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Keyword: stringtheory

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  • The Oracle of Arithmetic

    07/04/2016 4:38:42 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 33 replies
    Quanta ^ | 28 Jun, 2016 | Erica Klarreich
    At 28, Peter Scholze is uncovering deep connections between number theory and geometry. In 2010, a startling rumor filtered through the number theory community and reached Jared Weinstein. Apparently, some graduate student at the University of Bonn in Germany had written a paper that redid “Harris-Taylor” — a 288-page book dedicated to a single impenetrable proof in number theory — in only 37 pages. The 22-year-old student, Peter Scholze, had found a way to sidestep one of the most complicated parts of the proof, which deals with a sweeping connection between number theory and geometry. “It was just so stunning...
  • Einstein Proved Right on Gravity—Again

    04/25/2013 1:10:04 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 43 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | 04/25/2013 | Gautam Naik
    Scientists have subjected Albert Einstein's famous theory of gravity to its toughest real-world test so far—and it has prevailed. Einstein's general theory of relativity states that objects with mass cause a curvature in space-time, which we perceive as gravity. Space-time, according to Einstein's theories of relativity, is a four-dimensional fabric woven together by space and time. For example, a bowling ball causes a dent in a mattress, and that dent changes the otherwise straight motion of a nearby marble on the same mattress. Similarly, the mass of the sun distorts the space-time around it. A body with less mass, like...
  • Uranium Seawater Extraction Makes Nuclear Power Completely Renewable

    07/01/2016 4:39:49 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 39 replies
    Forbes ^ | July 1, 2016 | James Conca
    America, Japan and China are racing to be the first nation to make nuclear energy completely renewable. The hurdle is making it economic to extract uranium from seawater, because the amount of uranium in seawater is truly inexhaustible. And it seems America is in the lead. New technological breakthroughs from DOE’s Pacific Northwest (PNNL) and Oak Ridge (ORNL) national laboratories have made removing uranium from seawater within economic reach and the only question is – when will the source of uranium for our nuclear power plants change from mined ore to seawater extraction? Nuclear fuel made with uranium extracted from...
  • Scientist eyes 39-day voyage to Mars

    02/26/2010 2:39:44 PM PST · by NormsRevenge · 40 replies · 989+ views
    AFP on Yahoo ^ | 2/26/10 | Jean-Louis Santini
    WASHINGTON (AFP) – A journey from Earth to Mars could eventually take just 39 days -- cutting current travel time nearly six times -- according to a rocket scientist who has the ear of the US space agency. Franklin Chang-Diaz, a former astronaut and a physicist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), says reaching the Red Planet could be dramatically quicker using his high-tech VASIMR rocket, .. The Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket -- to give its full name -- is quick becoming a centerpiece of NASA's future strategy as it looks to private firms to help meet the...
  • The 17 equations that changed the world

    06/29/2016 8:33:17 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 65 replies
    World Economic Forum ^ | 4 Apr, 2016 | Andy Kiersz
    In 2012, Mathematician Ian Stewart came out with an excellent and deeply researched book titled "In Pursuit of the Unknown: 17 Equations That Changed the World." His book takes a look at the most pivotal equations of all time, and puts them in a human, rather than technical context. "Equations definitely can be dull, and they can seem complicated, but that’s because they are often presented in a dull and complicated way," Stewart told Business Insider. "I have an advantage over school math teachers: I'm not trying to show you how to do the sums yourself." ... Stewart continued that...
  • Why ultra-powerful radio bursts are the most perplexing mystery in astronomy

    06/28/2016 6:06:48 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 25 replies
    Nature ^ | 28 Jun, 2016 | Elizabeth Gibney
    No astronomer had ever seen anything like it. No theorist had predicted it. Yet there it was — a 5-millisecond radio burst that had arrived on 24 August 2001 from an unknown source seemingly billions of light years away. “It was so bright, we couldn't just dismiss it,” says Duncan Lorimer, who co-discovered the signal1 in 2007 while working on archived data from the Parkes radio telescope in New South Wales, Australia. “But we didn't really know what to do with it.” Such fleeting radio bursts usually came from pulsars — furiously rotating neutron stars whose radiation sweeps by Earth...
  • Sleeping Black Hole Wakes To Devour Passing Star

    06/26/2016 6:48:55 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 30 replies
    It happened about 3.9 billion light years from Earth in the direction of the Draco constellation, and was spotted using high-energy X-ray data from NASA's public archives. The black hole, with a mass a few million times larger than the sun, gorged on the star at a rate 100 times greater than a theoretical maximum known as the Eddington limit. The majority of supermassive black holes are dormant, meaning they are not actively consuming matter. But occasionally a star drifts too close to a dormant black hole and a 'tidal disruption event' begins. Authors of the new research say their...
  • String Theory Co-Founder: Sub-Atomic Particles Are Evidence the Universe Was Created

    06/20/2016 6:11:57 AM PDT · by xzins · 170 replies
    CNS ^ | June 17, 2016 | Barbara Hollingsworth
    Dr. Michio Kaku, a theoretical physicist at the City College of New York (CUNY) and co-founder of String Field Theory, says theoretical particles known as “primitive semi-radius tachyons” are physical evidence that the universe was created by a higher intelligence. After analyzing the behavior of these sub-atomic particles - which can move faster than the speed of light and have the ability to “unstick” space and matter – using technology created in 2005, Kaku concluded that the universe is a “Matrix” governed by laws and principles that could only have been designed by an intelligent being. “I have concluded that...
  • How to catch a ripple in spacetime

    06/19/2016 12:26:13 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 16 replies
    Ideas.ted.com ^ | 17 Jun, 2016 | Janna Levin
    How do you build a real-world machine to test the most abstract of theories? Janna Levin talks with Rai Weiss, one of the original designers of LIGO, the four-kilometer-long instrument that has now twice detected the distant reverberations of two black holes crashing into one another. Janna Levin is a theoretical physicist — she works with pen and paper to turn the elegant rules of the universe into theory. Rainer Weiss, or Rai, as he’s known, is an experimental physicist — he thinks about how to find and measure something that may or may not exist outside of theory. Weiss...
  • New paper claims that the EM Drive doesn't defy Newton's 3rd law after all

    06/18/2016 6:21:05 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 39 replies
    Science Alert ^ | June 16, 2016 | Fiona MacDonald
    So... it could still get us to Mars in 70 days? Physicists have just published a new paper that suggests the controversial EM drive - or electromagnetic drive - could actually work, and doesn't defy Newton's third law after all. In case you've missed the hype, here's a quick catch-up: a lot of space lovers are freaking out about the EM drive because of claims it could get humans to Mars in just 10 weeks, but just as many are sick of hearing about it, because, on paper at least, it doesn't work within the laws of physics. Despite that...
  • Fusion megaproject confirms 5-year delay, trims costs

    06/18/2016 5:58:51 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 20 replies
    Science ^ | June 16, 2016 | Daniel Clery
    The ITER fusion reactor will fire up for the first time in December 2025, the €18-billion project’s governing council confirmed today. The date for “first plasma” is 5 years later than under the old schedule, and to get there the council is asking the project partners—China, the European Union, India, Japan, Russia, South Korea, and the United States—to cough up an extra €4 billion ($4.5 billion). “It is expected, if there are no objections, that we can approve [the schedule] by November and then we can move forward,” says ITER director general Bernard Bigot. ITER aims to show that it...
  • Did a supernova two million years ago brighten the night sky and give our ancestors cancer?

    06/17/2016 4:22:29 PM PDT · by rickmichaels · 39 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | June 17, 2016 | Cheyenne Macdonald
    Millions of years ago, a series of nearby supernovae sent radiation and debris raining down to Earth. The events left traces of radioactive iron-60 embedded in the sea floor and even on the Moon, and now, researchers are saying they may have had life-altering effects on the early inhabitants of our planet. At just hundreds of light-years away, two major stellar explosions may have spurred changes to the environment, and even increased the rates of cancer and mutation.
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- GW151226: A Second Confirmed Source of Gravitational Radiation

    06/15/2016 1:43:27 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    NASA ^ | Wednesday, June 15, 2016 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: A new sky is becoming visible. When you look up, you see the sky as it appears in light -- electromagnetic radiation. But just over the past year, humanity has begun to see our once-familiar sky as it appears in a different type of radiation -- gravitational radiation. Today, the LIGO collaboration is reporting the detection of GW151226, the second confirmed flash of gravitational radiation after GW150914, the historic first detection registered three months earlier. As its name implies, GW151226 was recorded in late December of 2015. It was detected simultaneously by both LIGO facilities in Washington and Louisiana,...
  • A Second Set Of Gravitational Waves Have Been Detected

    06/16/2016 12:13:38 PM PDT · by zeestephen · 35 replies
    Watts Up With That ^ | 15 June 2016 | Anthony Watts
    Today, the LIGO collaboration is reporting the detection of GW151226, the second confirmed flash of gravitational radiation after GW150914, the historic first detection registered three months earlier.
  • LIGO detects another black hole crash

    06/15/2016 12:43:57 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 15 replies
    Science Magazine ^ | 6/15/16 | Adrian Cho
    On 26 December 2015, LIGO detected gravitational waves from two black holes spiraling together.LIGO/T. Pyle LIGO detects another black hole crash By Adrian ChoJun. 15, 2016 , 1:15 PM The biggest discovery in science this year--the observation of ripples in space-time called gravitational waves--was no fluke. For a second time, physicists working with the two massive detectors in the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) have detected a pulse of such waves, the LIGO team reported on 15 June at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in San Diego, California. Once again the waves emanated from the merger of...
  • Is Particle Physics About to Crack Wide Open?

    This is by far the most exciting thing that has happened in particle physics over the last three decades. If this hint of new physics is confirmed—something that could happen within just a few weeks, or possibly even within days—it is difficult to state the importance of such a discovery. It would be bigger than the detection of the Higgs boson, which was just confirmation of what was already known.
  • Cats seem to grasp the laws of physics

    06/14/2016 2:05:53 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 56 replies
    phys.org ^ | 06/14/2016
    Previous work conducted by the Japanese team established that cats predict the presence of invisible objects based on what they hear. In the present study, the researchers wanted to find out if cats use a causal rule to infer if a container holds an object, based on whether it is shaken along with a sound or not. The team also wanted to establish if cats expect an object to fall out or not, once the container is turned over. Thirty domestic cats were videotaped while an experimenter shook a container. In some cases this action went along with a rattling...
  • Hello, Nihonium. Scientists Name 4 New Elements On The Periodic Table

    06/09/2016 9:29:00 PM PDT · by nickcarraway · 38 replies
    NPR ^ | June 9, 2016 | Richard Gonzales
    It's time to update your copy of the periodic table. Four new elements discovered in recent years have now been named, pending final approval by the international group of scientists in charge of the table. The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry has announced these proposed names: Nihonium and symbol Nh, for the element 113 Moscovium and symbol Mc, for the element 115 Tennessine and symbol Ts, for the element 117 Oganesson and symbol Og, for the element 118 The new superheavy, radioactive elements were actually added to the periodic table late last year and given these temporary and...
  • Here are the proposed names for the 4 newest elements on the periodic table

    06/09/2016 2:40:41 AM PDT · by AdmSmith · 65 replies
    Vox ^ | 8JUN2016 | Brian Resnick
    Nihonium, named after Japan (Nippon is a Japanese word for Japan), with an atomic number of 113. Its symbol is Nh. Moscovium (Mc), element 115, named after the Russian capital city. Tennessine (Ts), 117, named after — you guessed it — the state of Tennessee. ("Tennessine is in recognition of the contribution of the Tennessee region, including Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Vanderbilt University, and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, to superheavy element research," the IUPAC states.) And finally, 118 is oganesson (Og), which bears the name of Russian physicist Yuri Oganessian, who led several elemental discoveries. Nature reports this...
  • Supermassive black holes in 'red geyser' galaxies cause galactic warming

    05/30/2016 4:08:50 PM PDT · by JimSEA · 37 replies
    Science Daily ^ | 5/25/2016 | University of Kentucky
    An international team of scientists, including the University of Kentucky's Renbin Yan, have uncovered a new class of galaxies, called "red geysers," with supermassive black hole winds so hot and energetic that stars can't form. Over the last few billion years, a mysterious kind of "galactic warming" has caused many galaxies to change from a lively place where new stars formed every now and then to a quiet place devoid of fresh young stars. But the mechanism that produces this dramatic transformation and keeps galaxies quiet has been one of the biggest unsolved mysteries in galaxy evolution. "These galaxies have...
  • Doubling down on Schrödinger's cat

    05/29/2016 10:00:37 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 23 replies
    Phys.Org ^ | May 26, 2016 | Provided by: Yale University
    Yale physicists have given Schrödinger's cat a second box to play in. Credit: Michael S. Helfenbein/Yale University ====================================================================================================================== Yale physicists have given Schrödinger's famous cat a second box to play in, and the result may help further the quest for reliable quantum computing. Schrödinger's cat is a well-known paradox that applies the concept of superposition in quantum physics to objects encountered in everyday life. The idea is that a cat is placed in a sealed box with a radioactive source and a poison that will be triggered if an atom of the radioactive substance decays. Quantum physics suggests that the...
  • Schrödinger's cat lives and dies in two boxes at once

    05/27/2016 11:17:02 AM PDT · by C19fan · 39 replies
    Physics World ^ | May 27, 2016 | Staff
    Schrödinger's cat now has a second box to play in, thanks to an international team of physicists that has created a two-mode "Schrödinger's cat state" for the first time. The experiment brings together two purely quantum properties, in that the "cat" (i.e. the photons) is simultaneously "alive and dead" (in a superposition of states) while also in two locations at once (the two boxes are entangled with one another).
  • Graphene is key in taking manufacturing to next level

    05/23/2016 3:27:27 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 31 replies
    The Manchester Evening News ^ | May 12, 2016 | Ben Rooth
    Graphene is widely regarded to be the most important development in the world of advanced manufacturing to date. The world’s thinnest, strongest and most conductive material was isolated at the University of Manchester in 2004. The potential of graphene is vast and research is currently underway into everything from bendable electronics to portable, energy-efficient water filtration plants and corrosion-proof coatings, anti-cancer drugs and even energy sources sewn into people’s skin. Last autumn, the National Graphene Institute received a major boost when China’s largest mobile phone manufacturer Huawei signed a partnership with the university to develop graphene-based technologies. Huawei stated at...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Inside a Daya Bay Antineutrino Detector

    05/22/2016 9:30:47 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies
    NASA ^ | Monday, May 23, 2016 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Why is there more matter than antimatter in the Universe? To better understand this facet of basic physics, energy departments in China and the USA led in the creation of the Daya Bay Reactor Neutrino Experiment. Located under thick rock about 50 kilometers northeast of Hong Kong, China, eight Daya Bay detectors monitor antineutrinos emitted by six nearby nuclear reactors. Featured here, a camera looks along one of the Daya Bay detectors, imaging photon sensors that pick up faint light emitted by antineutrinos interacting with fluids in the detector. Early results indicate an unexpectedly high rate of one type...
  • New study supports natural causes, not alien activity, explain mystery star's behavior

    05/09/2016 8:56:03 PM PDT · by rdl6989 · 16 replies
    phys.org ^ | May 9, 2016 | David Salisbury
    Sorry, E.T. lovers, but the results of a new study make it far less likely that KIC 8462852, popularly known as Tabby's star, is the home of industrious aliens who are gradually enclosing it in a vast shell called a Dyson sphere. Public interest in the star, which sits about 1,480 light-years away in the constellation Cygnus, began last fall when Yale astronomer Tabetha ("Tabby") Boyajian and colleagues posted a paper on an astronomy preprint server reporting that "planet hunters" - a citizen science group formed to search data from the Kepler space telescope for evidence of exoplanets - had...
  • Dimming star remains mystery, but it's likely not caused by comets

    01/16/2016 5:52:31 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 15 replies
    cnn ^ | jareen imam
    Theories surrounding the star system KIC 8462852, also known as Tabby's Star, ranged from comets to an "alien megastructure" after the online astronomy crowdsourcing site Planet Hunter discovered an unusual light fluctuation in the star system a few years ago. A new analysis of KIC 8462852 shows that the star system, which lies about 1,500 light years away, has been gradually dimming for more than a century, and it's likely not caused by a cloud of orbiting comets. Bradley Schaefer, a physics and astronomy professor at Louisiana State University, examined data from a Harvard University archive of digitally scanned photographic...
  • 'Alien Megastructure' Mystery May Soon Be Solved

    10/28/2015 12:56:27 PM PDT · by ETL · 59 replies
    Space.com ^ | October 28, 2015 | Mike Wall - Space.com Senior Writer
    The mystery behind a strangely dimming star could soon be solved. Astronomers around the world are keeping a close eye on the star KIC 8462852, which has dimmed dramatically numerous times over the past few years, dropping in brightness by up to 22 percent. These big dips have spurred speculation that the star may be surrounded by some type of alien megastructure — a hypothesis that will be put to the test if and when KIC 8462852 dims again. "As long as one of those events occurs again, we should be able to catch it in the act, and then...
  • SETI Institute undertakes search for alien signal from Kepler Star KIC 8462852

    10/24/2015 5:31:16 AM PDT · by Momaw Nadon · 16 replies
    PHYS.ORG ^ | October 22, 2015 | Bob King
    "We either caught something shortly after an event like two planets crashing together or alien intelligence," said Dr. Gerald Harp, senior scientist at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California, referring to the baffling light variations seen in the Kepler star KIC 8462852. And he and a team from the Institute are working hard at this moment to determine which of the two it is. Beginning last Friday (Oct. 16), the Institute's Allen Telescope Array (ATA) was taken off its normal survey schedule and instead focused on KIC 8462852, one of the 150,000-plus stars studied by NASA's Kepler Mission to...
  • Did Astronomers Find Evidence of an Alien Civilization? Probably Not. But Still Cool.

    10/15/2015 8:55:50 PM PDT · by Brad from Tennessee · 32 replies
    Slate ^ | October 14, 2015 | By Phil Plait
    The paper doesn’t mention aliens, and it doesn’t even imply aliens. Not directly, at least. But the astronomers found a star so odd, with behavior so difficult to explain, that it’s clear something weird is happening there. And some of the astronomers who did the work are now looking into the idea that what they’ve found might (might!) be due to aliens. But don’t let this idea run away with you. The scientists involved are being very skeptical and approaching this the right way. The star is called KIC 8462852, and it’s one of more than a hundred thousand stars...
  • The strange star that has serious scientists talking about an alien megastructure

    10/15/2015 12:04:31 PM PDT · by grundle · 66 replies
    Washington Post ^ | October 15, 2015 | Sarah Kaplan
    “It was kind of unbelievable that it was real data,” said Yale University astronomer Tabetha Boyajian. “We were scratching our heads. For any idea that came up there was always something that would argue against it.” She was talking to the New Scientist about KIC 8462852, a distant star with a very unusual flickering habit. Something was making the star dim drastically every few years, and she wasn’t sure what. Boyajian wrote up a paper on possible explanations for the star’s bizarre behavior, and it was published recently in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. But she also...
  • 'Alien Megastructure' Star Only Gets More Mysterious

    05/22/2016 6:39:00 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 53 replies
    Popular Science ^ | May 10, 2016 | Sarah Fecht
    Every now and then, a distant star called KIC 8462852 dims by as much as 20 percent. That's huge. Even a passing planet as big as Jupiter would only block about 1 percent of the star's light. Ruling out a planet, scientists have no idea what could be eclipsing the star (which is informally known as 'Tabby's Star'). The leading hypothesis is a family of really big comets, but that doesn't quite fit. Astronomer Jason Wright pointed out that the light patterns are consistent with what we'd expect if aliens had built a Dyson swarm of solar collectors around the...
  • Peek Inside Tri Alpha Energy, a Company Pursuing the Ideal Power Source

    05/20/2016 3:58:31 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 12 replies
    MIT Technology Review ^ | May 20, 2016 | Richard Martin
    No energy technology is more tantalizing than fusion, but no energy technology has proved more disappointing. So how has a fusion company in Southern California raised nearly half a billion dollars from the likes of Goldman Sachs and Paul Allen? Does it actually see a way to build a reactor that could generate vast amounts of clean power, even while other fusion projects have perpetually remained 20 years away from reality? In search of the answers, I visited the headquarters of Tri Alpha Energy in the spring. The coastal fog was lifting from the rolling hills in Foothill Ranch as...
  • How Does Light Travel?

    05/19/2016 1:06:30 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 82 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | 19 May , 2016 by | Matt Williams
    Ever since Democritus... argued that all of existence was made up of tiny indivisible atoms, scientists have been speculating as to the true nature of light. Whereas scientists ventured back and forth between the notion that light was a particle or a wave until the modern, the 20th century led to breakthroughs that showed that it behaves as both. These included the discovery of the electron, the development of quantum theory, and Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. However, there remains many fascinating and unanswered questions when it comes to light, many of which arise from its dual nature. For instance, how...
  • Do We Need to Revise General Relativity?

    05/20/2016 11:56:18 AM PDT · by MtnClimber · 39 replies
    Real Clear Science ^ | Ross Pomeroy
    The idea that our Universe is filled with dark matter has been around for nearly a century. When astronomers noticed that orbital speeds towards the edges of spiral galaxies remain the same or even increase slightly, rather than decrease, they surmised that either there must be some huge unseen mass driving the rotation, or that the laws of gravity given by Einstein's General Relativity need to be changed. They elected the first option. Over that time, cosmologists have accumulated boatloads of evidence in favor of the notion that this invisible, "dark" matter -- which neither interacts with nor emits light...
  • New Support for Alternative Quantum View

    05/17/2016 11:13:33 AM PDT · by Reeses · 30 replies
    Quanta Magazine ^ | May 16, 2016 | Dan Falk
    An experiment claims to have invalidated a decades-old criticism against pilot-wave theory, an alternative formulation of quantum mechanics that avoids the most baffling features of the subatomic universe. Of the many counterintuitive features of quantum mechanics, perhaps the most challenging to our notions of common sense is that particles do not have locations until they are observed. This is exactly what the standard view of quantum mechanics, often called the Copenhagen interpretation, asks us to believe. Instead of the clear-cut positions and movements of Newtonian physics, we have a cloud of probabilities described by a mathematical structure known as a...
  • Three Problems With the Big Bang

    05/11/2016 7:53:28 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 54 replies
    Real Clear Science ^ | Ross Pomeroy
    Somewhere around 13.8 billion years ago, the Universe began with a bang. In less than a second, the four fundamental forces -- electromagnetism, gravitation, weak nuclear interaction, and strong nuclear interaction -- which initially were joined as a single even more fundamental force, separated. Suddenly, the Universe started to expand at an exponential rate. Cosmic inflation had begun. .... The Big Bang is the best theory we have to explain the birth and existence of the Universe. As astrophysicist Ethan Siegel wrote in his recent book Beyond the Galaxy: "To this very day, there is no other model that is...
  • Hawking at Harvard ... tackles the contradictory qualities of black holes

    05/10/2016 1:00:09 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 15 replies
    Harvard.edu ^ | 4/18/16 | Peter Reuell
    Hawking at Harvard At packed Sanders Theatre, theoretical physicist and cosmologist tackles the contradictory qualities of black holes April 18, 2016 | Editor's Pick Popular Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer"If determinism — the predictability of the universe — breaks down in black holes, it could break down in other situations. Even worse, if determinism breaks down, we can’t be sure of our past history either. The history books and our memories could just be illusions. It is the past that tells us who we are. Without it, we lose our identity," said Stephen Hawking. By Peter Reuell, Harvard Staff Writer Twitter...
  • Why is space three-dimensional?

    05/05/2016 6:53:04 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 132 replies
    Phys.org ^ | 3 May, 2016 | Lisa Zyga
    The question of why space is three-dimensional (3D) and not some other number of dimensions has puzzled philosophers and scientists since ancient Greece. Space-time overall is four-dimensional, or (3 + 1)-dimensional, where time is the fourth dimension. It's well-known that the time dimension is related to the second law of thermodynamics: time has one direction (forward) because entropy (a measure of disorder) never decreases in a closed system such as the universe. In a new paper published in EPL, researchers have proposed that the second law of thermodynamics may also explain why space is 3D. "A number of researchers in...
  • A Photon Source That Operates at Ambient Temperatures on a Chip

    05/04/2016 7:52:34 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 16 replies
    Quantum information science and technology has emerged as a new paradigm for dramatically faster computation and secure communication in the 21st century. At the heart of any quantum system is the most basic building block, the quantum bit or qbit, which carries the quantum information that can be transferred and processed (this is the quantum analogue of the bit used in current information systems). The most promising carrier qbit for ultimately fast, long distance quantum information transfer is the photon, the quantum unit of light. The challenge facing scientists is to produce artificial sources of photons for various quantum information...
  • Mathematicians And 'The Man Who Knew Infinity'

    04/30/2016 8:09:39 AM PDT · by MtnClimber · 74 replies
    Inside Science ^ | 29 Apr, 2016 | Ramin Skibba
    (Inside Science) – In 1914, an unknown Indian man boarded a ship and traveled across the world to Cambridge University in England, where he could finally follow his passion for mathematics. In the few short years between his arrival and untimely death, he filled notebooks with formulas and discovered theorems, some of which still influence the work of mathematicians and scientists today. The new biopic, "The Man Who Knew Infinity," which opens in U.S. theaters beginning Friday, April 29, chronicles the life of Srinivasa Ramanujan. A self-taught Indian mathematician from the city then called Madras (now Chennai), Ramanujan struggled to...
  • Report: A Weasel Shut Down the Large Hadron Collider

    04/29/2016 6:44:28 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 38 replies
    Gizmodo ^ | 04/29/2016 | Maddie Stone
    The Large Hadron Collider suffered a power outage last night, after a luckless weasel decided to chew on a 66-kilovolt power cable. It’s not the first time the LHC, a 17-mile superconductor that smashes atoms together at close to the speed of light, has run into trouble because of something small and cute. In 2009, the power went down after a bird dropped a baguette onto a critical electrical system. Although the incident was widely reported and confirmed at the time by sources at the LHC, CERN is apparently now telling folks it may be apocryphal. “This was a story...
  • Where Nature Hides the Darkest Mystery of All

    04/28/2016 4:16:35 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 20 replies
    Nautilus ^ | 28 Apr, 2016 | Matthew Francis
    There’s no boundary quite like a black hole boundary. No known object in existence has as clear a division between “inside” and “outside” as a black hole. We live and see the outside, and no probe will bring us information about the inside. We can send radio messages or robotic spacecraft, but once they cross over into a black hole’s interior, we’ll never get back those emissaries … or any information about what happened to them. The boundary of a black hole is its event horizon. It’s not a surface in the usual sense—there’s no physical barrier—but it’s very much...
  • Bizarre fourth state of water discovered

    04/28/2016 6:22:09 AM PDT · by Hostage · 56 replies
    gizmag ^ | April 26, 2016 | Michael Franco
    You already know that water can have three states of matter: solid, liquid and gas. But scientists at the Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL) have discovered that when it's put under extreme pressure in small spaces, the life-giving liquid can exhibit a strange fourth state known as tunneling. The water under question was found in super-small six-sided channels in the mineral beryl, which forms the basis for the gems aquamarine and emerald. The channels measure only about five atoms across and function basically as cages that can each trap one water molecule. What the researchers found was that in this...
  • What Is The Strongest Force In The Universe?

    04/27/2016 7:17:25 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 78 replies
    Forbes ^ | 26 Apr, 2016 | Ethan Siegel
    When it comes to the fundamental laws of nature, we can break everything down into four forces that are at the core of everything in the Universe: The strong nuclear force: the force responsible for holding atomic nuclei and individual protons and neutrons together. The electromagnetic force: the force that attracts and repels charged particles, binds atoms together into molecules and life, and causes electric current, among other things. The weak nuclear force: the force responsible for some types of radioactive decay and the transmutation of heavy, unstable fundamental particles into lighter ones. And gravity: the force that bind the...
  • Nearing affordable extraction of uranium from seawater which would unlock over 800 times current res

    04/25/2016 10:02:42 PM PDT · by Vince Ferrer · 36 replies
    Next Big Future ^ | April 25, 2016 | Brian Wang
    Nearing affordable extraction of uranium from seawater, which would unlock over 800 times current reserves and with breeder reactors provide resources for billion years of current world power The oceans hold more than four billion tons of uranium—enough to meet global energy needs for the next 10,000 years if only we could capture the element from seawater to fuel nuclear power plants. For half a century, researchers worldwide have tried to mine uranium from the oceans with limited success. In the 1990s, Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) scientists pioneered materials that hold uranium as it is stuck or adsorbed onto...
  • Neil deGrasse Tyson thinks there's a 'very high' chance the universe is just a simulation

    04/24/2016 7:20:50 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 90 replies
    Business Insider ^ | 04/22/2016 | Kevin Loria
    We trust the scientists around us to have the best grasp on how the world actually works. So at this year's 2016 Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate at the American Museum of Natural History, which addressed the question of whether the universe is a simulation, the answers from some panelists may be more comforting than the responses from others. Physicist Lisa Randall, for example, said that she thought the odds that the universe isn't "real" are so low as to be "effectively zero." A satisfying answer for those who don't want to sit there puzzling out what it would mean for...
  • CERN releases 300TB of Large Hadron Collider data into open access

    04/24/2016 11:40:59 AM PDT · by rktman · 32 replies
    techcrunch.com ^ | 4/23/2016 | Devin Coldewey
    Cancel your plans for this weekend! CERN just dropped 300 terabytes of hot collider data on the world and you know you want to take a look. Kati Lassila-Perini, a physicist who works on the Compact Muon Solenoid (!) detector, gave a refreshingly straightforward explanation for this huge release. “Once we’ve exhausted our exploration of the data, we see no reason not to make them available publicly,” she said in a news release accompanying the data. “The benefits are numerous, from inspiring high school students to the training of the particle physicists of tomorrow. And personally, as CMS’s data preservation...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Galaxy Einstein Ring

    04/21/2016 1:43:17 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 5 replies
    NASA ^ | Wednesday, April 20, 2016 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Can one galaxy hide behind another? Not in the case of SDP.81. Here the foreground galaxy, shown in blue in an image taken by the Hubble Space Telescope, acts like a huge gravitational lens, pulling light from a background galaxy, shown in red in an image taken in radio waves by the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA), around it, keeping it visible. The alignment is so precise that the distant galaxy is distorted into part of a ring around the foreground galaxy, a formation known as an Einstein ring. Detailed analysis of the gravitational lens distortions indicate that a...
  • Reconfigured Tesla coil aligns, electrifies materials from a distance

    04/14/2016 8:28:59 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 20 replies
    phys.org ^ | April 14, 2016 | Provided by: Rice University
    Nanotube wires self-assemble under the influence of a directed electric field from the Tesla coil. Credit: Jeff Fitlow ======================================================================================================== Scientists at Rice University have discovered that the strong force field emitted by a Tesla coil causes carbon nanotubes to self-assemble into long wires, a phenomenon they call "Teslaphoresis." The team led by Rice chemist Paul Cherukuri reported its results this week in ACS Nano. Cherukuri sees this research as setting a clear path toward scalable assembly of nanotubes from the bottom up. The system works by remotely oscillating positive and negative charges in each nanotube, causing them to chain together...
  • Square Root Day (4/4/16), the Final Four and Opening Day -- sums it up today

    04/04/2016 9:26:58 AM PDT · by Daffynition · 21 replies
    The Plain Dealer ^ | April 04, 2016 | Brian Albrecht
    CLEVELAND, Ohio – April 4, 2016 wins a triple crown in the department of cosmic coincidences. The day marks Major League Baseball's Opening Day, the NCAA basketball championship and Square Root Day. All provide potential fodder for math geeks who scrupulously compile baseball stats, slaved over Sweet 16 and Final 4 basketball playoff match-ups, and appreciate a date when both the month and date are the square root of the year's last two digits (4,4,16).