A group of researchers from the Australian Queensland, led by Professor Jack Clegg and Professor John Mcmurtry studied the structural mechanism responsible for the elasticity of crystals at the atomic level. This allowed them to create a flexible single crystal, which optionally can be tied in a knot.
Across the width of the grown crystals is commensurate with fishing line, and the length is 5 cm They were formed in the copper compounds and acetylacetonate, and six other structurally related compounds containing copper and other metals with high flexibility.
The experiments of the Queensland team showed that the crystals will be able to repeatedly bend and return to its original state without deformation. Unusual flexible crystals can find application in many industries. In particular, thanks to them, there can be new hybrid materials for aviation and space technology.
In addition, bending of the crystals change their optical and magnetic properties that can become the Foundation for new technologies that previously were not possible.