Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


CCNY, Lehman experts find ’magnetic flames’ in molecular magnets exhibit properties akin to fire


In a groundbreaking experiment, researchers from The City College of New York (CCNY) and Lehman College have measured the speed of magnetic avalanches and discovered that the process is analogous to the flame front of a flammable substance. The discovery of a “magnetic flame” could make it easier for engineers to study the dynamics of fire.

Magnetic avalanches occur when the polarity of a molecular nanomagnet is changed suddenly and sufficient energy is released to cause a chain reaction that changes the polarity of the other molecular nanomagnets in a crystal.

Yoko Suzuki, a graduate student at The City College, devised an experiment to measure the progress of a molecular avalanche through a crystal of Mn12 (manganese) acetate using an array of tiny micrometer sized Hall sensors placed underneath the specimen. Ms. Suzuki observed that the avalanche began at one end of the crystal and propagated at speeds of a few meters per second in the form of a “flame” front that released magnetic energy into the crystal.

“Molecular nanomagnets are the first-known magnetic materials in which the magnetic energy density is sufficient to ignite a ‘magnetic flame,’” said Dr. Myriam P. Sarachik, Distinguished Professor of Physics at CCNY and Ms. Suzuki’s mentor. “This could open a potentially important new road for investigating the dynamics of fire in flammable substances because, unlike chemical burning, magnetic burning is non-destructive, reversible and more readily controlled.”

The investigation into the propagation of magnetic avalanches grew out of a theory suggested by Eugene Chudnovsky and Dmitry Garanin. Dr. Chudnovsky, Distinguished Professor of Physics at Lehman College, collaborated with Ms. Suzuki and Professor Sarachik in the present work.

Chudnovsky and Garanin had theorized that under the right circumstances a magnetic system could be made to emit laser type radiation. They suggested that a magnetic avalanche might initiate such laser action. Measuring the speed of the avalanche would aid in the examination of the theory.

When experimentalists at CCNY discovered that the avalanche propagates at a constant speed of a few meters per second, Professor Chudnovsky proposed that the effect is, in fact, “magnetic burning”. Comparison between theory and experiment confirmed his conjecture.

A paper reporting the discovery of “magnetic burning” by Ms. Suzuki, Professors Sarachik and Chudnovsky and coauthors has been accepted for publication in Physical Review Letters. In addition to CCNY and Lehman College, scientists from the Weizmann Institute in Israel and the University of Florida participated in the project, providing the Hall sensors and crystals, respectively.

Jay Mwamba | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Move over, lasers: Scientists can now create holograms from neutrons, too
21.10.2016 | National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

nachricht Finding the lightest superdeformed triaxial atomic nucleus
20.10.2016 | The Henryk Niewodniczanski Institute of Nuclear Physics Polish Academy of Sciences

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>