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Design new materials with specific properties: Breaking down band structures

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Despite a deep understanding of the properties of individual atoms — the ‘ingredients’ that make up a crystal — scientists found that, when they are combined they often display new, unanticipated properties, making efforts to design new materials little more than guesswork. To make that process more predictable, scientists have produced a system to represent band structures — energy bands, similar to electron orbital, that run through solids — to quickly understand the properties of a given material.

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