The Four Way Race To Churn Out Ultrafine Particles

As scientists try to fashion a revolutionary new generation of materials for everything from high-tech ceramics to new semiconductors, they are increasingly relying on ultrafine particles that contain only a few thousand atoms apiece. By putting together billions of these tiny particles, researchers can design materials to be far stronger or more versatile than anything now produced. But because the particles are so hard to make, the materials remain mostly a laboratory curiosity.

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