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Education and Outreach Programs

Naperville Central High School ESRP 2018

Analysis of Nanomagnetism on Cobalt Through SX-STM - High School Goes Nano”

Authors:

  • Students:
    • Achudh Balaraman
    • Peter Davis
    • Prateek Dullur
    • Colin Jensen
    • Ria Jha
    • Sarah Kee
    • Yangyang Li
    • Ganesan Narayanan
    • Naraen Palanikumar
    • Ammaar Saeed
    • Andrew Zhang
  • Teachers:
    • Katherine Seguino
  • Mentors:
    • Volker Rose (Argonne National Laboratory, Center for Nanoscale Materials)

Center for Nanoscale Materials

In the current age of information, we have a growing reliance on the ability to access and store data. Hard drives are becoming progressively smaller and more powerful, and cloud storage enables collaboration on a worldwide level. However, these technologies are approaching their physical limits. As we look toward the future, we must consider the power of nanotechnology, and more specifically, nanomagnets, to revolutionize the field of data storage.

Developments in nanotechnology suggests that individual molecules could be used as a binary piece of information. However, instead of 1’s and 0’s, these molecules would be characterized by their quantum spin: up or down. Quantum spin also indicates whether or not an atom is ferromagnetic, so by analyzing an atom’s magnetization directions, information could be read and stored. Using Synchrotron X-Ray Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (SX-STM), we can examine the chemical, topographical, and magnetic properties of metals at the atomic level in high resolution. SX-STM allows us to examine a metal’s feasibility for use in nanomagnetic data storage.

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