metWho could forget the scene in Terminator 2: Judgement Day where the shape-shifting T-1000 reassembles itself from thousands of blobs of molten metal? Researchers from North Carolina State University (NCSU) have taken the first steps to such science fiction becoming reality by developing a way to control the surface tension of liquid metals with the application of very low voltages. This may offer opportunities in a new field of morphing electronic circuits, self-healing electronics, or – one day – maybe even self-assembling terminator-style robots. The liquid metal used by the researchers was an alloy of gallium and indium. Gallium is liquid just above room temperature at about 29° C (84° F), while Indium has a much higher melting point at around 156° C (312° F), yet when mixed together, they form an alloy that is liquid at room temperature. In other words, a eutectic alloy – one that is composed of metals with disparate melting points that, when combined, melt as a whole at a specific temperature. More