Gripping Tale: Metal oozes in nanotubes' grasp

11:58am, May 24, 2006

Chalk up another feat of astounding strength for the hollow threads called carbon nanotubes. When they squeeze in on enclosed crystals of hard metals, those substances collapse into thin shafts, an international team of scientists reports.

The nanotubes exert pressures up to 400,000 atmospheres, or about a tenth of that at the Earth's core, say Florian Banhart of the University of Mainz, Germany, and his colleagues. Their findings appear in the May 26 Science.

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