Scientists Built a Micro Engine, But Don't Understand How it Works
Mar 13, 2014 11:11
Can you invent something but not know how it works? Apparently, you can. The minds behind this new microscopic engine don't know how their invention works.
Vitaly Svetovoy at the University of Twente just announced a new microengine that's capable of producing powerful forces with just water and a tiny jolt of electricity. "This actuator is the first step to truly microscopic combustion engines," Svetovoy's team said in a new paper about the engine.
The problem? They aren't sure entirely how this thing works. They understand the broad strokes of course, and that the micro-combustion engine consists of a water filled chamber with a pair of electrodes running through it. When current passes through the electrode, the water dissociates into oxygen and hydrogen and forms nanobubbles. The volume of the bubbles balloons enough to warp the membrane that holds it together when the engine is turned off. Scientists are unsure of the reason for that.
Read more over here. It is a fascinating read: [Tech Review]
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