Watch the first ever video of a chemical bond breaking and forming

metal bonds

Chemical bonding is one of chemistry’s most fundamental concepts

Toshiyuki Shirai/EyeEm/Getty Images

A chemical bond between two metal atoms has been filmed breaking and forming for the first time – something scientists say they only dreamed of seeing. Watching this happen in real time “was absolutely unbelievable”, says Andrei Khlobystov at the University of Nottingham, UK, who led the team that recorded it.

“We were very excited,” says Khlobystov. “We knew exactly what was happening because we recognised this as a chemical process straight away, but it was a surprise because we simply did not expect we would see it at …