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Keyword: physics

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  • Sievert, Gray, Rem, and Rad - Why are there so many different ways to measure radiation exposure?

    03/29/2011 6:39:07 PM PDT · by neverdem · 11 replies
    Slate ^ | March 28, 2011 | Brian Palmer
    Japan's unfolding nuclear disaster has introduced Americans to the confusing practice of measuring radiation exposure. According to some stories, the water nearby to the No. 2 Fukushima reactor has a radioactivity level of 1,000 millisieverts per hour. But other articles describe radiation levels in terms of millirem per year. And a few sources have referred to exposure in terms of millirad or nanogray per hour. Why don't all radiation experts just use the same unit? Because some people are afraid to switch to the metric system. As with distance, weight, and temperature, doses of radiation can be expressed in either...
  • 12-Year-Old Genius Expands Einstein's Theory of Relativity, Thinks He Can Prove It Wrong

    03/29/2011 3:09:31 PM PDT · by Free ThinkerNY · 57 replies
    Time Magazine ^ | March 29, 2011 | Michelle Castillo
    Could Einstein's Theory of Relativity be a few mathematical equations away from being disproved? Jacob Barnett of Hamilton County, Ind., who is just weeks shy of his 13th birthday, thinks so. And, he's got the solutions to prove it. Barnett, who has an IQ of 170, explained his expanded theory of relativity — in a YouTube video. His mother Kristine Barnett, who admittedly flunked math, did what every other mother would do if her genius son started talking mathematical gibberish. She told him to explain the whole thing slowly while she taped her son explaining his take on the theory....
  • The Tevatron

    01/22/2011 8:27:33 AM PST · by La Lydia · 20 replies
    New York Times ^ | January 22, 2010
    In Batavia, Ill. — just west of Chicago — you can walk along trails through a thousand-acre restored prairie filled with rare species like compass plant and rattlesnake master. From the edge of the prairie, you can see, as well, a four-mile ring of concrete and steel. That is the berm above the Tevatron, a high-energy subterranean racetrack for particle beams and the heart of the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, or Fermilab. Since 1983, scientists have been using the Tevatron to create spectacular collisions between subatomic particles whose ghostly traces have helped reveal the fundamental constituents of matter, like the...
  • Really Hot Doin's Discovered on the Sun

    01/10/2011 4:23:39 PM PST · by neverdem · 14 replies · 1+ views
    ScienceNOW ^ | 6 January 2011 | Richard A. Kerr
    Enlarge Image In the eye of the beholder. Sharper views of the sun at a variety of wavelengths are revealing small jets from the solar surface that are helping heat the overlying corona to 1 million˚C. Credit: Bart De Pontieu The mystery of the solar corona is obvious enough. The vanishingly thin atmosphere of the sun—the wispy stuff that can be glimpsed faintly during total solar eclipses—simmers at 1 million˚C, 200 times hotter than the "fire" beneath it. What gives? Researchers now believe they have caught the sun in the act of heating bits of itself to coronal temperatures...
  • The Pioneer Anomaly, a 30-Year-Old Cosmic Mystery, May Be Resolved At Last

    12/16/2010 10:38:08 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 35 replies
    Popular Science ^ | 12/15/2010 | Natalie Wolchover
    Thirty years ago, NASA scientists noticed that two of their spacecraft, Pioneer 10 and Pioneer 11, were veering off course slightly, as if subject to a mysterious, unknown force. In 1998, the wider scientific community got wind of that veering—termed the Pioneer anomaly—and took aim at it with incessant, mind-blowingly detailed scrutiny that has since raised it to the physics equivalent of cult status. Now, though, after spawning close to 1000 academic papers, numerous international conferences, and many entire scientific careers, this beloved cosmic mystery may be on its way out. Slava Turyshev, a scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory...
  • Promises of Electric Vehicles?

    12/11/2010 3:38:13 PM PST · by editor-surveyor · 106 replies
    Contra Costa Times | December 11, 2010 | Vlado Bevc
        Promises of Electric Vehicles?  Vlado BevcSynergy Research Institute, P.O.Box 561, San Ramon, California 94583  The promotion of General Motors Chevy Volt by three mayors (Contra Costa Times, November 6, 1010) merits some mundane evaluation from the energy standpoint. Electric vehicles –with an internal combustion engine assist – are compared to a “typical car” using 13 cents of $3.00/gallon gasoline per mile, that is one that makes 23 miles per gallon. (13/300 = 0.0433 gallon/mile) In a conventional car 25 percent of 37 kWh from a gallon of gasoline gets into traction (because of losses in the engine and drive train)....
  • Mercury serves up a nuclear surprise - The discovery of a new type of fission turns a...

    12/04/2010 10:40:33 AM PST · by neverdem · 31 replies
    Nature News ^ | 1 December 2010 | Eugenie Samuel Reich
    The discovery of a new type of fission turns a tenet of nuclear theory on its head. The observation of an unexpected nuclear reaction by an unstable isotope of the element mercury has thrown up a rare puzzle. The enigma is helping theorists to tackle one of the trickiest problems in physics: developing a more complete model of the atomic nucleus. Nuclear fission, the process in which a nucleus heavier than that of iron breaks into pieces, is generally observed to be symmetric, with the resulting fragments being roughly equal in size. Although instances of asymmetric fission are known, they...
  • Physicists Discover "Violation of a Fundamental Symmetry of the Universe"

    11/04/2010 12:31:54 PM PDT · by lbryce · 110 replies · 1+ views
    i09.com ^ | November 3, 2010 | Staff
    Today physicists announced that they may have found the key to explaining dark matter in the universe. It all has to do with the potential discovery of a "sterile neutrino." According to a release about the new study: Neutrinos are neutral elementary particles born in the radioactive decay of other particles. The known "flavors" of neutrinos are the neutral counterparts of electrons and their heavier cousins, muons and taus. Regardless of a neutrino's original flavor, the particles constantly flip from one type to another in a phenomenon called "neutrino flavor oscillation." An electron neutrino might become a muon neutrino, and...
  • Experts Say CAFE Still Kills Despite Congressional Support

    11/02/2010 11:08:57 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 10 replies
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 11/2/2010 | Jarrett Skorup
    In a questionnaire put out by the Associated Press last week, Michigan congressmen Fred Upton (R-7th District), Mark Schauer (D-8th District) and Gary Peters (D-9th District) all expressed support for "stronger emission controls and fuel efficiency standards on cars and trucks." But some transportation experts say this will lead to higher fatality rates in Michigan and nationally. "There have been many studies showing that these standards will result in more deaths," said Steven Milloy, an adjunct scholar at the Competitive Enterprise Institute and the author of the book Green Hell. "Lighter cars are associated with higher fatalities, period." All three...
  • Breaking curveball too good to be true

    10/14/2010 3:40:23 PM PDT · by bunkerhill7 · 81 replies · 1+ views
    R&D Daily ^ | Thursday, October 14, 2010 | Carl Marziali
    Breaking curveball too good to be true Curveballs curve and fastballs go really fast, but new research suggests that no pitcher can make a curveball “break” or a fastball “rise.”
  • Nobel Prize for physics goes to Manchester University scientists (for creating Graphene)

    10/05/2010 6:31:35 AM PDT · by WebFocus · 21 replies
    The Guardian ^ | 10/05/2010 | Ian Sample
    wo scientists at Manchester University have won the 2010 Nobel prize for physics for creating the thinnest possible flakes of carbon. The news that Andre Geim, 51, and Konstantin Novoselov, 36, had received the 10m Swedish-kronor (Ł1m) prize was announced today by the Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. Novoselov is the youngest Nobel laureate since 1973. Geim and Novoselov were both born in Russia and collaborated as PhD supervisor and student in the Netherlands before moving to Manchester University, one of Britain's top physics institutes. The scientists' breakthrough came from a deceptively simple experiment in 2004 that...
  • Gauging High-Speed Spin Inside a Lilliputian World

    09/28/2010 10:51:41 PM PDT · by neverdem · 7 replies
    NY Times ^ | September 27, 2010 | JOHN MARKOFF
    SAN FRANCISCO — I.B.M. scientists have modified a scanning-tunneling microscope, making it possible to observe dynamic processes inside individual atoms on a time scale one million times faster than has previously been possible. The researchers have perfected a measurement technique in which they use an extremely short voltage pulse to excite an individual atom and then follow with a lower voltage to read the atom’s magnetic state, or spin, shortly afterward. The resulting data produces the equivalent of a high-resolution, high-speed movie of the atom’s behavior. The advance, reported Thursday in the journal Science, has potential applications in fields including...
  • Parting the waters: Computer modeling applies physics to Red Sea escape route (Physics of Moses)

    09/22/2010 7:16:05 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 19 replies
    UCAR ( University Corporation for Atmospheric Research) ^ | 09/22/2010 | Carl Drews and Weiqing Han
    September 21, 2010 BOULDER—The biblical account of the parting of the Red Sea has inspired and mystified people for millennia. A new computer modeling study by researchers at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the University of Colorado at Boulder (CU) shows how the movement of wind as described in the book of Exodus could have parted the waters. The computer simulations show that a strong east wind, blowing overnight, could have pushed water back at a bend where an ancient river is believed to have merged with a coastal lagoon along the Mediterranean Sea. With the water...
  • Ye cannae change the laws of physics (or can you?)

    09/02/2010 7:16:48 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 39 replies · 1+ views
    The Economist ^ | September 2, 2010 | The Economist
    RICHARD FEYNMAN, Nobel laureate and physicist extraordinaire, called it a “magic number” and its value “one of the greatest damn mysteries of physics”. The number he was referring to, which goes by the symbol alpha and the rather more long-winded name of the fine-structure constant, is magic indeed. If it were a mere 4% bigger or smaller than it is, stars would not be able to sustain the nuclear reactions that synthesise carbon and oxygen atoms. One consequence would be that squishy, carbon-based life would not exist. Why alpha takes on the precise value it does, so delicately fine-tuned for...
  • Rethinking Einstein: The end of space-time

    08/09/2010 7:25:58 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 43 replies
    NewScientist ^ | 8/9/10 | Anil Ananthaswamy
    Physicists struggling to reconcile gravity with quantum mechanics have hailed a theory – inspired by pencil lead – that could make it all very simpleIT WAS a speech that changed the way we think of space and time. The year was 1908, and the German mathematician Hermann Minkowski had been trying to make sense of Albert Einstein's hot new idea - what we now know as special relativity - describing how things shrink as they move faster and time becomes distorted. "Henceforth space by itself and time by itself are doomed to fade into the mere shadows," Minkowski proclaimed, "and...
  • "The Spacecraft Flyby Mystery" - Is Dark Matter the Culprit or is There a New Physics ...

    08/03/2010 12:48:20 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 56 replies · 17+ views
    Daily Galaxy ^ | 8/3/10 | Casey Kazan
    When scientists send their spacecraft across the universe, they save fuel by performing “slingshot fly-bys”. This is where, rather than firing up the thrusters, the craft changes its trajectory by harnessing the enormous gravitational pull of a planet. However, this trick has had an unexpected side-effect: it seems to produce a change in speed that no one, since it was first discovered in the early 1990's, can account for. Experts are intrigued by the fact that while the acceleration is tiny and has no significant effect on NASA missions, it holds great interest because no explanation based on conventional physics...
  • Shields up! Force fields could protect Mars missions

    07/30/2010 2:20:57 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 6 replies · 2+ views
    NewScientist ^ | 7/28/10 | Marcus Chown
    Interplanetary adventurers must contend with deadly solar radiation – but the moon's magnetic memories may hold the key to safe space flightBORED on their six-month journey to Mars? Not a bit of it. Whenever the astronauts look out of the window, they find themselves mesmerised by the glowing, shimmering sphere of plasma that surrounds their spacecraft. Hard to believe that the modest electromagnet at the heart of their ship can produce something so beautiful. Not that the magnet's raison d'ętre is aesthetic, of course. Its main function is to keep the astronauts from a slow, horrible death by radiation sickness....
  • Quantum time machine 'allows paradox-free time travel'

    07/26/2010 1:28:23 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 43 replies · 1+ views
    Telegraph ^ | 7/22/10 | Tom Chivers
    Quantum physicists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology believe it is possible to create a time machine which could affect the past without creating a "grandfather paradox".Scientists have for some years been able to 'teleport' quantum states from one place to another. Now Seth Lloyd and his MIT team say that, using the same principles and a further strange quantum effect known as 'postselection', it should be possible to do the same backwards in time. Lloyd told the Technology Review: "It is possible for particles (and, in principle, people) to tunnel from the future to the past."
  • Quantum mechanics flummoxes physicists again

    07/24/2010 5:35:11 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 82 replies · 3+ views
    Nature ^ | 7/22/10 | Jon Cartwright
    A fresh take on a classic experiment makes no progress in unifying quantum mechanics and relativity. If you ever want to get your head around the riddle that is quantum mechanics, look no further than the double-slit experiment. This shows, with perfect simplicity, how just watching a wave or a particle can change its behaviour. The idea is so unpalatable to physicists that they have spent decades trying to find new ways to test it. The latest such attempt, by physicists in Europe and Canada, used a three-slit version — but quantum mechanics won out again. In the standard double-slit...
  • Can Physics Prove the Existence of God?

    07/20/2010 6:09:03 PM PDT · by firerosemom · 73 replies · 1+ views
    Magis Center of Reason and Faith ^ | July 23, 2010 | Spitzer, Robert
    The last few years have seen several books championing agnosticism or atheism making their way into the popular press. These books leave most informed readers quite baffled, because they ignore the vast majority (if not the entirety) of the considerable evidence for theism provided by physics and philosophy during the last few decades. This evidence is capable of grounding reasonable and responsible belief in a super-intelligent, transcendent, creative power that stands at the origins of our universe or any hypothetically postulated multiverse. The main purpose of this book is to give a brief synopsis of this evidence to readers who...
  • A Scientist Takes On Gravity

    07/13/2010 3:35:33 PM PDT · by Mr. Mojo · 47 replies · 1+ views
    NY Times ^ | July 12, 2010 | DENNIS OVERBYE
    By It’s hard to imagine a more fundamental and ubiquitous aspect of life on the Earth than gravity, from the moment you first took a step and fell on your diapered bottom to the slow terminal sagging of flesh and dreams. But what if it’s all an illusion, a sort of cosmic frill, or a side effect of something else going on at deeper levels of reality? So says Erik Verlinde, 48, a respected string theorist and professor of physics at the University of Amsterdam, whose contention that gravity is indeed an illusion has caused a continuing ruckus among physicists,...
  • Large Hadron Collider Rival Tevatron 'Has Found Higgs boson', say Rumours

    07/13/2010 5:25:48 AM PDT · by lbryce · 104 replies · 1+ views
    Telegraph ^ | July 12, 2010 | Tom Chivers
    Tommaso Dorigo, a physicist at the University of Padua, has said in his blog that there has been talk coming out of the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Illinois, that the Higgs has been discovered. The Tevatron, the huge particle accelerator at Fermi - the most powerful in the world after the LHC - is expected to be retired when the CERN accelerator becomes fully operational, but may have struck a final blow before it becomes obsolete. If one form of the rumour is to be believed - and Prof Dorigo is extremely circumspect about it - then it...
  • Obama administration running off a cliff

    06/17/2010 7:44:44 PM PDT · by ancientart · 33 replies · 1,489+ views
    Aberdeen American News ^ | June 17, 2010 | Kenneth C. Blanchard
    According to the First Law of Cartoon Physics, “when a body is suspended in air it will remain suspended until it becomes aware of its situation.” (See William Geoffrey Shotts at gshotts.com.) I would add as a corollary that, a few seconds after the body in question notices that it has run clear off a cliff, it will begin to fall. Wile E. Coyote demonstrated this numerous times in his campaigns against the Road Runner. My high school physics teacher hated cartoons precisely because they taught so many wrong lessons about the physical world. He was right of course. Nonetheless,...
  • New Experiments Rattle Space Weather Research

    06/13/2010 12:13:43 AM PDT · by neverdem · 9 replies · 655+ views
    ScienceNOW ^ | June 9, 2010 | Phil Berardelli
    Enlarge Image Light show. Auroral displays reveal the interaction between the solar wind particles and nitrogen molecules in Earth's upper atmosphere. Credit: NASA Scientists trying to confirm a long-standing model of atmospheric physics have inadvertently shaken one of the foundations of the field. New tests show that the model, used to interpret energy emissions in Earth's upper atmosphere, is seriously flawed. The findings should help researchers build a better picture of how our planet interacts with solar radiation and the particle stream called the solar wind, and they may give a similar boost to studies of the atmosphere on...
  • Dennis Gabor (Inventor of Holography)'s birth celebrated by Google doodle

    06/05/2010 10:29:50 PM PDT · by Innovative · 8 replies · 409+ views
    Telegraph, UK ^ | June 5, 2010 | Telegraph Staff
    The Google doodle has marked the 110th anniversary of the birth of Dennis Gabor, the Nobel Prize winner who invented holography. The Hungarian-born electrical engineer won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1971 for the invention - a system of lensless, three-dimensional photography that has many applications. In 1949 Gabor joined the faculty of London's Imperial College of Science and Technology. In 1958 he became professor of applied electron physics. His other work included research on high-speed oscilloscopes, communication theory, physical optics, and television. Gabor was awarded more than 100 patents.
  • A New Clue to Explain Existence

    05/17/2010 10:08:26 PM PDT · by OldDeckHand · 13 replies · 624+ views
    NY Times ^ | 05/17/10 | Dennis Overbye
    Physicists at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory are reporting that they have discovered a new clue that could help unravel one of the biggest mysteries of cosmology: why the universe is composed of matter and not its evil-twin opposite, antimatter. If confirmed, the finding portends fundamental discoveries at the new Large Hadron Collider outside Geneva, as well as a possible explanation for our own existence.
  • Physics

    05/17/2010 1:58:25 PM PDT · by Sprite518 · 44 replies · 931+ views
    Google Videos ^ | 2003 | Nassim Haramein
    If you are not yet familiar with Nassim Haramein's exciting work, prepare yourself for an exhilarating odyssey into hyperspace and beyond. Haramein, who has spent his lifetime researching fields of physics from quantum theory to relativistic equations and cosmology, will lead you along a fascinating discussion geared to a layman's understanding of the fundamental nature of the universe and creation that includes black holes, gravitational forces, dimensions, and the very structure of space itself - all of which are integral parts of his now-complete Unified Field Theory. Haramein's theory is currently in peer review process for publication in physics journals;...
  • A Look Back at 50 Years of Lasers

    05/15/2010 9:21:57 AM PDT · by SmartInsight · 19 replies · 703+ views
    Fox News ^ | May 15, 2010 | Mike Lucibella
    The first laser light was produced on May 16, 1960 at the Hughes Research Lab in Malibu, California when Theodore Maimen switched on his fist-sized device that flashed a bright red spot onto a photo-detector. Since then, lasers have become smaller, more powerful, and ubiquitous in modern technology. This weekend marks the 50th anniversary of the invention of the first working laser. Today, lasers can be found almost everywhere, from telephone lines to cutting edge scientific research, supermarket scanners, and even cat toys.
  • Are Men Smarter Than Women?

    05/09/2010 6:53:29 AM PDT · by mattstat · 34 replies · 664+ views
    The Question No. That is to say, Yes. But not really. Actually, what we have here is an badly phrased question: just what do we mean when we ask “Are men smarter than women”? We’re asking this again, because (via HotAir) The Daily Mail has asked. And, even though that paper is, as many readers have insisted, England’s equivalent of the New York Post, an article by retired professor Richard Lynn has, as they say in journalism, stirred up controversy. Judging by the comments garnered at the paper and at HotAir, most do not understand the question, or purposely—or willfully—misunderstand...
  • Atom-grabbing 'black hole' created

    04/18/2010 9:20:21 PM PDT · by neverdem · 32 replies · 1,013+ views
    New Scientist ^ | 09 April 2010 | Rachel Courtland
    An artificial "black hole" designed to capture wayward atoms has been created. It paves the way for an atom trap that could yield previously unknown states of matter. A team led by Lene Hau of Harvard University has mimicked the death spiral of matter falling into a cosmic black hole by applying a voltage across a carbon nanotube – a rolled-up sheet of carbon atoms. This created a powerful electric field that tugged at nearby rubidium atoms, which had been chilled to a fraction of a degree above absolute zero: a positive charge on the surface of the nanotubes attracts...
  • Atom Smasher Could Reveal "The Beginning" "Huge Step Toward Unraveling Genesis Chapter 1"

    03/31/2010 4:13:56 PM PDT · by allmendream · 38 replies · 914+ views
    CBS News ^ | 31 Mar 10 | AP
    Atom Smasher Could Reveal "The Beginning" Physicists Laud Large Hadron Collider's Success; "Huge Step Toward Unraveling Genesis Chapter 1" Title only, as per the rules. Atom Smasher Could Reveal "The Beginning" Physicists Laud Large Hadron Collider's Success; "Huge Step Toward Unraveling Genesis Chapter 1" http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/03/31/tech/main6349508.shtml
  • Large Hadron Atom Smasher Reaches Near Speed of Light

    03/31/2010 12:41:00 AM PDT · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 90 replies · 1,565+ views
    The Daily Galaxy ^ | 3/30/2010 | The Daily Galaxy
    Scientists celebrated at the world's biggest atom smasher at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) near Geneva on Tuesday as they started colliding particles at record energy levels mimicking conditions close to the Big Bang, opening a new era in the quest for the secrets of the universe. The European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) said it had unleashed the unprecedented bursts of energy on the third attempt, as beams of protons thrust around the 27-kilometre (16.8-mile) accelerator collided at close to the speed of light. "This is physics in the making, the beginning of a new era, we...
  • Latest Physics Theories May Help Challenge Evolution

    03/30/2010 8:53:37 AM PDT · by nysuperdoodle · 85 replies · 1,787+ views
    ECR/Technology Review ^ | 30 Mar 10 | EC
    The latest theories on the nature and origin of gravity are generating lots of interest from those looking to unify the various systems (Einsteinian, Newtonian, Quantum, String Theory) of looking at our universe, and bringing to the forefront the importance of the second law of thermodynamics as an organizing principle in our universe. The problem is that the second law of thermodynamics and evolution are pretty much incompatible, as EC explains...
  • LHC particle-punisher in record 7 TeV hypercollisions

    03/30/2010 6:48:52 AM PDT · by snarkpup · 20 replies · 855+ views
    The Register ^ | 30th March 2010 11:45 GMT | Lewis Page
    Earth apparently still here: Tinfoilers omelette-visaged It's official: as this is written, the most powerful particle collisions ever achieved by the human race are taking place inside the great subterranean detector caverns of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). An initial hiccup this morning saw an overly-jumpy automatic protection system quench a magnet and dump one of the beams, but boffins at the colossal 27-km machine's controls fought back to re-establish a ring of lightspeed 3.5 tera-electron-volt (TeV) protons in the affected magno-doughnut in time for lunch.
  • Particle Weapons 101

    03/29/2010 11:42:23 PM PDT · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 20 replies · 1,171+ views
    Physics Post ^ | 12/31/2001 | unkown
    WHAT KIND OF BEAM TO USE WANT? There are two types of particle beams; the one used depends on what the weapon is used for, either exoatmospheric or endoatmospheric. Exoatmospheric are in conditions where there is nothing, like space or a vacuum tube. Endoatmospheric are in conditions where an atmosphere exists, like on Earth or orbiting Earth. For exoatmospheric use the beam that exits the weapon must be neutral, have no charge, to prevent beam divergence. Beam divergence happens when a beam of charged particles increases in diameter as it travels through empty space. This is not good. If the...
  • Geneva atom smasher sets record for beam energy

    03/21/2010 2:58:35 AM PDT · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 11 replies · 410+ views
    AFP via Yahoo News ^ | 3/20/2010 | AFP via Yahoo News
    Operators of the world's largest atom smasher on Friday ramped up their massive machine to three times the energy ever previously achieved, in the run-up to experiments probing the secrets of the universe. The European Organization for Nuclear Research, or CERN, said beams of protons circulated at 3.5 trillion electron volts in both directions around the 27-kilometer (17-mile) tunnel housing the Large Hadron Collider under the Swiss-French border at Geneva. The next major development is expected in a few days when CERN starts colliding the beams in a new round of research to examine the tiniest particles and forces within...
  • Quivering Gizmo Ushers in Quantum Machines

    03/20/2010 8:29:47 PM PDT · by neverdem · 11 replies · 757+ views
    ScienceNOW ^ | March 17, 2010 | Adrian Cho
    Enlarge Image Springboard. This little vibrating widget has been eased into the simplest quantum state of motion. Credit: O'Connell et al., Nature, Advance Online Publication (2010) The weird rules of quantum mechanics state that a tiny object can absorb energy only in discrete amounts, or quanta, and can literally be in two places simultaneously. Those mind-bending tenets have been amply demonstrated in experiments with electrons, photons, atoms, and molecules. Ironically, though, physicists have never observed such bizarre quantum-mechanical effects in the motion of a human-made mechanical device. Now, Andrew Cleland, John Martinis, and colleagues at the University of California,...
  • Scientists supersize quantum mechanics

    03/18/2010 9:10:58 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 28 replies · 720+ views
    Nature ^ | 3/17/10 | Geoff Brumfiel
    Largest ever object put into quantum state.A team of scientists has succeeded in putting an object large enough to be visible to the naked eye into a mixed quantum state of moving and not moving. Andrew Cleland at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and his team cooled a tiny metal paddle until it reached its quantum mechanical 'ground state' — the lowest-energy state permitted by quantum mechanics. They then used the weird rules of quantum mechanics to simultaneously set the paddle moving while leaving it standing still. The experiment shows that the principles of quantum mechanics can apply...
  • New Answer to 80-Year-Old Question Makes Computer Modeling 100,000 Times Faster

    03/11/2010 9:46:04 PM PST · by grey_whiskers · 37 replies · 1,094+ views
    PopSci ^ | 2-26-2010 | Jeremy Hsu
    A new formula allows computers to simulate how new materials behave up to 100,000 times faster than previously possible, and could drastically speed up innovation relating to electronic devices and energy-efficient cars. Princeton engineers came up with the model based on an 80-year-old quantum physics puzzle. Llewellyn Hilleth Thomas and Nobel laureate Enrico Fermi first theorized in 1927 that they could calculate the energy of electrons in motion based on how electrons are distributed in a material. Knowing that kinetic energy of electrons in a material helps researchers understand the structure and properties of new materials, as well as how...
  • Ripping Apart Einstein

    03/07/2010 2:11:48 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 83 replies · 468+ views
    FQXI ^ | 3/7/10 | Bob Swarup
    Cutting the threads of the spacetime fabric and reinstating the aether could lead to a theory of quantum gravity.If there’s one thing Einstein taught us, it’s that time is relative. But physicist Petr Hořava is challenging this notion and tearing through the fabric of spacetime in his quest for a theory of quantum gravity. His work may also resurrect another entity that Einstein had seemingly buried—the aether. Physicists have spent decades searching for a way to reconcile the seemingly incongruous twin foundations of modern physics: quantum theory, which deals with the infinitesimally small, and Einstein’s theory of gravity, general relativity,...
  • Hydrocarbon turns superconductor

    03/04/2010 6:44:19 PM PST · by neverdem · 15 replies · 659+ views
    Chemistry World ^ | 03 March 2010 | Jon Cartwright
    Researchers in Japan have created the first superconducting material based on a molecule of carbon and hydrogen atoms. Although the superconducting transition occurs at a chilly 18K, the simplicity of the molecule, which consists of just five benzene rings, suggests that it will open the door to other molecules that have higher transition temperatures.Superconductivity occurs when a material is cooled below a certain transition temperature (Tc) so that its electrical resistance disappears. The first superconductors were pure metals and had Tc  values close to absolute zero, but over the past 25 years scientists have begun to discover various 'high-Tc' materials, including...
  • Institute of Physics Issues Scathing Document on Implications of Climategate

    02/27/2010 3:51:27 PM PST · by Askwhy5times · 4 replies · 540+ views
    Bluegrass Pundit ^ | Saturday, February 27, 2010 | Bluegrass Pundit
    The British Parliament's Science and Technology committee has has welcomed comment as part of their investigation of the UEA CRU e-mails released in Climategate. The Institute of Physics is a scientific charity with over 36,000 members worldwide. The Institute of Physics has responded. Here are the first six points of their thirteen point document. Their conclusions are very damning to the integrity of the climate research community.
  • Entangle This: Physicist Says Energy Teleportation Possible

    02/25/2010 8:02:01 AM PST · by wbarmy · 23 replies · 941+ views
    A physicist at Tohoku University in Japan has outlined, for the first time ever, how we might use quantum principles to teleport energy.
  • The Hidden Flaw in Greenhouse Theory

    02/24/2010 11:52:23 PM PST · by neverdem · 50 replies · 1,457+ views
    American Thinker ^ | February 25, 2010 | Alan Siddons
    Insulated by an outer crust, the surface of the earth acquires nearly all of its heat from the sun. The only exit for this heat to take is through a door marked "Radiation." And therein lies a tale... Recently, I chanced upon an Atmospheric Science Educator Guide [PDF] published by NASA. Aimed at students in grades 5 through 8, it helps teachers explain how so-called "greenhouse gases" warm our planet Earth. These guides are interesting on a number of levels, so I recommend you look them over. But what caught my eye was this: Question: Do all of the gases in our atmosphere absorb heat? Answer: (Allow students to discuss...
  • Stray Hydrogen Atoms Become Deadly for Starships Traveling at Light Speed

    02/18/2010 1:34:50 AM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 60 replies · 1,363+ views
    Popular Science ^ | 2/17/2010 | Jeremy Hsu
    Science fiction writers may have to rethink how their starship crews survive travel near or beyond the speed of light. Even the occasional hydrogen atom floating in the interstellar void would become a lethal radiation beam that would kill human crews in mere seconds and destroy a spacecraft's electronics, New Scientist reports. Just a few stray wisps of hydrogen gas -- fewer than two hydrogen atoms per cubic centimeter on average -- would translate into 7 teraelectron volts for a starship crew traveling at 99.999998 percent of the speed of light. That's as much fun for humans as standing in...
  • Scientists Re-Create High Temperatures From Big Bang

    02/16/2010 1:36:08 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 79 replies · 1,189+ views
    ABC News ^ | 2/16/2010 | Dan Vergano
    Atom smashers at a U.S. national lab have produced temperatures not seen since the Big Bang — 7.2 trillion degrees, or 250,000 times hotter than the sun's interior — in work re-creating the universe's first microseconds. The results come from the 2.4-mile-wide Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider at the Department of Energy's Brookhaven (N.Y.) National Laboratory. Since 2000, scientists there have hurtled gold atoms together at nearly the speed of light. These smash-ups heat bubbles smaller than the center of an atom to about 40 times hotter than the center of an imploding supernova. Scientists say the results have given them...
  • On CLOUD nine [Important Experiment on Cloud Cover Effects of Sun's Cosmic Rays]

    02/07/2010 1:49:58 PM PST · by Enchante · 20 replies · 554+ views
    CERN: European Center for Nuclear Research ^ | Mon 08 Jun 2009 | CERN Staff
    The CLOUD team will be able to recreate the conditions of any part of the atmosphere inside the new chamber, from the polar stratosphere to the low level tropics. The link between cosmic rays and climate change is one that has been hotly debated over the past decade, grabbing the attention of the media. The idea revolves around the possibility that particles entering the atmosphere from space can affect cloud formation, which in turn affects the climate. But despite the controversy surrounding the theory, the central question – ‘do cosmic rays help create clouds?’ – has barely been tested in...
  • Obama vs. Einstein

    02/07/2010 8:51:21 AM PST · by AJKauf · 19 replies · 1,004+ views
    Pajamas Media ^ | Feb. 7 | frank J. Tipler
    According to the Washington Post, David Axelrod, Barack Obama’s senior advisor, said that the president worked with “[Harvard professor] Laurence Tribe on a paper on the legal implications of Einstein’s theory of relativity.” I’ve read that paper, “The Curvature of Constitutional Space.” It’s complete nonsense. It shows no understanding of Einstein’s theory of relativity, or of the relationship between relativity theory and Newton’s theory. I — to use Obama’s favorite word — do understand relativity theory. I was trained in relativity theory by the best. I was the post-doc of the late Princeton professor John A. Wheeler, who was himself...
  • Record-breaking collisions (Large Hadron Collider producing more mesons than expected)

    02/05/2010 4:35:52 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 33 replies · 1,040+ views
    MIT News ^ | 2/5/10 | Anne Trafton
    Initial results from high-energy proton collisions at the Large Hadron Collider offer first glimpse of physics at new energy frontier.In December, the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest particle accelerator, shattered the world record for highest energy particle collisions. This week, team led by researchers from MIT, CERN and the KFKI Research Institute for Particle and Nuclear Physics in Budapest, Hungary, completed work on the first scientific paper analyzing the results of those collisions. Its findings show that the collisions produced an unexpectedly high number of particles called mesons — a factor that will have to be taken into account...
  • Nuclear fission algorithm is created

    01/25/2010 7:42:42 PM PST · by ErnstStavroBlofeld · 15 replies · 681+ views
    Space War ^ | 1/25/2010 | UPI via Space War
    U.S. Department of Energy scientists say they've created a computer algorithm that allows a substantially enhanced view of nuclear fission. The Argonne National Laboratory scientists said the algorithm, known as the neutron transport code, enables researchers for the first time to obtain a highly detailed description of a nuclear reactor core. "The code could prove crucial in the development of nuclear reactors that are safe, affordable and environmentally friendly," laboratory officials said in a statement. To model the complex geometry of a reactor core currently requires billions of spatial elements, hundreds of angles and thousands of energy groups -- all...