A material that can be calculated has been created

Some time ago, substances that have a so-called shape memory effect. It consists in the fact that in response to an appropriate temperature or magnetic field, matter returns to its original form. Now, Dutch researchers have developed a material that can count to 10 and remember the number of times you pressed it.

Physicists Martin van Heck and Lenard Quakernack of Leiden University in the Netherlands are behind the new material. The description and results of their research have been published in Physical Review Letters (DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.130.268204).

memory material

A piece of sufficiently elastic material can be endowed with very interesting properties. This was proven by researchers from Leiden in the Netherlands. They presented a material that computes compression cycles and stores the result in an easy-to-interpret diagram.

It looks inconspicuous – just a piece of rubber with 22 positions. However, when pressed, the columns curve to the left, except for the first column, which curves to the right. Then the first bar moves the next bar to the right and moves one position each time the material is pressed. In this way, the gum can calculate and keep the score.

Van Heck and his colleagues are exploring how simple materials can be used to process information, a bit like a computer. The piece of rubber provided is an example. The bar moving from left to right can be compared to a computer bit that is either a zero or a one. “It’s not easy to design a structure to interact the way we want it to. Counting is the simplest task we can think of. So it was a logical starting point. In developing such materials one tries to figure out the rules of the game. What is allowed? The rule in this case is That the post is in contact with its immediate neighbors.

Newly developed materials are scalable, but that’s not all. A blunt piece of rubber can do more. It can distinguish the force of pressure by recording each pressure separately. “In our research, we’ve found that you can induce different responses in rubber by pressing with different levels of force. By experimenting with this, we’ve been able to create a supermaterial that only counts when you squeeze it in the right order, with the right amount of force. In other words, it’s sort of like a castle,” Quakernaak said. what.

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