Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Artsy science

I've been working on various kinds of microscopes for about 6 years now, and I've taken a lot of pictures.  A LOT of pictures.  Somewhere in the realm of thousands.  Most of them are of nanowires of varying populations and striping patterns, but a couple were of funny things that were strange anomalies (i.e. nanowire walls and nano-Doritos).  Some of my pictures looked pretty artsy.

All of those pictures have been completely blown out of the water by a picture I took today.  Grad student Justin and I were evaluating the extent to which plasma etching revealed gold electrodes by plating gold and observing it under our optical microscope.  I have no idea what kind of etching happened to give us this shape, but there it is, a millimeter-sized treble and bass clef, both illustrated in fractal gold:

Merry golden melodies!
Nothing about this is, of course, at all publishable, so I don't mind sharing it.  We still have no idea what happened.  It almost looks like strips of support electrode gold came up after plasma etching, but we aren't sure.  In any case, it makes for quite a cool picture.

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