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Nakamura_ChemRxiv_MS.pdf (2.15 MB)
Real-Time Video Imaging of Mechanical Motions of a Single Molecular Shuttle
Preprints are manuscripts made publicly available before they have been submitted for formal peer review and publication. They might contain new research findings or data. Preprints can be a draft or final version of an author's research but must not have been accepted for publication at the time of submission.
submitted on 23.10.2019 and posted on 25.10.2019by Toshiki Shimizu, Dominik Lungerich, Joshua Stuckner, Mitsuhiro Murayama, Koji Harano, Eiichi Nakamura
Miniatured machines has open up a new dimension of chemistry, studied
usually as an average over numerous molecules or for a single molecule bound on
a robust substrate. Mechanical motions at a single molecule level, however, are
under quantum control, strongly coupled with fluctuations of its environment --
a system rarely addressed because an efficient way of observing the
nanomechanical motions in real time is lacking. Here, we report sub-ms sub-Å
precision in situ video imaging of a single fullerene molecule shuttling,
rotating, and interacting with a vibrating carbon nanotube, using an electron
microscope, a fast camera, and a denoising algorithm. We have realized high
spatial precision of distance measurement with the standard error of the mean
as small as ± 0.01 nm, and revealed the rich molecular dynamics, where motions
are non-linear, stochastic and often non-repeatable, and a work and energy
relationship at a molecular level previously undetected by time-averaged
measurements or microscopy.