Posts

April 30, 2015

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2:00 PM | How to measure tiny temperature differences using a Josephson junction
At low temperatures, the resistivity of a metal (the inverse of its conductivity) is nearly constant. As the temperature of a material is lowered […] Read more The post How to measure tiny temperature differences using a Josephson junction appeared first on Mapping Ignorance. Related posts:Unveiling the origin of the record superconductivity Plasmonic response depends on the shape of the gap How to induce a giant spin-orbit effect in graphene
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1:54 PM | RIP Goldie, 2002(?)-2015
This morning, at about 8:45, our beloved cat Goldie passed away.  Only the day before, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor that was affecting her movement and cognitive functions, and she had deteriorated rapidly over the course of the … Continue reading →
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1:33 PM | Why, and how, computational research matters is changing materials science
To stay competitive, businesses and governments are constantly looking for materials that will open the door to new technologies or sources of energy. Materials that will make their products faster, lighter, stronger or more efficient. Whoever develops those materials first will have a significant edge over the competition.
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1:28 PM | Supermassive Black Holes Running at Full Tilt
Bin Luo We are very pleased to welcome Bin Luo as a guest blogger today. He led the study on supermassive black holes that is the subject of our latest press release. Bin obtained a PhD degree in Astronomy and Astrophysics from the Pennsylvania State University in 2010, working on the Chandra Deep Field surveys. He then worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, and later back at the Pennsylvania State University. He will start a faculty position in […]
Editor's Pick
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1:27 PM | NASA's Chandra Suggests Black Holes Gorging at Excessive Rates
Astronomers have studied 51 quasars with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and found they may represent an unusual population of black holes that consume excessive amounts of matter, as described in our latest press release. Quasars are objects that have supermassive black holes that also shine very brightly in different types of light. By examining the X-ray properties with Chandra, and combining them with data from ultraviolet and visible light observations, scientists are trying to determine […]
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1:22 PM | No Hogwarts invitation required: Invisibility cloaks move into the real-life classroom
A new solid-state device can demonstrate the physical principles of invisibility cloaks without special equipment or magic spells.
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1:00 PM | Mercury Spacecraft Crashes with the Energy of Two Thousand Falling Trees
For the past eight years NASA's MESSENGER (MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging) spacecraft has been sending back gigabytes of images and data from the Sun's closest companion, Mercury. Today this will come to a fiery end when the fuel-depleted spacecraft crashes into the surface of Mercury in a planned end to the highly-successful mission.Craters on Mercury colored by the type of material. Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie […]
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12:22 PM | How to Build a Cloud Chamber to Detect Cosmic Rays
Sorry, I have no idea how to build a cloud chamber, I’m just a theorist. But Samantha here can help you out (and be much more charming than I would be in the process).Related Posts:Bubble chamber artGravitational Waves in Five YearsAuger North
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12:15 PM | Photonic thermometers: Out of the lab, into a bucket of water
A new class of tiny chip-based thermometers has the potential to revolutionize the way temperature is gauged.
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12:09 PM | Detecting effects of 3D shapes in nanoscale chip features
Researchers have determined that, at the ultra-small scale of the latest chip features, SEM measurements are strongly affected by variations in the gate's three-dimensional shape that can occur in the course of fabrication, including the line width and center position, the angle formed by a raised feature?s sidewalls, the curvature radius of the top edge area, and the effect of adjacent structures.
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11:00 AM | Bare Bones...
The Belle II detector and the upgraded accelerator SuperKEKB make up Japan’s new B factory for studying flavor physics and CP violation. Following some delays, the accelerator is set to start up next January, and full data-taking will begin in 2018.KEKCitation: Phys. Today 68, 4, 18 (2015); http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/PT.3.2743Topics: Fukushima Daiichi, Economy, Nuclear Physics, Nuclear Power, Research, Quantum MechanicsUnfortunately, scientific advances costs money, along with the […]
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8:37 AM | Desirable defects in liquid crystals
Introducing flaws into liquid crystals by inserting microspheres and then controlling them with electrical fields: that, in a nutshell, is the rationale behind a method that could be exploited for a new generation of advanced materials, potentially useful for optical technologies, electronic displays and e-readers.
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6:38 AM | Harnessing sunlight more effectively with nanoparticles
Computer simulations reveal why semiconductor microspheres containing metal nanoparticles are so effective at harnessing sunlight to accelerate chemical reactions.
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6:34 AM | Making magnetic hot spots with pairs of silicon nanocylinders
Shining visible light on two tiny silicon cylinders, or a 'nanodimer', placed just 30 nanometers apart, produces resonant hot spots for both the electric and magnetic fields.
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4:00 AM | Il ‘complotto’ della materia scura
Un gruppo internazionale di astronomi guidati da Michele Cappellari dell’Università di Oxford ha utilizzato i dati del telescopio di 10m del Keck Observatory situato nelle Hawaii per analizzare i moti delle stelle nelle regioni più esterne delle galassie ellittiche, nella prima di una serie di survey allo scopo di osservare un numero sempre più grande di questa … Continue reading Il ‘complotto’ della materia scura →
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4:00 AM | The Devil's in the Details
Researchers from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory led implementation of a new system to represent turbulence in a multi-scale atmosphere model that improves the simulated distribution of low clouds.
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4:00 AM | DECam’s Far-Out Forays
The Dark Energy Survey, which studies the accelerating expansion of our universe, uses one of the most sensitive observing tools that astronomers have: the Dark Energy Camera. Built at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory and situated on the Victor Blanco 4-meter telescope in Chile, the camera spends 30 percent of each year collecting light from clusters of galaxies for DES.
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4:00 AM | Finals of the 25th National Science Bowl Begin Today
This weekend, 68 high school teams and 48 middle school teams will be competing in Finals of the 2015 National Science Bowl. Keep checking back for updates and results of your favorite teams.

April 29, 2015

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9:38 PM | What Does “Scientific Consensus” Mean?
Should we get vaccinated? Fluoridate our water? Fight global warming? Believe in evolution? The Big Bang? Dark matter? Find out.Continue reading on Medium »
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7:33 PM | The Best Short Quantum Films You'll See Today
This award winning film lets you experience what happens when solar wind slams into Earth's magnetosphere. The results are downright spooky.This is the short film 20hz, based on data from the CARISMA radio telescope array during a geo-magnetic storm in Earth's upper atmosphere. The researchers converted the radio signals picked up by the telescope array into audible sounds, which the filmmakers then turned into a visual representation.It garnered first place in the 2014 Quantum Shorts film […]
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6:17 PM | Chemists cook up three atom-thick electronic sheets
Making thin films out of semiconducting materials is analogous to how ice grows on a windowpane: When the conditions are just right, the semiconductor grows in flat crystals that slowly fuse together, eventually forming a continuous film.
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5:59 PM | Mysterious news stories about supervoids
Early last week a news story broke about a supervoid. The supervoid was claimed to be a number of things, from an explanation for "the cold spot", to the biggest "structure" yet found in the universe, to just "mysterious".Whether it is a structure or not entirely depends on how you define structure, so I won't discuss whether it is or isn't a structure. However, if you do allow it to be a structure, it isn't the biggest structure yet found. It's hard to do a like for like comparison with other […]
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4:14 PM | Miniature Opto-Mechanical Actuators - PI Releases new Brochure
Precision motion and positioning systems leader PI (Physik Instrumente) LP has released its newest catalog on high-precision miniaturized opto-mechanical piezo-motor actuators, dubbed the PiezoMike family. The PI Group offers a wide range of standard and vacuum compatible positioning products, in addition to custom engineered solutions.
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4:04 PM | Research seeks alternatives for reducing bacteria in fresh produce using nanoengineering
Researchers have been exploring natural, safe and alternative antimicrobials to reduce bacterial contamination. Plant essential oils such as those from thyme, oregano and clove are known to have a strong antimicrobial effect, but currently their use in food protection is limited due to their low solubility in water. The team explored ways to formulate oil nanoemulsions to increase the solubility and stability of essential oils, and consequently, enhance their antimicrobial activity.
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4:01 PM | Martian canyons may have been carved by windAncient canyons scar...
Martian canyons may have been carved by windAncient canyons scar the surface of Mars, a relic from a time billions of years ago when rivers flowed on its surface. But water may not be the only factor that shaped these canyons—the wind whipping through them could be just as important, according to a new study of river canyons on Earth. Scientists studying chasms in the Andes mountains in northeast Chile have found that wind carves some canyons 10 times faster than water. The discovery may […]
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3:25 PM | Multifractals suggest the existence of an unknown physical mechanism on the Sun
The famous sunspots on the surface of the Earth’s star result from the dynamics of strong magnetic fields, and their numbers are an important indicator of the state of activity […]
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3:24 PM | Gene therapy clips out heart failure causing gene mutations
Gene therapy can clip out genetic material linked to heart failure and replace it with the normal gene in human cardiac cells, according to a study led by researchers from […]
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3:23 PM | The trillion-frame-per-second camera
When a crystal lattice is excited by a laser pulse, waves of jostling atoms can travel through the material at close to one sixth the speed of light, or approximately […]
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3:23 PM | A phone with the ultimate macro feature
If you thought scanning one of those strange, square QR codes with your phone was somewhat advanced, hold on to your seat. Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles […]
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3:22 PM | Brain-injured patients need therapies based on cognitive neuroscience
Patients with traumatic brain injuries are not benefiting from recent advances in cognitive neuroscience research – and they should be, scientists report in a special issue of Current Opinion in […]
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