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May 01 2013

Not too small for IMAX.

atomboy

In crap-you-didn’t-know-was-possible news. The folks at IBM Research have come up with a stop-motion movie using single atoms to make up the characters. Appropriately enough the called it, “A Boy and his Atom.”

Scientists at IBM Research have just earned a Guinness world record for the smallest movie ever: They created a stop-motion film by moving atoms, one at a time, across a copper surface. The result is the sweet story of a boy named Atom, who befriends a single atom and then goes dancing, plays catch and jumps on a trampoline.

Apparently they used something called a scanning tunneling microscope and magic to move atoms around on a copper plate. The microscope itself doesn’t use optics to see the atoms, that would melt your brain, instead it uses a needle with a one atom thick tip to feel for atoms on a plate. The result is the bucky-balls in a puddle look you see in the image.

Hit the Jump for the full 242 frames of joy.

I don’t know about you but I think the whole thing is pretty cool. I’m gonna have to get me one of those microscopes and poke someone in the eye with it. The closest thing I’ve come up with so far is a robot that searches for a pee on a plate, but it does it in the dark so that’s something. Still hasn’t found it yet, but it’s still searching.

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