

TECH SPACE
In Virginia, TechShop lets 'makers' tinker, innovate

New Russian Spaceship to Be Ready Ahead of Schedule

Annoying? US 'That Kissed the Moon' Has to Pay Russia for Space Flights

Chinese tourists unfazed by currency fall, market turmoil

TECH SPACE
Progress for Tiangong 2

China rocket parts hit villager's home: police, media

China's "sky eyes" help protect world heritage Angkor Wat

China's space exploration potential has US chasing its own tail

TECH SPACE
Soyuz rocket with three astronauts launches towards ISS

First Dane in space begins long trip to repositioned ISS

Soyuz Heads to Space Station with New Crew

ISS Crew Redocks Soyuz Spacecraft

TECH SPACE
SpaceX delays next launch after blast

Proton-M Brings Satellite Into Orbit for First Time Since May Accident

US Launches Atlas V Rocket With Navy Communications Satellite After Delay

FCube facility enters operations with fueling of Soyuz Fregat upper stage

TECH SPACE
Distant planet's interior chemistry may differ from our own

Earth's mineralogy unique in the cosmos

A new model of gas giant planet formation

Planetary pebbles were building blocks for the largest planets

TECH SPACE
GSAT-6A's big antenna deployed by ISRO

Record-high pressure reveals secrets of matter

Starshade identifies celestial objects at McMath-Pierce Solar Telescope

US Needs to Upgrade Old Radars to Detect Russian Missiles - Carter




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.