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Keyword: stringtheory

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  • Physicists Discover a Whopping 13 New Solutions to Three-Body Problem

    03/09/2013 9:25:20 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 35 replies
    Science Now ^ | 3/8/13 | Jon Cartwright
    It's the sort of abstract puzzle that keeps a scientist awake at night: Can you predict how three objects will orbit each other in a repeating pattern? In the 300 years since this "three-body problem" was first recognized, just three families of solutions have been found. Now, two physicists have discovered 13 new families. It's quite a feat in mathematical physics, and it could conceivably help astrophysicists understand new planetary systems. The trove of new solutions has researchers jazzed. "I love these things," says Robert Vanderbei a mathematician at Princeton University who was not involved in the work. He says...
  • Herschel gets to the bottom of black-hole jets

    03/15/2013 9:41:44 AM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 13 replies
    European Space Agency. ^ | 12 Mar 2013 | Stéphane Corbel & Göran Pilbratt
    Astronomers using ESA's Herschel space observatory have detected emission from the base of black-hole jets for the first time. While studying the black-hole binary system GX 339-4 in a multi-wavelength observation campaign, they noticed changes in the source's X-ray and radio emissions signalling the onset of powerful jets being released from the black hole's vicinity. This prompted the astronomers to observe the source at far-infrared wavelengths with Herschel. As the first observation of emission from jets in a black-hole binary system at these wavelengths, the data have allowed the astronomers to probe the jets down to their base, where the...
  • In praise of … Higgs boson

    03/15/2013 1:00:02 PM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 24 replies
    Guardian (UK) ^ | Thursday 14 March 2013 | Editorial
    The vanishingly small speck whose spin has been confirmed as being Higgs-like ought to be regarded with aweImage removed,...see article website Traces of proton collisions at Cern during the search for the Higgs boson. Photograph: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty ImagesIt is a subatomic point where hard science meets myth and mystery, so much about the Higgs boson gets mangled in the telling. It is not, as is sometimes claimed, the sole source of matter's heft – Einstein taught us that mass and energy are two sides of the same coin, so there is (ahem) no such massive hole for a tiny particle...
  • On Pi Day [March 14, 2013], finding strength in numbers

    03/14/2013 5:11:50 AM PDT · by Daffynition · 43 replies
    CNN ^ | March 14, 2013 | Elizabeth Landau,
    In Daniel Tammet's mind, three is a dotted green crescent moon shape, one is a sort of white sunburst and four is a blue boomerang. Every number has a distinct color and shape, making the number pi, which begins with 3.14, unfold like a beautiful poem. For math enthusiasts around the world, March 14 (3-14) is Pi Day, honoring the number pi, which is the ratio of circumference to diameter of a circle. On Thursday, Tammet is promoting France's first Pi Day celebration at the Palace of Discovery science museum in Paris. Tammet's relationship to this number is special: At...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Spin up of a Supermassive Black Hole

    03/12/2013 7:07:02 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 24 replies
    NASA ^ | March 12, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: How fast can a black hole spin? If any object made of regular matter spins too fast -- it breaks apart. But a black hole might not be able to break apart -- and its maximum spin rate is really unknown. Theorists usually model rapidly rotating black holes with the Kerr solution to Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, which predicts several amazing and unusual things. Perhaps its most easily testable prediction, though, is that matter entering a maximally rotating black hole should be last seen orbiting at near the speed of light, as seen from far away. This prediction...
  • The ALMA telescope has just made its first major discovery

    03/13/2013 3:31:48 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 16 replies
    IO9 ^ | Today 2:07pm | George Dvorsky
    Today is inauguration day for ALMA, the massive telescopic array that’s still under construction in Chile’s Atacama Desert. But just because it’s not finished doesn’t mean astronomers haven’t been using it. The $1.5 billion telescope has just peered into the deepest realms of the universe, revealing some of the most distant star-spawning galaxies ever discovered....
  • Chinese Physicists Measure Speed of “Spooky Action At a Distance”

    03/07/2013 11:41:49 PM PST · by Bobalu · 48 replies
    Physics arXiv Blog ^ | March 7, 2013 | Physics arXiv Blog
    Einstein railed against the possibility of spooky action at a distance because it violates relativity. Now Chinese physicists have clocked it traveling more than four orders of magnitude faster than light
  • Quantum theory is wrong.

    03/07/2013 5:44:05 AM PST · by ABrit · 62 replies
    A word in your ear ^ | March 7th 2013 | Mark
    Particles do not retain "information", don't have "knowledge". It is not that the act of observation that alters reality. In fact the physical nature of the "observation" small though it may be is sufficient to alter the metrics of sub atomic particles.
  • Magnifying the Universe: Move From Atoms to Galaxies in HD

    03/08/2013 11:24:27 AM PST · by Dysart · 22 replies
    Open Culture (via Number Sleuth) ^ | 3-8-13 | Number Sleuth
    Before you do anything else, click on the image above and then move little slider (along the bottom of the image) from left to right. Now watch the universe fly by, going from macro to micro. Pretty cool, no? Now read on: This dynamic infographic comes to us via Number Sleuth, who describes their wonderful creation as follows: This interactive infographic accurately illustrates the scale of over 100 items within the observable universe ranging from galaxies to insects, nebulae and stars to molecules and atoms. Numerous hot points along the zoom slider allow for direct access to planets, animals, the...
  • Ex nihilo: Dynamical Casimir effect in metamaterial converts vacuum fluctuations into real photons

    03/08/2013 2:41:26 PM PST · by Kevmo · 24 replies
    Phys.Org ^ | March 8 2013 | Stuart Mason Dambrot
    Ex nihilo: Dynamical Casimir effect in metamaterial converts vacuum fluctuations into real photons March 8, 2013 by Stuart Mason Dambrot Copyright © PNAS, doi:10.1073/pnas.1212705110 ( —In the strange world of quantum mechanics, the vacuum state (sometimes referred to as the quantum vacuum, simply as the vacuum) is a quantum system's lowest possible energy state. While not containing physical particles, neither is it an empty void: Rather, the quantum vacuum contains fluctuating electromagnetic waves and so-called virtual particles, the latter being known to transition into and out of existence. In addition, the vacuum state has zero-point energy – the lowest quantized...
  • Century-old problem: ... professor finds out what causes low-frequency electronic 1/f noise

    03/07/2013 8:42:43 AM PST · by Red Badger · 37 replies
    Phys.Org ^ | 03-07-2013 | Provided by University of California - Riverside
    FULL TITLE: Solving nearly century-old problem: Using graphene, professor finds out what causes low-frequency electronic 1/f noise =========================================================== A University of California, Riverside Bourns College of Engineering professor and a team of researchers published a paper today that show how they solved an almost century-old problem that could further help downscale the size of electronic devices. The work, led by Alexander A. Balandin, a professor of electrical engineering at UC Riverside, focused on the low-frequency electronic 1/f noise, also known as pink noise and flicker noise. It is a signal or process with a power spectral density inversely proportional to...
  • NASA Discovers New Radiation Belt Around Earth

    03/02/2013 11:49:50 AM PST · by Olog-hai · 21 replies ^ | 28 February 2013 | 02:01 PM ET | Charles Q. Choi
    A ring of radiation previously unknown to science fleetingly surrounded Earth last year before being virtually annihilated by a powerful interplanetary shock wave, scientists say. NASA’s twin Van Allen space probes, which are studying the Earth’s radiation belts, made the cosmic find. The surprising discovery—a new, albeit temporary, radiation belt around Earth—reveals how much remains unknown about outer space, even those regions closest to the planet, researchers added. …
  • Earth's mantle helps hunt for fifth force of nature

    02/24/2013 4:51:43 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 10 replies ^ | 19:00 21 February 2013 by | Jacob Aron
    Try using the entire Earth to hunt for a new fundamental force of nature. So say Larry Hunter of Amherst College in Massachusetts, and colleagues. They have created a map of the spins of electrons deep within the Earth's mantle, which could be used to reveal the as-yet-unseen force as well as the strange particles – known as "unparticles" – that might carry it. We currently know of four fundamental forces: gravity, electromagnetism and the strong and weak nuclear forces. The hypothetical fifth force can be thought of as a version of magnetism that does not weaken as quickly with...
  • Source of High-Energy Cosmic Rays Nailed at Last

    02/14/2013 5:06:17 PM PST · by neverdem · 10 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 14 February 2013 | Daniel Clery
    Enlarge Image Ray maker. The "Jellyfish nebula" (IC 443) and another supernova remnant gave researchers firm evidence that cosmic rays come from exploding stars. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA For the past century, physicists have puzzled over cosmic rays, particles (mostly protons) that hurtle through space at high speed and seem to come from all directions equally. What's the source of these galactic projectiles? And how do they come to be traveling so fast? Today, an international team announced a major step toward answering those questions: conclusive evidence that at least some of the cosmic rays come from supernova remnants—expanding shells of...
  • Developer seeks to preserve Westinghouse’s first-generation atom smasher

    02/07/2013 6:01:44 PM PST · by Ditto · 6 replies
    Pittsburgh Tribune Review ^ | February 6, 2013 | Jason Cato
    Smack in the middle of where a D.C. developer hopes to build apartments on the Forest Hills-Chalfant border stands a small brick building adorned with a towering steel orb. The four-story weathered object, which resembles a giant light bulb, is the genesis of the Westinghouse Electric Corp.'s foray into nuclear power — a 1937 van de Graaff particle accelerator, the world's first industrial atom smasher. “Westinghouse was really in the vanguard of nuclear power,” said Cynthia Kelly, president of the Washington-based Atomic Heritage Foundation. “It's great that they kept (the accelerator.) It's a great piece of history.” Gary Silversmith thinks...
  • Magnetic Sun Produces Hot Hot Heat

    02/02/2013 10:17:37 PM PST · by neverdem · 24 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 23 January 2013 | Sid Perkins
    Enlarge Image A picture of heat. A high-resolution image of the solar atmosphere at extreme ultraviolet wavelengths (right) reveals details of magnetic processes (middle and lower left; bright features denote intense energy release) likely providing much of the energy that heats the corona to temperatures ranging from 2 million°C to 4 million°C. The upper-left image denotes a region seen in close-up at right. Credit: Amy Winebarger/MSFC/NASA If you thought the exterior of the sun was hot, check out its corona. Although our star's visible surface is less than 6000°C, its atmosphere blazes at up to 4 million°C. Now, thanks...
  • "Simulated Pickett N4-ES Slide Rule". (For all you egg heads.)

    01/26/2013 9:50:45 AM PST · by Islander7 · 58 replies
    AntiQuark ^ | Feb 6, 2005 | Derek
    Following up on my original post, I've scanned and virtualized my Pickett N4-ES Vector Type LOG LOG DUAL BASE SPEED RULE. That's the most complicated rule that Picket produced. It has 34 scales, which is good, because in the world of slide rule collecting, bigger is better. ().
  • Dwarf planet Eris may reveal quantum gravity

    01/25/2013 12:55:54 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 48 replies ^ | 24 January 2013 | by Ker Than
    Many galaxies appear to have stronger gravity - and thus more mass - than can be explained by their visible matter alone. Overly massive galaxies are most often attributed to dark matter, an invisible substance that interacts with matter through gravity. To date, though, no one has directly detected dark matter particles. But a well-established notion in physics could hold another explanation for their size. This says that empty space is really a frothy, turbulent sea full of virtual particles - matter and antimatter that spring in and out of existence so fast that we can't see them. Though they...
  • Silenced watchdog highlights power behind rampant science fraud

    01/17/2013 5:39:55 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 15 replies
    Forbes ^ | January 9, 2013 | Bill Frezza
    Those of us concerned about the decaying credibility of Big Science were dismayed to learn that the whistleblower site Science Fraud has been shut down due to a barrage of legal threats against its operator. With billions of dollars in federal science funding hinging on the integrity of academic researchers, and billions more in health care dollars riding on the truthfulness of pharmaceutical research claims, the industry needs more websites like this, not fewer. Regular readers of Retraction Watch, a watchdog site run by two medical reporters, got the news along with a story about the blog’s anonymous editor, who...
  • New approach using nanoparticle alloys allows heat to be focused or reflected

    01/11/2013 10:55:49 AM PST · by Red Badger · 12 replies ^ | Jan 11,2013 | by David Chandler
    FULL TITLE: New approach using nanoparticle alloys allows heat to be focused or reflected just like electromagnetic waves An MIT researcher has developed a technique that provides a new way of manipulating heat, allowing it to be controlled much as light waves can be manipulated by lenses and mirrors. The approach relies on engineered materials consisting of nanostructured semiconductor alloy crystals. Heat is a vibration of matter—technically, a vibration of the atomic lattice of a material—just as sound is. Such vibrations can also be thought of as a stream of phonons—a kind of "virtual particle" that is analogous to the...