Picture of a Single Atom Wins Science Photo Contest

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by rick_reno, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. rick_reno


    Dec 3, 2012
    N Idaho
    • Funny Funny x 1
  2. Looks likes dust on the sensor! Or is it a composite? :D
    • Funny Funny x 1
  3. Growltiger

    Growltiger Administrator Administrator

    It's the moon.
    • Funny Funny x 2
  4. 480sparky


    May 27, 2013
    I don't see an atom. I see light emitted by one.

    Seriously? Absolutely NO WAY can ANY off-the-shelf DSLR capture a single atom.

    Unless they used 150,000 extension tubes.
  5. Just like how you never see the sun :).
  6. Valentines day---same thing? :cautious::cautious:
  7. TonyW


    Jan 15, 2010
    Oh, c’mon guys don’t you recognise the good old British sense of humour? You just can’t Lik it ;):ROFLMAO:
  8. Did they use a macro lens?
  9. Should of shot it with a D850! :D
  10. The article's title is misleading. A "picture of a single atom" implies that there is an image that shows the nucleus and the electron cloud surrounding it. That's of course impossible using visible light and normal photographic equipment. The picture in the article is just light emitted by the atom, as Ken pointed out, and is due to electronic transitions in the atom. It's like saying you have a picture of a distant star, when all you have at best is a single pixel of the light from the star. A better title for the article would have been "a picture of light emitted by a single atom."

    And since I'm not familiar with that setup, how do they know it's a single atom?
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. 480sparky


    May 27, 2013
    Here's the same thing:

    Only...................... there's 142EE257 atoms.

  12. Presumably from how they set up the experiment
  13. That's too funny!!!

  14. Growltiger

    Growltiger Administrator Administrator

    Easy - you use the light meter in the camera. If there are two atoms you have to adjust the aperture one stop smaller, 4 atoms is 2 stops, 8 atoms is 3 stops and so on. If you have more than 100 atoms you have to wear protective goggles and it will burn a hole in the sensor.
    • Funny Funny x 2
  15. So, if they get two pictures in the same month, is it a blue atom?
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Why didn't I think of that? :confused:
  17. That's nothing, I have 60.2 x 10e23 atoms in my water bowl right now. (10 moles)...

    Georgie Beagle

    "it is a pretty picture though..." - alexis
  18. Well one also need to consider if another atom is causing a total eclipse of the one behind it. Its perfectly fine to take the picture during single atom totality, but otherwise you can burn your eyes and of course the sensor
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