Watch the world's first atomic resolution video

Recorded video confirms theories about how salt crystals form. This knowledge can serve

a basis for general theories about how crystals are made from a disordered chemical mixture.

Crystals are often included in many familiar things:snowflakes, salt, diamonds. Crystals represent the same and repeating arrangement of constituent molecules. The process of going from this disordered state to an ordered one is called nucleation, and although it has been studied for centuries, the exact processes that occur at the atomic level have not yet been experimentally confirmed.

It's not enough just to see molecules on an atomiclevel - humanity has had this opportunity for several decades. The point is that crystal growth is a dynamic process, and observing its development is just as important as observing its structure.

Researchers from the Faculty of ChemistryThe University of Tokyo solved this problem using the method of electron microscopy: they captured the details of chemical processes at a speed of 25 images per second.

The video shows tiny cuboid crystals,consisting of dozens of NaCl molecules. Scientists immediately noticed a statistical pattern in the frequency of the appearance of crystals: they followed the so-called normal distribution, which had long been theorized, but only now experimentally confirmed.

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