World record: 0.01mm nano-snowman

You're looking at the tiniest snowman ever built. Well, it looks like a snowman, but this minuscule model — about a fifth the width of a human hair — is not made out of snow. It's constructed of two tiny tin beads that are usually used to calibrate an electron microscope, and welded together with platinum.

It's built by David Cox, a nanotech expert at the Quantum Detection Group of Britain's National Physical Laboratory. He's accustomed to working with such astonishingly small objects, and used his nano-particle manipulation tools to demonstrate the astonishing accuracy of his work.

He bathed the snowman in blue light to give us this entertaining, snow-blown image. The remarkable flourish of his smiling snowman is its little happy face, carved into the top orb using a focused ion beam. That's no small feat.

Daily Mail, via Gizmo Watch