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Posts

April 24, 2014

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3:30 AM | Condensed Matter Physics Pitches In To Help Quantum Gravity
Relativity says that spacetime is smooth, and only big things can warp it, in ways that are exactly known. Quantum theory says that the smallest parts of the universe are constantly fluctuating and dramatically uncertain. How can something be both smooth and fluctuating, both exact and uncertain? How, in other words, can we make a quantum theory of gravity? It's unknown. String theory and loop quantum gravity have tried, but a unified theory has remained out of reach.Enter – of all things […]
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1:45 AM | Striking Cosmic Gold (Synopsis)
“Don’t gain the world and lose your soul; wisdom is better than silver or gold.” -Bob Marley Going back to ancient times, it’s hard to think of a more commonly coveted element than gold. In fact, trying to transmute other elements into it was perhaps the holy grail of the pseudoscience of alchemy, the forerunner…

April 23, 2014

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7:30 PM | Carbon Dioxide Cannon (scientists make mistakes!) Three fails...
Carbon Dioxide Cannon (scientists make mistakes!) Three fails and then success with our carbon dioxide cannon. via Periodic Videos. Carbon Dioxide Cannon - Extra Shot 2000 frames per second recording via Nottingham Science.
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6:00 PM | Mantis Shrimp, is there anything you can’t teach us?
A big tenant for starting Loony Labs was an idea that nature provides us with answers to some of the biggest technical problems. So I am proud to announce some […]

Grunenfelder L.K., Suksangpanya N., Salinas C., Milliron G., Yaraghi N., Herrera S., Evans-Lutterodt K., Nutt S.R., Zavattieri P. & Kisailus D. & (2014). Bio-inspired impact-resistant composites, Acta Biomaterialia, DOI:

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4:30 PM | Has NASA Predicted The End of Civilization? A recent NASA-backed...
Has NASA Predicted The End of Civilization? A recent NASA-backed study predicted that civilization is on the verge of collapse! We hear doomsday theories like this all the time, so should we be taking this one seriously? Laci is joined by Dr. Ian O’Neill, Discovery News’ resident solar physicist and doomsday specialist, to discuss why this prediction any different than others. Follow Ian on Twitter: https://twitter.com/astroengine Read Ian’s stories on Discovery News: […]
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2:07 PM | Liquid Spacetime - The Fluid Flow Of General Relativity?
Quantum mechanics is able to effectively explain three of the four fundamental forces of the Universe - electromagnetism, weak interaction and strong interaction - but it does not explain gravity, which is currently only accounted for by general relativity, which is classical physics. Identifying a plausible model of quantum gravity - a description of gravity within a quantum physics framework - is one of the major challenges physics is facing today. Despite many, many, many hypothetical models […]
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7:51 AM | Infra-Rose-Colored Glasses
The World Looks Different Through an Infrared Camera [I]t turns out that all objects are light emitters. It just happens that the light emitted from most objects is not visible to the human eye.
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1:16 AM | Removal of crop residue for biofuels increases CO2 emissions
Back in 2007, Congress passed the US Energy Independence and Security Act, which was intended to be a mechanism towards removing our country’s dependence on petroleum and promote renewable energies.  The Senate opposed the original bill’s attempt to cut oil … Continue reading →

Liska, A., Yang, H., Milner, M., Goddard, S., Blanco-Canqui, H., Pelton, M., Fang, X., Zhu, H. & Suyker, A. (2014). Biofuels from crop residue can reduce soil carbon and increase CO2 emissions, Nature Climate Change, DOI:

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April 22, 2014

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10:34 PM | A Crack In The Cosmic Egg - What Does The Cosmic Inflation Discovery Really Mean?
Last month, scientists announced the first hard evidence for cosmic inflation, the process by which the infant universe swelled from microscopic to cosmic size in an instant. While this almost unimaginably fast expansion was theorized more than three decades ago, there had been no evidence. Then researchers from the BICEP2 collaboration announced the first direct evidence for cosmic inflation and the first images of gravitational waves, or ripples in space-time, described as the "first tremors […]
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6:27 PM | Plasmonic Metamaterials Could Improve Solar Cell Performance
New plasmonic metamaterials that operate at high temperatures could radically improve solar cell performance and bring advanced computer data storage technology that uses heat to record information on a magnetic disk. Read more »

Guler, U., Boltasseva, A. & Shalaev, V. (2014). Refractory Plasmonics, Science, 344 (6181) 263-264. DOI:

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4:21 PM | Immortal Unbounded Universe
Our universe is eternal, expanding indefinitely, and not threatened by any form of 'heath death'. All evidence points into this direction. In fact, at the end of the nineteenth century Ludwig Boltzmann had collected all the evidence to draw such conclusions. His consistent reasoning on how to render the reversible laws of physics compatible with the second law of thermodynamics brought him close, but he failed to make the final decisive steps. Ok, I realize that at Boltzmann's time our […]
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4:00 PM | Alzheimer’s? Forget about it!
Let’s face it, diseases that affect the brain are some of the hardest to deal with. Anyone who’s lost someone to alzheimer’s knows exactly what I am talking about. Looking […]

Acharya S., Safaie B.M., Wongkongkathep P., Ivanova M.I., Attar A., Klarner F.G., Schrader T., Loo J.A., Bitan G. & Lapidus L.J. & (2014). Molecular Basis for Preventing  α-synuclein Aggregation by a Molecular Tweezer, Journal of Biological Chemistry, 289 (15) 10727-10737. DOI:

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4:00 PM | Alzheimer’s? Forget about it!
Let’s face it, diseases that affect the brain are some of the hardest to deal with. Anyone who’s lost someone to alzheimer’s knows exactly what I am talking about. Looking […]

Acharya S., Safaie B.M., Wongkongkathep P., Ivanova M.I., Attar A., Klarner F.G., Schrader T., Loo J.A., Bitan G. & Lapidus L.J. & (2014). Molecular Basis for Preventing  α-synuclein Aggregation by a Molecular Tweezer, Journal of Biological Chemistry, 289 (15) 10727-10737. DOI:

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4:00 PM | Alzheimer’s? Forget about it!
Let’s face it, diseases that affect the brain are some of the hardest to deal with. Anyone who’s lost someone to alzheimer’s knows exactly what I am talking about. Looking […]

Acharya S., Safaie B.M., Wongkongkathep P., Ivanova M.I., Attar A., Klarner F.G., Schrader T., Loo J.A., Bitan G. & Lapidus L.J. & (2014). Molecular Basis for Preventing  α-synuclein Aggregation by a Molecular Tweezer, Journal of Biological Chemistry, 289 (15) 10727-10737. DOI:

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4:00 PM | Alzheimer’s? Forget about it!
Let’s face it, diseases that affect the brain are some of the hardest to deal with. Anyone who’s lost someone to alzheimer’s knows exactly what I am talking about. Looking […]

Acharya S., Safaie B.M., Wongkongkathep P., Ivanova M.I., Attar A., Klarner F.G., Schrader T., Loo J.A., Bitan G. & Lapidus L.J. & (2014). Molecular Basis for Preventing  α-synuclein Aggregation by a Molecular Tweezer, Journal of Biological Chemistry, 289 (15) 10727-10737. DOI:

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3:30 PM | Forget Icarus, Fly As Close To The Sun As You Want!
Then he caught sight of the feathers on the waves, and cursed his inventions. He laid the body to rest, in a tomb, and the island was named Icaria after his buried child. —Metamorphoses Book VIII In a mythology beset by monsters created by malice (and sometimes bestiality) shines one crafted out of hope and […]The post Forget Icarus, Fly As Close To The Sun As You Want! appeared first on But Not Simpler.
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2:30 PM | The fundamentals of space-time: Part 1 - Andrew Pontzen and Tom...
The fundamentals of space-time: Part 1 - Andrew Pontzen and Tom Whyntie Space is where things happen. Time is when things happen. And sometimes, in order to really look at the universe, you need to take those two concepts and mash them together. In this first lesson of a three-part series on space-time, hilarious hosts Andrew Pontzen and Tom Whyntie go through the basics of space and time individually, and use a flip book to illustrate how we can begin to look at them together. View full […]
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1:00 PM | Can You Open A Bottle Of Wine With A Shoe? Yes, But It...
Can You Open A Bottle Of Wine With A Shoe? Yes, But It Ain’t Pretty A YouTube video makes it look so easy: Nine swift strikes against a wall and voila! Your cabernet is ready for pouring. We weren’t as successful. But we did figure out the physics behind the trick. via NPR.
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8:00 AM | Are You a Good Witch or a Bad Witch?
Star dust casts doubt on recent big bang wave result [O]ther things apart from gravitational waves, such as dust, can emit polarised photons. To minimise the chances of this effect causing a false signal, the BICEP 2 team pointed their telescope at a patch of sky far away from the Milky Way’s dusty disc. Then [...]
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1:00 AM | Discovering the Atomic Structure of the World Around Us -...
Discovering the Atomic Structure of the World Around Us - Katharine Page The Santa Fe Science Café for Young Thinkers presents Katharine Page, materials physicist from Los Alamos National Laboratory, discussing “Discovering the Atomic Structure of the World Around Us” Date: February 26, 2014. The Café is sponsored by the Santa Fe Alliance for Science, the Santa Fe Public Schools, the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, the Fractal Foundation and the Santa Fe […]

April 21, 2014

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9:44 PM | Neutrons Used to Probe Dark Matter
From [1]I'm reading up on a recent expeirment that used a neutron/gravity spectrometer to look for evidence of dark matter and dark energy.  I haven't got to review enough material to say something truly pithy here yet, but I thought I'd point you towards the stuff that's available.  First, here's a discussion of the experiment[1] from Texas A&M's own Dr. Schleich.  He's talked about this kind of thing before, (using neutrons for experiments involving gravity).  In fact, […]
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8:58 PM | Peeps For My Peeps
We’ve just ended our long candy season (Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s, Easter). How can we use the discounted candy for the good of science?  by Kerstin Nordstrom I spent many meals at … Continue reading →
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8:07 PM | Why Fortran Lives
Julia is a nifty new language being developed at MIT I stole this plot from github, it shows Julia’s current performance on some standard benchmarks compared to a number of favourite tools like Python, Java and R. Normalized to optimized C code. And, there, in a single plot, is why real programmer still use Fortran…
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6:30 PM | Sick Science! №191 - Flying Ping Pong Ball via Steve Spangler...
Sick Science! №191 - Flying Ping Pong Ball via Steve Spangler Science.
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4:28 PM | True enough for year 8 | Jon Butterworth | Life & Physics
When is gold not gold? Or a waterfall a waterfall? Some holiday ramblingsI'm on the way back from an Easter break with friends in north Wales; hence the waterfall. Our friends, like us, have a child in the early years of secondary school and, most of us being scientists (including one secondary-school chemistry teacher), we spent some time discussing and comparing how they are being taught.Our friend's son has been told to learn that an atom is the smallest possible piece of anything, and is […]
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4:28 PM | True enough for year 8 | Jon Butterworth | Life & Physics
When is gold not gold? Or a waterfall a waterfall? Some holiday ramblingsI'm on the way back from an Easter break with friends in north Wales; hence the waterfall. Our friends, like us, have a child in the early years of secondary school and, most of us being scientists (including one secondary-school chemistry teacher), we spent some time discussing and comparing how they are being taught.Our friend's son has been told to learn that an atom is the smallest possible piece of anything, and is […]
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4:01 PM | Quantum Turbulence - A Mystery Of Physics Without A Public Relations Campaign
The confirmation of the Higgs boson and what it can tell us about the origins of mass is getting all of the attention but there are scientific mysteries about less-understood forces that may also be keys to figuring out natural laws. Among these is quantum turbulence, the chaotic motion - at very high rates - of fluids that exist at temperatures close to zero. Observers as far back as Leonardo da Vinci have studied turbulence, a complex state of fluid motion. He observed that water […]
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1:42 PM | Tantalum Isomer Blurs The Boundaries Of Existence
Identifying the full extent of the nuclear landscape, essentially how many isotopes exist, is vital for nuclear physics. There is a lot left to learn. Beyond the stable nuclei that we find on Earth, there are many unstable nuclei that are formed in stellar events such as supernovae, but which are short-lived. There is a limit to how many protons and neutrons a nucleus can hold – too many and the excess will literally ‘pop out’. These limits are known as the proton and neutron […]
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1:39 PM | A new key to unlocking the mysteries of physics? Quantum turbulence
The recent discovery of the Higgs boson has confirmed theories […]
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12:00 PM | Nothing Is The Color You Think It Is. Or Is It? Color is a very...
Nothing Is The Color You Think It Is. Or Is It? Color is a very interesting thing, just about everything has one. Though, what I am doing today is tackling the idea behind what color is and what is what color. It might be more surprising than you think. Try mixing your own colors with light:http://www.oberlin.edu/faculty/brichard/Apples/ColorMixingPage.html via Think Fact. Twitter: https://twitter.com/DaleWinslow
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