Author Topic: Cold cold chemistry  (Read 2997 times)

Offline CthulhuKid

  • talky crow
  • ****
  • Posts: 44
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
Cold cold chemistry
« on: July 02, 2013, 09:41:56 AM »
http://www.latimes.com/news/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-alcohol-space-methanol-quantum-tunneling-physics-cheat-20130701,0,2366673.story

I won't pretend to understand exactly how this is possible, and the explanation in the story seems lacking to me.  But kind of neat, none the less.

Offline bn

  • Titanium Physicist
  • Administrator
  • Godzilla!!!
  • *****
  • Posts: 1065
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Compressing Hearts, Super Robo Style
    • View Profile
    • The Titanium Physicists Podcast
Re: Cold cold chemistry
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2013, 06:17:38 PM »
oh neat!
have you listened to the titanium physicists episode about quantum tunneling?
Titanium Physicists has a pro-bee-analogy agenda. That's certainly no secret.

Offline scikopas

  • Miocene Terror Bird
  • *******
  • Posts: 100
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
    • LASER-Let's Agree Science and Engineering are Rad
Re: Cold cold chemistry
« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2013, 01:10:46 PM »
wow, I never thought about quantum tunneling in terms of reaction kinetics.
 I suppose since the Arrhenius equation still just describes a potential energy barrier, and at low temperatures the quantum behavior dominates, it follows that tunneling across the barrier could be going on... 

Looks like I focus too much on my own charge transfer tunneling research. time to branch out more!

to echo ben, neat!
« Last Edit: July 03, 2013, 01:18:02 PM by aliencam »
PhD student in Materials Science at Arizona State University currently working on high-temperature superconductors and quantum computers or something.
my (materials) science podcast: LASER (Let's Agree Science and Engineering are Rad!) twitter @scikopas

Offline CthulhuKid

  • talky crow
  • ****
  • Posts: 44
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Cold cold chemistry
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2013, 10:01:42 AM »
oh neat!
have you listened to the titanium physicists episode about quantum tunneling?

I know I did, though it must have been some time ago.  So, does that just mean the atoms tunnel themselves close enough to other atoms to connect?  So the electrons are naturally repulsing each other, but they tunnel into the electron cloud and engage the nuclear forces without the energy normally required? 

I'm busy working on homework for my finance class, so jumping to this train of thought is making my brain itch.

Offline bn

  • Titanium Physicist
  • Administrator
  • Godzilla!!!
  • *****
  • Posts: 1065
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Compressing Hearts, Super Robo Style
    • View Profile
    • The Titanium Physicists Podcast
Re: Cold cold chemistry
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2013, 01:30:29 PM »
more like...
imagine that there are train cars on a bunch of rail road tracks
and each traincar has an engineer on it, who, when regulations permit, will hook two adjacent cars together.

but each traincar also has a gambler on it, who, when close enough to another traincar, will gamble with the gambler in the adjacent car. and if they roll a really good number on their dice, will hook the cars together... regardless of regulations.

so normally, the gas is warmish, and the traincars move around violently, and the gamblers don't have much time to gamble together.

but in the coldness of space, the traincars move slowly, and the gamblers have enough time to gamble a lot and hitch together.

at least that's what I think this article is saying.
Titanium Physicists has a pro-bee-analogy agenda. That's certainly no secret.