The law of Magnetic Forces states that contraries are attracted to each other. We will start from there, to say that although computers and water have never been the best of friends, now they found a way to become the perfect mix of technology and nature. An Indian scientist created a computer that works on water droplets, manipulating fluid dynamics with the fundamental element of computer science, namely and operating clock.
The droplet computer can perform any operation that a conventional electronic computer is able to break, with the only difference that this one does it at slower rates.
The first step towards this evolutionary creation was the computer clock, that is generally responsible for the development of smartphones, airplanes, internet and so on.
Manu Prakash, the mastermind behind the new breakthrough, realized that a rotating magnetic field can act as a clock to synchronize droplets and turn the procedure into an innovative computer case. This happened with the help of tiny iron bars constructed on glass sides and consequently laying back a blank glass slide on top. Everything was finished with a layer of oil in between the flows, to perfectly control the spill of the droplets.
This is not only a great breakthrough in the realm of computer science, but also a new road opened towards a large number of applications in high end biology, chemistry and scalable digital manufacturing.
Manu Prakash is an assistant professor of bioengineering at Stanford University and managed to go through with his idea with the help of his endearing students.
The computer doesn’t process information for the moment but it can successfully manipulate droplets of water.
This is how it works: poppy seeds shaped water droplets are infused with small magnetic nanoparticles and then injected into the layer of oil that finishes the state-of-the art computer. Then, with the help of a rotating magnet, the droplets are pulled into a predetermined direction.
Each rotation of the magnetic field describes a clock cycle, similar to what all computers own. The presence or absence of a droplet are equivalents of 0s and 1s of binary code in computer language.
With the help of this innovative technology, scientists can one day make the droplets act like test tubes that help in the analysis of chemicals or biological components more quickly or in a simpler manner than we can see in lab technologies at present times.
Image Source: hngn.com