Rohrer and Binnig, IBM physicists

Rohrer and Binnig, IBM physicists

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Credit: IBM RESEARCH/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Rohrer and Binnig, IBM physicists. IBM Fellows and Nobel laureates Swiss physicist Heinrich Rohrer (left, 1933-2013) and German physicist Gerd Binnig (right, born 1947) at the dedication ceremony for the Binnig and Rohrer Nanotechnology Center on 17 May 2011. Rohrer and Binnig invented the scanning tunnelling microscope (STM) while working for IBM. They were awarded the 1986 Nobel Prize in Physics for their work. The STM uses a fine needle with an electric potential running through it to scan the surface of an object. It is able to obtain very high magnifications, even visualising individual atoms (example of STM research in background, see C019/5338).

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