Re: Nano positioning with light beams ?

Anders Sandberg (
12 Nov 1997 14:26:11 +0100

"Berrie" <> writes:

> Anyway (this is of course way out off my league) what if you
> would use something similar for positioning atoms. So by
> keeping one Atom locked between beams from different (opposite)
> directions and doing this also with the one you would like to push
> against it, you could move and work in 3d, instead of flat, like an STM.

Yes, atoms can be manipulated with laser beams. "Optical crystals" can
be created where atoms align in the nodes to three intersecting beams,
and matter can be moved around or cooled with lasers. Using them for
molecular manipulation is likely hard though, since the wavefronts are
much larger than the atoms, so that if you push atom A towards atom B,
both atoms will move.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y