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Physicists from the University of Basel have demonstrated spin alignment of free electrons within a two-dimensional material. Writing in the latest edition of Nature Nanotechnology, they described their observation of spontaneous spin polarization, which cannot occur in ideal two-dimensional materials according to a well-known theorem from the 1960s.

Two-dimensional materials are the subject of numerous studies. As they are only a few atomic layers thick, they have different physical properties from their three-dimensional equivalents. Graphene, a single layer of carbon atoms arranged in a honeycomb pattern, promises to deliver entirely new applications thanks to its notable electronic properties and is the best-known example of this group of innovative materials.

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Category: Science