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IBM Released World's Smallest Stop Motion Film Called a Boy and His Atom

May 3, 2013 11:57 IST

The IBM scientists on 1 May 2013 released the smallest movie of the world called A Boy and His Atom. The movie tracks movement of the atoms which are magnified 100 million times.

The movie, A Boy and His Atom, is a story of the character called Atom who in turn befriends the single atom and then follows him on journey of bouncing and dancing which helps in explaining the science behind the data storage.

A scientist at IBM Research, Andreas Heinrich explained that positioning, shaping and capturing the atoms in order to create the original motion picture on atomic level was completely first-of-its-kind and precise science. The movie is actually a fun-filled way of sharing the atomic-scale world.

How was the smallest movie of the world made?

In order to make this movie, the scientists moved the atoms with the help of IBM-invented scanning tunneling microscope. Scanning Tunneling Microscope is the device which helped its inventors get the Nobel Prize as well. This was the first tool which helped the scientists in seeing the world in the form of single atoms.

The device weighs two tons and operates at the temperature of -268 degrees Celsius. It magnifies the atomic surface more than 100 million times. With the availability of this device, IBM Research lab is one of those rare places in the world where it is possible to move the atoms with precision of such a level.

Guinness Book of World Records certified this movie as the World's Smallest Stop Motion Film.
 
The film made use of the microscope in order to control the super-sharp needle along copper surface in order to attract the atoms as well as molecules and then, in turn, pull them to specified location on any surface.

Such a kind of science could help in improvement of computer data storage. This is so because the data creation as well as consumption is getting bigger and therefore, there is a need of making data storage smaller. IBM is now applying this technique for developing new computer architectures as well as alternative ways for storing the data in order to make this movie.

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