Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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colored haze that floats plus combines plus divides & is breathable

a carbon lattice cube of vacuum about .000001 cm on a side has the density to float atmospherically; we put quantum dots on the outside to make it brightly colored; charge groups at the haze give it various electrostatic motional abilities
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JK Rowling is getting to me n I haven't yet read any of her books

this is a multicolorable haze that glows like quantum dots yet can be blended or divided plus goes upward

It looks like wizardy as well as making a nifty interface to Mistrys gestural computing activity

I figured out that the teeniest carbon container that could have a volume of vacuum or hydrogen sufficient to float was kind of near .000001 cm on a side; putting quantum dots on the side plus making it an electret gives a person a haze that can be directed (electret) around plus floats

Making the quantum dots out of tin Se or TiSn makes them absent toxicity yet glow like quantum dots

beanangel, May 22 2010

How big is the air... http://www.getnitrogen.org/pdf/graham.pdf
Something about the size of nitrogen [madness, Feb 02 2011]

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       What is a quantum dot, O leguminous one?
pocmloc, May 22 2010
  

       Buchanan Translation Services at your service again.   

       First, you make hollow carbon "nano-shells", the inside of which is a vacuum. Beany's calculations suggest that such a shell, 1nm (one millionth of a millimetre) across will be able to float.   

       Then, you attach quantum dots to them. Quantum dots are basically small clusters of semiconducting material, a few tens of atoms across. Such clusters fluoresce at a wavelength which is determined by the size of the cluster; they're used as very efficient fluorescent tags in various applications.   

       You also put a permanent static charge on the whole structure.   

       This gives you a sort of "fog" of floating, fluorescent particles which you could move around with an electric field.   

       PROBLEMS: (a) I very much doubt that a 1nm "shell" of carbon, containing a vacuum, will be less dense than air.   

       (b) Quantum dots tend to be big (say, a few nanometres across) and heavy. It'll be like attaching medicine balls to a toy helium balloon.
MaxwellBuchanan, May 22 2010
  

       why not just use dry ice and a spotlight?
RichardT, May 23 2010
  

       Ah thankyou [MB], I never knew that. They sounded vaguely implausible.
pocmloc, May 23 2010
  

       One more thing. A rough calculation suggests that air has on the order of one gas molecule (N2 or O2) in every cubic nanometer.   

       Therefore, even if a 1nm carbon "shell" traps a perfect vacuum (which I guess it would), it's not going to displace nearly enough air to be bouyant, let alone lift a cargo of qdots.   

       On the other hand, bouyancy probably doesn't make much sense at these scales, where Brownian motion will dominate. My guess is that you'd be as well off just spraying quantum dots into the air. At a few nanometres across, they'll drift around for a lot longer than, say, a mist of water droplets would.
MaxwellBuchanan, May 23 2010
  

       If they are, as you say, //used ... in various applications// then how come none of the users have tried spraying them into the air when their superviser's back has been turned?
pocmloc, May 23 2010
  

       Probably because they are embarrasingly expensive (qdots, that is, not supervisors). They are pretty bright as fluorophores go, but they're not orders of magnitude brighter than other more conventional (=cheaper) fluorophores.   

       The main reason they're of interest is that they don't photobleach (ie, burn out, as conventional fluorescent dyes can do under intence illumination), and they have narrow and tuneable emission spectra combined with broad excitation wavelengths.
MaxwellBuchanan, May 23 2010
  

       // Just add sentience and you've got a John Carpenter film //   

       Alternatively, just remove sentience and you've got a Paul Verhoeven film.
8th of 7, May 23 2010
  

       "Purple rain..."
RayfordSteele, May 23 2010
  

       Oh holy carp [beanangel]'s still around. I thought she'd gone the way of the Time Cube guy!
Hive_Mind, Feb 02 2011
  

       Hey, this was coherent for a beanangel idea.   

       There's the problem that there is some evidence that carbon nano-structures may be toxic in a manner similar to asbestos (research on-going last I'd heard. Also, I suspect constructing consistently vacant carbon nano-structures is still some distance in the future, as is placing nano-dots consistently on anything other than an atomically smooth substrate.
MechE, Feb 02 2011
  

       Hmmm I have wondered how small a shell will float in the atmosphere...   

       Apparently air molecules are about one-ten-billionth of a meter.   

       The carbon shell need not be complete --- a closed wire mesh will work so long as the voids are about the size of the air molecules.   

       As the shell becomes smaller the ratio of the contained radius and shell wall decreases --- which is bad. The reverse is also true which means that bigger balloons have more lift.
madness, Feb 02 2011
  

       //consistently vacant// Consistency wouldn't be a problem -- you could construct a mixture of vacant and nonvacant, then sort by density (centrifuge, or mass spectrometry, or something) no?
mouseposture, Feb 02 2011
  
      
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