A saffron-coloured crystal could provide a step towards greener electronics.
Some types of low-power computer memory store information using metals that are ferroelectric, meaning they form positive and negative poles when placed in an electric field. However, many of the more common metals used are either rare or toxic.
Now Sachio Horiuchi at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Ibaraki, Japan, and colleagues have discovered ferroelectric behaviour in crystalline croconic acid, which contains just carbon, oxygen and hydrogen.
(via Atom Jack)