The only metallic hydrogen sample in the world has disappeared

Scientists at Harvard University claimed that they had manufactured hydrogen for the first time, capable of revolutionizing current technology. Unfortunately, they lost it.

Harvard researchers announced a few weeks ago that they had obtained the metallic hydrogen by transforming the simplest atom, hydrogen, into a true superconducting metal under the effect of very high pressures. The discovery was subsequently seriously questioned by some researchers, particularly with regard to the pressure attained by the study to obtain such a material. And the doubts are not likely to fade: the one and only sample allegedly made has disappeared.

The tiny sample was kept between two small diamonds in order to study its properties at a temperature close to absolute zero and at a much higher pressure than could be found in the center of the planet. The tragedy then occurred on February 11 when scientists were trying to measure the pressure of the part in question using a low-power laser. The sample was then transferred to the Argonne National Laboratory in Chicago for further testing. It was then that a small “click” would sound, indicating that one of the diamonds had broken into a fine dust. The loss of the diamond caused the loss inexplicable of the piece of hydrogen metal.

The only metallic hydrogen sample that we are talking about it,  it a sample of about 1.5 micrometers in thickness and 10 micrometers in diameter, about one-fifth the diameter of a human hair. So there will still be a lot of skepticism and controversy within the scientific community, since we recall that at normal temperature and pressure, hydrogen metal converts into gas. In other words, either the sample has disappeared, or it never existed. The team as for it wants to soon want to repeat the process to convince once and for all the most skeptical.


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