Magnetic bacteria could make HDDs

Posted on Thursday, May 10 2012 @ 17:13 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Researchers at the University of Leeds found that a type of bacteria that digests iron could be used to create cheaper, more environmentally-friendly electronics. One potential application would be the creation of tiny magnets that could be used to make larger HDDs and faster connections. Full details at TG Daily.
"We are quickly reaching the limits of traditional electronic manufacturing as computer components get smaller," says Leeds' Dr Sarah Staniland.

"The machines we've traditionally used to build them are clumsy at such small scales. Nature has provided us with the perfect tool to circumvent this problem."

The magnetic array was created using a protein which creates perfect nanocrystals of magnetite inside the bacterium Magnetospirilllum magneticum. This protein is attached to a gold surface in a checkerboard pattern and placed in a solution containing iron.

At a temperature of 80°C, similarly-sized crystals of magnetite form on the sections of the surface covered by the protein.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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