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Giant diatomic molecules the size of small bacteria have been formed from pairs of Rydberg atoms, and then studied using an optical microscope. Physicists in Germany, led by Immanuel Bloch and Christian Gross at the Max-Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, achieved the result by manipulating Rydberg atoms trapped within an optical lattice. Their work could lead to new techniques for determining molecular properties.

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Category: Science