Magnetic Properties of Nanocrystals

Gina Miller writes "More on the magnetic properties of nanocrystals in United Press International's Nanotech could power future magnets (30 March 2002), an interview with Laura Henderson Lewis, materials scientist at Brookhaven National Laboratory's Department of Applied Science. "Tomorrow's supermagnets could be made of molecule-sized chunks of materials that normally would never interact, possibly creating magnetic fields strong enough to levitate trains at room temperature…" Lewis studies how magnetic materials perform and interact at the micro- and nano-scale, which involve groups of hundreds of atoms or even single molecules. Because magnetic atoms only affect other atoms a nanometer or so distant, engineering the structure of materials on the nanometer scale provides unique opportunities to control the magnetic properties of the materials. The methods mentioned for achieving nanometer scale control of structure are, however, not especially molecular – rapid solidification and milling with steel balls. For other coverage of nanomaterials research at Brookhaven National Laboratory, see Nanodot post of March 22, 2002 Brookhaven Lab launches nanomaterials research effort"

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