PHOTOS: Best Microscopic Images of 2008 Announced

PHOTOS: Best Microscopic Photos of 2008 Announced
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Second Place: Nanotube Factory

Glowing-hot carbon nanotubes form an expanding orange ball in this image by Paul Marshall of Canada's Institute for Microstructural Sciences, a winner in the 2008 Small World photomicrography competition.

The nanotubes are elongated, hollow cylinders of carbon atoms. To make a carbon nanotube--just 1/50,000 the width of a human hair--a piece of carbon (graphite) must be heated, for example by lasers or electricity. And sometimes, Marshall says, the heated mass of nanotubes grows like a bulb in the spring.
—Photograph by Paul Marshall/National Research Council Canada/photo courtesy of Nikon Small World
 
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