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Who firstly discovered elements in your team at the MRL and what was your best experiment?
Question Date: 2012-08-28
Answer 1:

The MRL where we work does a lot of fantastic things, but we don't discover new elements. For the most part, all the elements we know have already been discovered. We work on making new materials. A material is usually made of several elements, and we are interested in using them to fill important roles in technology. For example, you may have heard about superconductors, or you may be familiar with the displays on cell phones or the flat-panel monitor you're using to view this website! All these materials have materials that are designed and engineered for specific purposes, and often a device will have many different materials, all with different functions. For example, the screen, must be hard to be scratch-resistant, but must not be brittle because we do not want it to break if it is dropped! The case will likely be a plastic or a metal, each of which have their own advantages and disadvantages. The computer chips inside are highly-engineered semiconductors, and even the wiring that electrically connects the components has been chosen for its conductivity, melting point, flow properties, and corrosion resistance.

I don't know if I have a "best" experiment, but there are certainly some conclusions we arrive to that end up being quite elegant. An elegant solution is always a pleasure to achieve, although it never happens as frequently as we would like!

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