Innovations in Sciences, IT, Computers, Robotics and Nanotechnology

Scientists discover new ‘Quasicrystals’


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Quasicrystals

Mains level: NA


Scientists have discovered a new type of quasicrystal, one with 12-fold symmetry, in the Sand Hills of north central Nebraska, USA.

What is a Quasicrystal?

  • Quasicrystal is essentially a crystal-like substance.
  • However, unlike a crystal, in which atoms are arranged in a repeating pattern, a quasicrystal consists of atoms that are arranged in a pattern that doesn’t repeat itself regularly.
  • For the longest time, physicists believed every crystalline arrangement of atoms must have a pattern that repeats itself perfectly over and over again.
  • However, this changed in 1982, when material scientist Dan Shechtman discovered crystal structures that are mathematically regular, but that do not repeat themselves.

How are they formed?

  • Electrical discharge triggered quasicrystal formation in the recent finding.
  • It’s also the first time that researchers have found a quasicrystal somewhere other than meteorites or the debris from nuclear blasts.

Applications of quasicrystals

  • There is no major commercial applications yet exploit properties of the quasicrystalline state directly.
  • Quasicrystals form in compounds noted for their high strength and light weight, suggesting potential applications in aerospace and other industries.
  • They can be used in surgical instruments, LED lights and non-stick frying pans.


Crack Prelims 2023! Talk to our Rankers

(Click) FREE 1-to-1 on-call Mentorship by IAS-IPS officers | Discuss doubts, strategy, sources, and more

Get an IAS/IPS ranker as your 1: 1 personal mentor for UPSC 2024

Attend Now

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments


Join us across Social Media platforms.

💥Mentorship New Batch Launch
💥Mentorship New Batch Launch