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Mass sensors

Weighing single atoms with a nanotube

Researchers have used a vibrating carbon nanotube to set a new record for nanomechanical mass sensing. Could this approach — currently being pursued by three independent groups — lead to a new type of mass spectrometer?

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Figure 1: Three groups have shown that nanotube mass sensors are capable of atomic resolution.


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Knobel, R. Weighing single atoms with a nanotube. Nature Nanotech 3, 525–526 (2008).

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