Thursday, April 20, 2017

Seeing Quadruple, Seeing the Universe More Clearly

An exploding star has astronomers seeing quadruple—and they couldn’t be happier. Today in the AAAS journal Science, an international team of researchers led by Ariel Goobar at Stockholm University presents unique images of a special type of stellar explosion, called a Type 1a supernova, that will offer important new insights into gravity, dark matter, and the acceleration of the universe.


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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

People Power: Getting a Feel for Joules & Watts

This week, we had a reader write in:

Why has no one developed a battery that can be attached to a recumbent bike to gather energy when someone is pedaling? Thousands of hours of manual work is being wasted (not counting the health benefits) 

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

TNT-Detecting Bacteria Could Illuminate Landmines

A hidden and indiscriminate threat, landmines injure and kill soldiers, civilians, and even inhabitants of now-peaceful regions every day. It’s impossible to know how many landmines are buried worldwide, but most estimates place the number somewhere between 100 million and 200 million devices. Once planted, landmines remain a threat until they are detected and detonated, a process that can take decades or longer if it is not a high priority in the region. Even when it is a priority, detecting these mines is slow and risky work.

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Monday, April 17, 2017

Swirling a Fluid from Within

From churning rapids to Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night, there is something about swirling motions that draws people in. The same can’t be said for the large, imposing structures that make up industrial chemical reactors found in water treatment centers and manufacturing plants. However, in some ways the two are closely connected.

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Friday, April 14, 2017

PhysicsCentral Will be Marching for Science...Will You?

Recently, PhysicsCentral’s parent organization endorsed the upcoming global March for Science—which means that we can now officially say the same! The American Physical Society is an official partner of the march, so you’ll be able to join a coalition of physicists and physics fans alike gathered on the national mall in Washington, D.C. this April 22nd! If you're not in the DC area, you can likely find a satellite march happening in your city, or create your own through the same page!

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Thursday, April 13, 2017

New Signs of an Environment Favorable for Life on Saturn’s Enceladus

In the search for extraterrestrial life, one of the most promising candidates so far is the tiny moon Enceladus. Research appearing today in the AAAS journal Science includes exciting new evidence of this promise—the detection of molecular hydrogen.

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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Astrophysicists Envision a Universe Without Dark Energy

Dark energy, the hypothesized but unconfirmed entity thought to propel the expansion of the universe, has puzzled astrophysicists since the 1990s. Its subtle effects are even harder to detect directly than those of dark matter. Now some scientists are developing alternative ways to understand the universe's expansion and proposing to dispose of the concept of dark energy altogether.

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Monday, April 10, 2017

A Green Light for Predicting Failure

Failure may be an opportunity for growth, but I don’t want to be anywhere near the collapsing bridge or malfunctioning airplane that everyone else learns from. When it comes to structural failure, the best place to learn about it is in the lab and the best time to detect it is well before it happens.

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Monday, April 03, 2017

Bats Wiggle Their Way to Better Echolocation

While pursuing prey in complete darkness, horseshoe bats can zip through dense vegetation guided solely by sound. Their only protection from the raging headache—or worse—of a headlong collision is the sound waves entering their two pointy ears. New experimental research out of Virginia Tech shows that the horseshoe bat’s knack for rapidly navigating its environment is partly due to how it “wiggles” its nose and ears.

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Saturday, April 01, 2017

American Physical Society Launches "Physical Review Tweets"

Following the success of Physical Review Materials and Physical Review X, the American Physical Society is excited to announce the launch of Physical Review Tweets, the latest addition to the Physical Review family of journals and/or feeds.

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