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Keyword: physics

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  • How Physics Lost Its Fizz: Physics is now just recycling once-exciting ideas

    01/21/2016 12:52:39 PM PST · by Trumpinator · 57 replies
    blogs.scientificamerican.com ^ | January 18, 2016 | John Horgan
    How Physics Lost Its Fizz Physics, which decades ago seemed capable of answering the deepest mysteries of existence, is now just recycling once-exciting ideas By John Horgan on January 18, 2016 For a lapsed Catholic like me, physics represented a kind of scientific theology, an empirical, rational way of probing the mysteries of existence. Physicists were discerning resonances between the smallest and largest scales of reality and spinning out astonishing conjectures about our universe and even other universes. ...snip... Physicists' fantasies about parallel and virtual realms are not just stale. Increasingly, they strike me as escapist and even irresponsible, because...
  • Quantum Weirdness Now a Matter of Time

    01/19/2016 5:20:28 PM PST · by Reeses · 37 replies
    Quanta Magazine ^ | January 19, 2016 | George Musser
    Bizarre quantum bonds connect distinct moments in time, suggesting that quantum links - not space-time - constitute the fundamental structure of the universe. ... A field is a highly entangled system. Different parts of it are mutually correlated: A random fluctuation of the field in one place will be matched by a random fluctuation in another. ("Parts" here refers both to regions of space and to spans of time.) Even a perfect vacuum, which is defined as the absence of particles, will still have quantum fields. And these fields are always vibrating. Space looks empty because the vibrations cancel each...
  • Why String Theory Is Not Science

    12/24/2015 6:40:17 AM PST · by C19fan · 43 replies
    Forbes ^ | December 23, 2015 | Ethan Siegel
    There are a lot of different ways to define science, but perhaps one that everyone can agree on is that it’s a process by which: 1.knowledge about the natural world or a particular phenomenon is gathered, 2.a testable hypothesis is put forth concerning a natural, physical explanation for that phenomenon, 3.that hypothesis is then tested and either validated or falsified, 4.and an overarching framework — or scientific theory — is constructed to explain the hypothesis and that makes predictions about other phenomena, 5.which is then tested further, and either validated, in which case new phenomena to test are sought (back...
  • Physicists figure out how to retrieve information from a black hole

    12/23/2015 1:17:47 PM PST · by Red Badger · 51 replies
    sciencemag.org ^ | 23 December 2015 3:15 pm | By Adrian Cho
    Black holes earn their name because their gravity is so strong not even light can escape from them. Oddly, though, physicists have come up with a bit of theoretical sleight of hand to retrieve a speck of information that's been dropped into a black hole. The calculation touches on one of the biggest mysteries in physics: how all of the information trapped in a black hole leaks out as the black hole "evaporates." Many theorists think that must happen, but they don't know how. Unfortunately for them, the new scheme may do more to underscore the difficulty of the larger...
  • Black holes can grow to 50 billion times the mass of the Sun... and then stop

    12/21/2015 1:15:25 PM PST · by Red Badger · 32 replies
    www.ibtimes.co.uk ^ | December 21, 2015 12:30 GMT | By Matt Atherton
    Black holes can only grow if they have a gas disc to feed on NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Flickr ======================================================================================================== Black holes can only grow to 50 billion times the mass of the Sun, before they lose their only source of 'food' and stop growing. Scientists discovered that black holes have a size limit, as when it gets so big, the gas which feeds the great void loses its energy, and falls into the unknown. A researcher from the University of Leicester analysed the disc of gas which surrounds supermassive black holes at the centre of galaxies. He found that...
  • Potential New Particle Shows Up at the LHC, Thrilling and Confounding Physicists

    12/20/2015 12:36:01 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 28 replies
    Scientific American ^ | December 16, 2015 | Clara Moskowitz
    The gigantic accelerator in Europe has produced hints of an exotic particle that defies the known laws of physics. A little wiggle on a graph, representing just a handful of particles, has set the world of physics abuzz. Scientists at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Switzerland, the largest particle accelerator on Earth, reported yesterday that their machine might have produced a brand new particle not included in the established laws of particle physics known as the Standard Model. Their results, based on the data collected from April to November after the LHC began colliding protons at nearly twice the...
  • What Are Quantum Gravity's Alternatives To String Theory?

    12/19/2015 7:19:11 AM PST · by C19fan · 19 replies
    Fortune ^ | December 17, 2015 | Ethan Slegel
    The Universe we know and love — with Einstein’s General Relativity as our theory of gravity and quantum field theories of the other three forces — has a problem that we don’t often talk about: it’s incomplete, and we know it. Einstein’s theory on its own is just fine, describing how matter-and-energy relate to the curvature of space-and-time. Quantum field theories on their own are fine as well, describing how particles interact and experience forces. Normally, the quantum field theory calculations are done in flat space, where spacetime isn’t curved. We can do them in the curved space described by...
  • A Fight for the Soul of Science (physicists, philosophers debate boundaries of science)

    12/17/2015 10:01:58 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 28 replies
    Quanta Magazine ^ | 12/16/15 | Natalie Wolchover
    A Fight for the Soul of Science String theory, the multiverse and other ideas of modern physics are potentially untestable. At a historic meeting in Munich, scientists and philosophers asked: should we trust them anyway? Laetitia Vancon for Quanta MagazinePhysicists George Ellis (center) and Joe Silk (right) at Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich on Dec. 7. By: Natalie WolchoverDecember 16, 2015 Comments (17) Share this: facebooktwitterredditmail PDF Print Physicists typically think they “need philosophers and historians of science like birds need ornithologists,” the Nobel laureate David Gross told a roomful of philosophers, historians and physicists last week in Munich, Germany,...
  • Black holes have a size limit of 50 billion suns

    12/10/2015 8:44:24 PM PST · by MtnClimber · 27 replies
    New Scientist ^ | 10 Dec, 2015 | Joshua Sokol,
    Even gluttons can't eat forever. When black holes at the hearts of galaxies swell to 50 billion times the mass of our sun, they may lose the discs of gas they use as cosmic feedlots. Most galaxies host a supermassive black hole at their centre. Around this is a region of space where gas settles into an orbiting disc. The gas can lose energy and fall inwards, feeding the black hole. But these discs are known to be unstable and prone to crumbling into stars. Theoretically, a black hole could grow so big that it swallows up the stable part...
  • Death Star: NASA engineer reveals Empire could have re-purposed asteroid to create ultimate weapon

    12/10/2015 8:18:22 PM PST · by rickmichaels · 21 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | December 11, 2015 | Cheyenne MacDonald
    A NASA engineer has proposed a method to efficiently build a Death Star, and it's not the way the Empire would have done it. Instead of constructing the massive weapon from nothing, by shooting materials out from a planet, an asteroid could be used to provide all of the essential building blocks. The Empire is doing things the hard way; using an asteroid to build a Death Star would require much less work, as metals and organic compounds would already be there.
  • Spacecraft Launches to Test the Hunt for Ripples in the Fabric of Spacetime

    12/03/2015 5:00:08 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 23 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | on December 3, 2015 | Nancy Atkinson
    The European Space Agency successfully launched the LISA Pathfinder, a spacecraft designed to demonstrate technology for observing gravitational waves in space. The launch took place at Europe’s spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana on a Vega rocket, at 4:04 GMT on December 3, (10:04 pm EST Dec 2), 2015. Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of spacetime, which were predicted by Albert Einstein in his General Theory of Relativity. So far, because they are extremely tiny and incredibly faint, gravitational waves have proved to be elusive. The technology needed to detect them is highly sensitive and therefore has been difficult...
  • Lift-off for Lisa Pathfinder! Mission to detect Einstein's gravitational waves successfully [tr]

    12/03/2015 6:10:56 AM PST · by C19fan · 4 replies
    UK Daily Mail ^ | December 3, 2015 | Richard Gray
    A Vega rocket carrying the European Space Agency's Lisa Pathfinder has finally blasted into orbit after being delayed by a 'technical issue'. The rocket, with the probe mounted on top, lifted off earlier today in Kourou, French Guiana, to begin its mission to hunt for gravitational waves in space. Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of space-time, predicted a century ago by Albert Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, but until now have proved elusive. The rocket had been expected to launch on 2 December - exactly 100 years since Einstein published his theory - but 'technical issues' delayed it...
  • 'Material universe' yields surprising new particle

    11/25/2015 12:22:07 PM PST · by Red Badger · 14 replies
    phys.org ^ | November 25, 2015 | Provided by: Princeton University
    These tungsten ditelluride crystals behave as insulators for current applied in some directions and as conductors for current applied in other directions. The researchers found that this behavior is due to a newly theorized particle, the type-II Weyl fermion. Credit: Wudi Wang and N. Phuan Ong, Princeton University --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- An international team of researchers has predicted the existence of a new type of particle called the type-II Weyl fermion in metallic materials. When subjected to a magnetic field, the materials containing the particle act as insulators for current applied in some directions and as conductors for current applied in other...
  • The Most Mind-Bending Fact I Learned in Physics

    11/19/2015 10:56:52 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 64 replies
    Real Clear Science ^ | 11/2015 | Tom Hartsfield
    Physics is built out of philosophically fascinating ideas. Or, at least, ideas that fascinate us as physicists. We are often moved to reverentially proclaim the beauty of various concepts and theories. Sometimes this beauty makes sense to other people (we're made of star stuff) and other times it's opaque (Frobenius manifolds in psuedo-Euclidean spaces). I have my own personal favorite idea. It arises from the philosophically fantastic (but mathematically moderate) workings of Einstein's relativity theory. The theory of special relativity holds that time and space are not separate entities, each operating on its own; rather they are intimately and inextricably...
  • How To Go To Space (made simple) -- 3min YouTube video

    11/12/2015 1:53:00 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 6 replies
    YouTube ^ | 11/10/15
    Click Here
  • What If Everyone JUMPED At Once?

    10/29/2015 1:43:27 PM PDT · by WhiskeyX · 40 replies
    YouTube ^ | Aug 18, 2012 | Vsauce
    What If Everyone JUMPED At Once? Geek & Sundry
  • A particle purely made of nuclear force [Gluons]

    10/15/2015 1:38:34 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 24 replies
    phys.org ^ | October 13, 2015 | Provided by: Vienna University of Technology
    Nucleons consist (left) of quarks (matter particles) and gluons (force particles). A glueball (right) is made up purely of gluons. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Scientists at TU Wien (Vienna) have calculated that the meson f0(1710) could be a very special particle the long-sought-after glueball, a particle composed of pure force. For decades, scientists have been looking for so-called "glueballs". Now it seems they have been found at last. A glueball is an exotic particle, made up entirely of gluons the "sticky" particles that keep nuclear particles together. Glueballs are unstable and can only be detected indirectly, by analysing their decay. This...
  • Two physicists earn Nobel Prize for discovering neutrino's chameleon-like powers

    10/06/2015 5:24:45 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 7 replies
    Los Angeles Times ^ | 10/06/2015 | Amina Khan
    The 2015 Nobel Prize in physics has gone to two scientists for discovering the quirky, shape-shifting behavior of neutrinos tiny ghostlike particles that fill the universe, traveling close to the speed of light. Takaaki Kajita of the Super-Kamiokande experiment at the University of Tokyo and Arthur B. McDonald of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory at Queens University in Canada were awarded the physics Nobel on Tuesday for their discovery that neutrinos oscillate and thus, that they must have mass. Small as these particles are, the scientists' insight that neutrinos are chameleon-like particles, switching identities in an instant ...
  • Near term Commercial Fusion Power Possible -

    09/25/2015 6:28:38 PM PDT · by ckilmer · 59 replies
    nextbigfuture.com ^ | 9/25/2015 | brian wang
    Near term Commercial Fusion Power Possible - Laser induced fusion of ultra-dense deuterium with double net energy gain has been produced and gain of 20 times is within reach energy, fusion, laser, materials, nuclear, physics, science Facebook Twitter linkedin google Reddit Researchers at the University of Gothenburg and the University of Iceland are researching a new type of nuclear fusion process. This produces almost no neutrons but instead fast, heavy electrons (muons), since it is based on nuclear reactions in ultra-dense heavy hydrogen (deuterium). The new fusion process can take place in relatively small laser-fired fusion reactors fuelled by heavy...
  • Are We Living In A Black Hole?

    09/05/2015 2:41:01 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 39 replies
    One Universe at a Time ^ | 9/4/15 | Brian Koberlein
    Are We Living In A Black Hole? // / Heres an idea, what if the universe and everything we see around us is actually inside a black hole?Whenever Im asked this question, what folks typically have in mind is that the universe began as an infinitely dense point, just like the singularity of a black hole, and because of cosmic expansion theres a limit to how far we can observe, so maybe thats like the event horizon. While its an interesting idea, things arent quite so simple.To begin with, the universe did not begin with an explosion from a...
  • Scientists Confirm the Existence of Cosmic Neutrinos

    08/22/2015 5:57:13 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 13 replies
    Gizmodo ^ | August 20, 2015 | Maddie Stone and The Guardian
    A team of Antarctic scientists has just verified the existence of cosmic neutrinos tiny, energetic particles that might hail from far reaches of the Milky Way and beyond. And these ghostly little flecks of matter could hold the key to some of the deepest mysteries of the cosmos. High-energy cosmic neutrinos are thought to be produced by some of the universes most violent agents, including black holes, supernovae, and the energetic cores of galaxies. Unchanged as they zip across space and time, these particles may represent something of an intergalactic breadcrumb trail, pointing us in the direction of any...
  • No, German Scientists Have Not Confirmed the Impossible EMDrive

    07/29/2015 10:27:45 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 35 replies
    io9.com ^ | 7/28/15 10:40am | George Dvorsky
    Two German researchers claim they have produced measurable amounts of thrust using a copy of NASAs controversial EMDrive. Its a result that has many people talking, but dont plan your trip to the to the Alpha Centauri system just yetthe experts we spoke with are all highly skeptical of the study and its findings. As reported in Hacked, the details of the new study are being presented this week by Martin Tajmar, a professor and chair for Space Systems at the Dresden University of Technology, and co-author G. Fiedler, at the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics Propulsion and Energy...
  • Scientists have finally discovered massless particles, and they could revolutionise electronics

    07/25/2015 5:31:56 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 75 replies
    Science Alert ^ | July 23, 2015 | Fiona MacDonald
    They can theoretically carry charge 1,000 times faster than ordinary electrons. After 85 years of searching, researchers have confirmed the existence of a massless particle called the Weyl fermion for the first time ever. With the unique ability to behave as both matter and anti-matter inside a crystal, this strange particle can create electrons that have no mass. The discovery is huge, not just because we finally have proof that these elusive particles exist, but because it paves the way for far more efficient electronics, and new types of quantum computing. "Weyl fermions could be used to solve the traffic...
  • Gravity Simulator

    07/23/2015 12:57:13 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 12 replies
    Click here
  • Einstein saves the quantum cat

    06/19/2015 7:37:01 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 30 replies
    Phys.Org ^ | 063-16-2015 | Provided by University of Vienna
    Einstein's theory of time and space will celebrate its 100th anniversary this year. Even today it captures the imagination of scientists. In an international collaboration, researchers from the universities of Vienna, Harvard and Queensland have now discovered that this world-famous theory can explain yet another puzzling phenomenon: the transition from quantum behavior to our classical, everyday world. Their results are published in the journal Nature Physics. In 1915 Albert Einstein formulated the theory of general relativity which fundamentally changed our understanding of gravity. He explained gravity as the manifestation of the curvature of space and time. Einstein's theory predicts that...
  • Beautiful Mind Mathematician John Nash Replaced Einsteins Theory Of Relativity Days Before Death

    06/01/2015 12:19:56 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 104 replies
    The Inquisitr News ^ | May 30, 2015 | Tara West
    John Forbes Nash Jr. was a mathematical genius who had his life chronicled in the movie A Beautiful Mind. One of Nashs colleagues says that just days before he died in a New York taxi cab accident, he had discussed his latest and possibly most brilliant discovery to date. Mathematician Cdric Villan says that Nash told him that he had replaced Einsteins Theory of Relativity and that the new equation would further explain quantum gravity. The Daily Mail reports that on May 20, 2015, just three days before the tax cab accident that would take his life, Nash spoke to...
  • Advanced Ligo gravitational wave hunt is green lit

    05/20/2015 8:00:08 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 13 replies
    The British Broadcasting Corporation ^ | May 20, 2015 | Jonathan Amos, Science Correspondent
    One of the great physics experiments of our age looks ready to begin its quest.Scientists have held a dedication ceremony to inaugurate the Advanced Ligo facilities in the US. This pair of widely separated laboratories will be hunting for gravitational waves. These ripples in the fabric of space-time are predicted to result from extreme cosmic events, such as the merger of black holes and the explosive demise of giant stars. Confirmation of the waves' existence should open up a new paradigm in astronomy. It is one that would no longer depend on traditional light telescopes to observe and understand phenomena...
  • Quantum physics: What is really real?

    05/20/2015 9:21:49 AM PDT · by Reeses · 46 replies
    nature.com ^ | 20 May 2015 | Zeeya Merali
    Owen Maroney worries that physicists have spent the better part of a century engaging in fraud. Ever since they invented quantum theory in the early 1900s, explains Maroney, who is himself a physicist at the University of Oxford, UK, they have been talking about how strange it is — how it allows particles and atoms to move in many directions at once, for example, or to spin clockwise and anticlockwise simultaneously. But talk is not proof, says Maroney. “If we tell the public that quantum theory is weird, we better go out and test that's actually true,” he says. “Otherwise...
  • Physicists Are Philosophers, Too

    05/12/2015 6:16:56 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 12 replies
    Scientific American ^ | 5/8/15 | Victor J. Stenger, James A. Lindsay and Peter Boghossian
    Physicists Are Philosophers, Too In his final essay the late physicist Victor Stenger argues for the validity of philosophy in the context of modern theoretical physics By Victor J. Stenger, James A. Lindsay and Peter Boghossian | May 8, 2015 The ongoing feud between physicists and philosophers cuts to the heart of what science can tell us about the nature of reality. Editor’s Note: Shortly before his death last August at the age of 79, the noted physicist and public intellectual Victor Stenger worked with two co-authors to pen an article for Scientific American. In it Stenger and co-authors address...
  • Particle Physics On The Cheap

    04/13/2015 1:56:28 PM PDT · by Citizen Zed · 4 replies
    Inside Science ^ | 4-13-2015 | Ben Stein
    Thinking of particle physics experiments may inspire images of huge, multibillion-dollar facilities, such as Europe's Large Hadron Collider. But exploring the secrets of subatomic particles doesn't require a massive financial commitment. Three undergraduate students and their professor have built a particle detector for just a little bit over $500. Their design could help bring particle physics experiments to universities everywhere. The device can detect exotic subatomic particles known as muons, which exist in our midst. Muons are the heavy cousins of electrons, over 200 times greater in mass. When cosmic rays from space smash into molecules in the atmosphere, they...
  • Particle jets reveal the secrets of the most exotic state of matter

    03/15/2015 12:03:33 PM PDT · by samtheman · 18 replies
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/ ^ | March 11, 2015 | The Henryk Niewodniczanski Institute of Nuclear Physics Polish Academy of Sciences
    Shortly following the Big Bang, the Universe was filled with a chaotic primordial soup of quarks and gluons, particles which are now trapped inside of protons and neutrons. Study of this quark-gluon plasma requires the use of the most advanced theoretical and experimental tools. Physicists have taken one crucial step towards a better understanding of the plasma and its properties.
  • Infinity Is a Beautiful Concept And Its Ruining Physics

    02/20/2015 6:01:20 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 94 replies
    Discover Magazine ^ | 2/20/15 | Max Tegmark
    Infinity Is a Beautiful Concept – And It’s Ruining Physics By Max Tegmark | February 20, 2015 9:00 am I was seduced by infinity at an early age. Georg Cantor’s diagonality proof that some infinities are bigger than others mesmerized me, and his infinite hierarchy of infinities blew my mind. The assumption that something truly infinite exists in nature underlies every physics course I’ve ever taught at MIT—and, indeed, all of modern physics. But it’s an untested assumption, which begs the question: Is it actually true?A Crisis in Physics There are in fact two separate assumptions: “infinitely big” and “infinitely...
  • Come out, come out, wherever you are!

    02/04/2015 2:55:51 AM PST · by samtheman · 10 replies
    The Economist ^ | Jan 3, 2015 | The Economist
    IN MARCH, after a two-year shut down for an upgrade, the worlds biggest particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), will reopen for business. The rest of the year will see physicists biting their nailsfor one way or another 2015 will go down as a famous date in their field. Either theoreticians will be proved spectacularly right, and experimenters can move confidently on into the verdant pastures of so-called new physics, engaging in a positive safari of hunting for novel particles, or they will find out, to exaggerate only slightly, that they do not understand how the universe really works.
  • The supersymmetry calamity

    01/31/2015 9:06:49 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 25 replies
    Winnipeg Free Press ^ | 1/31/15 | Colin Gillespie
    Enlarge Image It sounds esoteric, like an episode of The Big Bang Theory, and maybe someday it will be. But even in the fields of physics, supersymmetry is esoteric. What is supersymmetry? What is the calamity? Why should you care?What it is... is an idea: particular superheroes! Here's their story. The standard model is the crown jewel of physics. All you need to know is it describes subatomic particles and the forces that affect them. It has 16 kinds of particles: six quarks, six leptons and four bosons. Lately, headlines tell us add the Higgs. The standard model depicts...
  • Particles accelerate without a push (But Newton's not dead)

    01/25/2015 10:48:22 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 8 replies
    MIT News Office ^ | 1/20/15 | David L. Chandler
    New analysis shows a way to self-propel subatomic particles, extend the lifetime of unstable isotopes. David L. Chandler | MIT News Office January 20, 2015 Press Inquiries Some physical principles have been considered immutable since the time of Isaac Newton: Light always travels in straight lines. No physical object can change its speed unless some outside force acts on it. Not so fast, says a new generation of physicists: While the underlying physical laws haven’t changed, new ways of “tricking” those laws to permit seemingly impossible actions have begun to appear. For example, work that began in 2007 proved that...
  • Epic cosmic radio burst finally seen in real time

    01/20/2015 10:42:42 AM PST · by Red Badger · 25 replies
    www.newscientist.com ^ | 08:00 19 January 2015 | by Michael Slezak
    A gigantic but fleeting burst of radio waves has been caught in the act for the first time, helping to narrow down the vast array of things that might cause them. Figuring out what these fast radio bursts are or where they come from could help answer some of the biggest cosmological questions. They last about a millisecond but give off as much energy as the sun does in a day, all seemingly in a tight band of radio-frequency waves. Their source is a mystery, but whatever causes them must be huge, cataclysmic and up to 5.5 billion light years...
  • The Chameleon in the Vacuum Chamber (physics, dark energy)

    01/14/2015 10:38:37 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 10 replies
    The Chameleon in the Vacuum Chamber A new proposal for an experiment that could test the presence of a fifth force with unprecedented precision. It still amazes me that everything I see is made up of only some few dozen particles and four interactions. For all we know. But maybe this isnt all there is? Physicists have been speculating for a while now that our universe needs a fifth fundamental force, one responsible for the phenomenon of dark energy, to maintain the observed expansion rate. Although this idea has been around for more than a decade, it has turned...
  • Quantum physics just got less complicated

    12/19/2014 11:34:49 AM PST · by LibWhacker · 76 replies
    PhysOrg ^ | 12/19/14
    Here's a nice surprise: quantum physics is less complicated than we thought. An international team of researchers has proved that two peculiar features of the quantum world previously considered distinct are different manifestations of the same thing. The result is published 19 December in Nature Communications. Patrick Coles, Jedrzej Kaniewski, and Stephanie Wehner made the breakthrough while at the Centre for Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore. They found that 'wave-particle duality' is simply the quantum 'uncertainty principle' in disguise, reducing two mysteries to one."The connection between uncertainty and wave-particle duality comes out very naturally when you...
  • Fun with Vortex Rings in the Pool

    12/19/2014 12:56:52 AM PST · by LibWhacker · 13 replies
    YouTube ^ | 12/1714 | PhysicsGirl
    Video here.
  • A New Physics Theory of Life

    12/10/2014 2:18:28 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 45 replies
    Quanta Magazine ^ | 1/22/14 | Natalie Wolchover
    A New Physics Theory of Life Katherine Taylor for Quanta MagazineJeremy England, a 31-year-old physicist at MIT, thinks he has found the underlying physics driving the origin and evolution of life. By: Natalie WolchoverJanuary 22, 2014 Comments (151) print Why does life exist?Popular hypotheses credit a primordial soup, a bolt of lightning and a colossal stroke of luck. But if a provocative new theory is correct, luck may have little to do with it. Instead, according to the physicist proposing the idea, the origin and subsequent evolution of life follow from the fundamental laws of nature and should be as...
  • Proof of Life

    12/07/2014 8:01:54 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 5 replies
    PJ Media's Belmont Club ^ | December 7, 2014 | Richard Fernandez
    The intellectual role that used to be occupied by theology is now largely filled by science fiction. Wikipedia lists only a dozen of possibly hundreds of books where writers, some of them practicing mathematicians or scientists themselves, examine the consequences of our current understanding of the universe. The familiar, everyday world that we know isnt what it seems. It is actually a strange place. On large scales it isnt governed by common sense Newtonian physics but by the paradoxes of relativity. At very small scales, perhaps at its foundation, it is governed by quantum phenomena, which is stranger still. Arthur...
  • Dark matter could be seen in GPS time glitches

    11/19/2014 4:56:35 AM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 17 replies
    New Scientist ^ | November 17, 2014 | Hal Hodson
    GPS has a new job. It does a great job of telling us our location, but the network of hyper-accurate clocks in space could get a fix on something far more elusive: dark matter. Dark matter makes up 80 per cent of the universe's matter but scarcely interacts with ordinary matter. A novel particle is the most popular candidate, but Andrei Derevianko at the University of Nevada, Reno, and Maxim Pospelov at the Perimeter Institute in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada propose that kinks or cracks in the quantum fields that permeate the universe could be the culprit. If they are right,...
  • String Theory: Now Circling the Drain

    10/30/2014 7:58:13 AM PDT · by C19fan · 61 replies
    Real Clear Science ^ | October 30, 2014 | Tom Hartsfield
    The largest physics experiment ever built is now testing the nature of reality. String theory, supersymmetry and other theories beyond the Standard Model are under scrutiny. More than 10,000 people have been involved. Total cost is nearing $10 billion. This, of course, is the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), which helped discover the Higgs Boson. Simultaneously, the ACME experiment, run by a team of less than 50, built for a few million dollars (and much, much smaller), has created a more precise test of these advanced theoeries. This experiment hinges on an extremely painstaking and precise method to picture the shape...
  • New Exotic Particle Could Help Explain What Holds Matter Together

    10/14/2014 9:40:48 PM PDT · by lbryce · 54 replies
    Live Science ^ | October 14, 2014 | Kelly Dickerson
    A new exotic particle has been hiding out amidst the gobs of data collected by the world's largest atom smasher, physicists have discovered. The new particle, called Ds3*, is a meson a type of unstable particle made of one quark and one antiquark. Quarks are subatomic particles and are the most basic building blocks of matter that make up protons and neutrons. They're held together by the strong interaction, or strong force, that is one of the four fundamental forces in nature. (Electromagnetism, weak interaction and gravity are the other three.) No stable form of matter would exist without...
  • Astrophysicists Reveal Amount of Dark Matter is Less Than Previously Thought

    10/10/2014 1:00:47 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 68 replies
    SciTech Daily ^ | 10/09/2014 | Source: International Center for Radio Astronomy Research
    New research from the University of Western Australia reveals that the amount of dark matter in the Milky Way is half as much as previously thought. Australian astronomers used a method developed almost 100 years ago to discover that the weight of dark matter in our own galaxy is 800,000,000,000 (or 8 x 1011) times the mass of the Sun. They probed the edge of the Milky Way, looking closely, for the first time, at the fringes of the galaxy about 5 million billion kilometers from Earth. Astrophysicist Dr Prajwal Kafle, from The University of Western Australia node of the...
  • Our quantum problem

    09/29/2014 4:34:42 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 46 replies
    Aeon ^ | 1/28/14 | Adrian Kent
    In 1909, Ernest Rutherford, Hans Geiger and Ernest Marsden took a piece of radium and used it to fire charged particles at a sheet of gold foil. They wanted to test the then-dominant theory that atoms were simply clusters of electrons floating in little seas of positive electrical charge (the so-called ‘plum pudding’ model). What came next, said Rutherford, was ‘the most incredible event that has ever happened to me in my life’. Despite the airy thinness of the foil, a small fraction of the particles bounced straight back at the source – a result, Rutherford noted, ‘as incredible as...
  • Air Show Math

    09/14/2014 8:19:53 PM PDT · by rey · 72 replies
    Vanity | 14 Sept. 2014 | Rey
    I home school a young girl. In years past, we have gone to the local air show and done such things as measure the tops and bottom of wings and rotos and figure the ratio or difference between the area of the top of the wing versus the bottom and estimated which wings had more lift than others. We measure how much area the wheels occupied on the ground and consulted with the crew chief what the tire pressure was and calculated the weight of the plane. In years past we were able to see F18s form a vapor cone...
  • Schrdinger's cat caught on quantum film

    08/27/2014 7:37:18 PM PDT · by Sparklite · 68 replies
    New Scientist ^ | 27 August 2014 | Penny Sarchet
    Schrdinger's cat is the poster child for quantum weirdness. Now it has been immortalised in a portrait created by one of the theory's strangest consequences: quantum entanglement. These images were generated using a cat stencil and entangled photons. The really spooky part is that the photons used to generate the image never interacted with the stencil, while the photons that illuminated the stencil were never seen by the camera.
  • The Quantum Cheshire Cat: Can neutrons be located at a different place than their own spin?

    08/10/2014 8:20:11 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 13 replies
    PhysOrg ^ | 7/29/14
    The Quantum Cheshire Cat: Can neutrons be located at a different place than their own spin? Jul 29, 2014 Enlarge The basic idea of the Quantum Cheshire Cat: In an interferometer, an object is separated from one if its properties -- like a cat, moving on a different path than its own grin. Credit: TU Vienna / Leon Filter The Cheshire Cat featured in Lewis Caroll's novel "Alice in Wonderland" is a remarkable creature: it disappears, leaving its grin behind. Can an object be separated from its properties? It is possible in the quantum world. In an experiment, neutrons travel...
  • NASA: New "impossible" engine works, could change space travel forever

    08/02/2014 12:16:09 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 73 replies
    Gizmodo ^ | August 1, 2014 | Jesus Diaz
    Until yesterday, every physicist was laughing at this engine and its inventor, Roger Shawyer. It's called the EmDrive and everyone said it was impossible because it goes against classical mechanics. But the fact is that the quantum vacuum plasma thruster works and scientists can't explain why. Shawyer's engine is extremely light and simple. It provides a thrust by "bouncing microwaves around in a closed container." The microwaves are generated using electricity that can be provided by solar energy. No propellant is necessary, which means that this thrusters can work forever unless a hardware failure occurs. If real, this would be...