Category Archives: Physics

Video: What is Electricity?

00 Think about it for a minute. Do you really know what electricity is? Does anyone? What is electricity? Electricity is the set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and motion of electric charge. What is an electric charge? It is the physical property of matter that causes it to experience a force when… Read More »

ultra-rare “impossible” quasicrystal found in Russian meteorite

00 A quasicrystal’s atomic structure combines the symmetrical properties of a crystal and the chaos of an amorphous solid. Originating in outer space, these crystals aren’t just incredible because of how rare they are – their atomic structure is so peculiar, for decades their existence was dismissed as “impossible”, and they cost the scientist who… Read More »

Video: Is Anything Real?

00 This video includes a nice explanation of what we currently think memories are: the result of strengthening of connections between nerve cells.

Oldest star in Universe discovered

00 Astronomers in Australia have found the oldest known star in the universe, a discovery that may re-write our understanding of the universe directly following the Big Bang. The team from Australian National University (ANU) say that the star, located around 6,000 light years away from Earth, is roughly 13.6 billion years old. This means… Read More »

Carbon’s new champion: Theorists calculate atom-thick carbyne chains may be strongest material ever

00 Rice University researchers have determined from first-principle calculations that carbyne would be the strongest material yet discovered. The carbon-atom chains would be difficult to make but would be twice as strong as two-dimensional graphene sheets. (Image Credit: Vasilii Artyukhov/Rice University) Carbyne will be the strongest of a new class of microscopic materials if and… Read More »

Research team confirms existence of Higgs boson elementary particle

00 An experiment conducted by an international research team has confirmed the existence of Higgs boson, which is widely believed to grant mass to substances in the universe, establishing the standard theory of the elementary particle. The team, comprising researchers from the University of Tokyo, the High-Energy Accelerator Research Organization and overseas research institutes, will… Read More »

German Scientists Freeze Light for a Minute

00 It turns out that the fastest known thing in the universe, light, can in fact be stopped. A German team of scientists have successfully stopped light from traveling for a whole minute. The record-breaking event could be a major breakthrough in the field of quantum memory storage. So how did scientists freeze light for… Read More »

Researchers demonstrate “accelerator on a chip”

00 In an advance that could dramatically shrink particle accelerators for science and medicine, researchers used a laser to accelerate electrons at a rate 10 times higher than conventional technology in a nanostructured glass chip smaller than a grain of rice. The achievement was reported today inNature by a team including scientists from the U.S.… Read More »

Scientists create never-before-seen form of matter

00 Harvard and MIT scientists are challenging the conventional wisdom about light, and they didn’t need to go to a galaxy far, far away to do it. Working with colleagues at the Harvard-MIT Center for Ultracold Atoms, a group led by Harvard Professor of Physics Mikhail Lukin and MIT Professor of Physics Vladan Vuletic have… Read More »

Maybe Space-Time is Just an Illusion

00 Via Alex Tabarrok, Quanta magazine reports on a decades-long effort that has recently produced a radically simplified way of calculating quantum interactions. Instead of adding up millions or billions of terms, you simply sum the volumes of the pieces of a multi-dimensional object called a “positive Grassmannian.” Its inventors call this object an amplituhedron:… Read More »

Why Does Popcorn Pop?

00 A popcorn kernel is a cereal grain seed. It is made up of four major physical structures: 1 The Pericarp seed coat or outer hull: a hard outer thin covering. 2 The Endosperm: starchy part that forms the bulk of the kernel and consists almost entirely of starch along with smaller amounts of protein,… Read More »

Theoretical Element 115 Exists, Study Confirms

00 Researchers confirm the existence of this synthetic element in a new accelerator study. Will it be enough to give ununpentium official recognition and a new name? At the bottom right corner of the periodic table of elements, there are a handful of boxes that illustrators often color gray. The International Union of Pure and… Read More »

See-Through Solar Film Gets Big Efficiency Boost

00 A novel, transparent, two-layer solar film — possessing an impressive efficiency conversion of 7.3% — has been created by researchers at the University of California–Los Angeles. This is about double the transparent solar cell efficiency the researchers had previously achieved. The solar film can be placed on windows, buildings, sunroofs, electronics displays, etc; harvesting… Read More »

Light completely stopped for a record-breaking minute

00 The fastest thing in the universe has come to a complete stop for a record-breaking minute. At full pelt, light would travel about 18 million kilometres in that time – that’s more than 20 round trips to the moon. “One minute is extremely, extremely long,” says Thomas Krauss at the University of St Andrews,… Read More »

Light-emitting nanotubes get brighter with zero-dimensional states

00 Carbon nanotubes have the potential to function as light-emitting devices, which could lead to a variety of nanophotonics applications. However, nanotubes currently have a low luminescence quantum yield, typically around 1%, which is restricted by their one-dimensional nature. In a new study, scientists have demonstrated that artificially modifying the dimensionality of carbon nanotubes by… Read More »

King Midas in space? Rare star collision produces gold.

00 King Midas in Brides and grooms have stars not only in their eyes, but also in their wedding bands, scientists have found. Researchers at Harvard University say they have observed an unusual astronomical event that sends gold flying into space. A similar event could have been responsible for the glittering metal’s presence on Earth.… Read More »

Quantum-Tunneling Computers: Answers faster than light?

00 … Nerval’s Lobster writes “The powerful, reliable combination of transistors and semiconductors in computer processors could give way to systems built on the way electrons misbehave, all of it contained in circuits that warp even the most basic rules of physics. Rather than relying on a predictable flow of electrons that appear to know… Read More »

How to fit 1,000TB of data onto a 12cm optical disc

00 Just before the weekend I read about a new technique which can be used to shoehorn around 1,000TB of data onto a “DVD disc”. This is quite a feat and it was achieved by circumnavigating some laws of physics with a technique which uses two different coloured light beams to selectively cancel each other… Read More »

Video: Chladni Figures: Amazing Resonance Experiment

00 Warning: Turn your volume way down during this entire video. The sound that produces the patterns is loud enough to cause permanent hearing damage. … This demonstration is by a prolific YouTube user who goes by the handle brusspup. I’ve been enjoying his amazing visual illusions for a few years – and I’m not… Read More »

First-ever high-resolution images of a molecule as it breaks and reforms chemical bonds

00 When Felix Fischer of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) set out to develop nanostructures made of graphene using a new, controlled approach to chemical reactions, the first result was a surprise: spectacular images of individual carbon atoms and the bonds between them. “We weren’t thinking about making beautiful… Read More »

Quantum gravity takes singularity out of black holes

00 Falling into a black hole may not be as final as it seems. Apply a quantum theory of gravity to these bizarre objects and the all-crushing singularity at their core disappears. In its place is something that looks a lot like an entry point to another universe. Most immediately, that could help resolve the… Read More »

Scientists transform cement into liquid metal

00 It’s not the same as turning lead into gold, but scientists at the Illinois-based Argonne National Laboratory and the Japan Synchrotron Radiation Research Institute/SPring-8 have developed a method for turning cement into a liquid metal semiconductor. The process sounds like a mad scientist’s invention. It involves equipment like an aerodynamic levitator and a carbon… Read More »

“Quantum microscope” peers into the hydrogen atom

00 The first direct observation of the orbital structure of an excited hydrogen atom has been made by an international team of researchers. The observation was made using a newly developed “quantum microscope”, which uses photoionization microscopy to visualize the structure directly. The team’s demonstration proves that “photoionization microscopy”, which was first proposed more than… Read More »

Microscopic Flowers Created with Chemistry

00 They look for all the world like a collection of flowers bursting into life. Yet in fact, these are microscopic crystals grown in a Harvard laboratory. Measuring just microns across, they were created to assemble themselves a molecule at a time. The team say the work, carried out on glass slides, is able to… Read More »

Will Antimatter Cause Antigravity?

00 Scientists are hoping the experiment will teach them more about how the universe developed after the Big Bang.Physicists with ALPHA Collaboration research group are trying to figure out how antimatter interacts with gravity, and if it produces “antigravity,” says the group’s founder, Jeffrey Hangst. Their experiment mirrors the way Sir Isaac Newton came up… Read More »