Issue Date: October 12, 2009
Metallizing Hydrogen, With A Little Lithium
Theoretical work indicates that adding an electropositive atom to hydrogen could make it easier to metallize the element to produce a room-temperature superconductor, reports a group led by Eva Zurek at Cornell University (Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0908262106). Efforts to obtain pure hydrogen metal in the lab have largely failed because the necessary pressure—probably around 400 gigapascals—can’t be reached with steady forces. Zurek and colleagues computationally evaluated the enthalpies of various . . .
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