On the cusp of something amazing is Teslaporeisis or the art of self assembly conducted at a distance, something Nikola Tesla would have understood without question. :)
The system works by remotely oscillating positive and negative charges in each nanotube, causing them to chain together into long wires. Cherukuri’s specially designed Tesla coil even generates a tractor beam-like effect as nanotube wires are pulled toward the coil over long distances.
Rice University chemist Paul Cherukuri, left, Texas A&M graduate student Lindsey Bornhoeft, center, and Rice research scientist Carter Kittrell show the power of Teslaphoresis, which wirelessly lights their fluorescent tubes. Tests with a customized Tesla coil revealed that nanotubes within the field self-assemble into wires.
This force-field effect on matter had never been observed on such a large scale, Cherukuri said, and the phenomenon was unknown to Nikola Tesla, who invented the coil in 1891 with the intention of delivering wireless electrical energy.
“Electric fields have been used to move small objects, but only over ultrashort distances,” Cherukuri said. “With Teslaphoresis, we have the ability to massively scale up force fields to move matter remotely.”
Schematic illustration of the Teslaphoretic (TEP) system consisting of a primary coil energized by an RF plasma generator (not shown), which creates a magnetic field (B- field) that inductively couples to the secondary coil, resulting in a high-voltage RF signal that terminates into a hollow disk-shaped antenna. The gradient electric field (E-field) projected into free space from the antenna creates a TEP force that polarizes and self-assembles carbon nanotubes into long wires. Courtesy: ACS Nano