An engineering breakthrough using DNA could unlock the quantum computing revolution

The researchers set about trying to realize Little idea for a superconductor by modifying lattices of carbon nanotubes. The main obstacle was controlling the chemical reaction along the nanotubes so that the lattice could be assembled as precisely as possible. According to Egelman, their “work demonstrates that ordered carbon nanotube modification can be achieved by taking advantage of DNA-sequence control over the spacing between adjacent reaction sites.”

Biological research applied to physics and engineering

The lattice the scientists built has not yet been tested for superconductivity, but it offers proof of principle, according to the researchers. “While cryo-EM has emerged as the main technique in biology for determining the atomic structures of protein assemblies, it has had much less impact thus far in materials science,” Egelman described.

“While we often think of biology using tools and techniques from physics,” Egelman added, “Our work shows that the approaches being developed in biology can actually be applied to problems in physics and engineering. This is what is so exciting about science: not being able to predict where our work will lead.”

Leave a Comment