Category Archives: Science

New York City March for Science – April 22, 2017!

Photos from the

New York City

March for Science

April 22, 2017!

PPPL and Max Planck physicists reveal experimental verification of a key source of fast reconnection of magnetic fields

Physicist Will Fox with Magnetic Reconnection Experiment.

Physicist Will Fox with Magnetic Reconnection Experiment.

Magnetic reconnection, a universal process that triggers solar flares and northern lights and can disrupt cell phone service and fusion experiments, occurs much faster than theory says that it should. Now researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) and Germany’s Max Planck Institute of Plasma Physics have discovered a source of the speed-up in a common form of reconnection. Their findings could lead to more accurate predictions of damaging space weather and improved fusion experiments.

Click here or on the picture for the full story: PPPL and Max Planck physicists reveal experimental verification of a key source of fast reconnection of magnetic fields

Lecture: John Carlstrom – What Do We Know About The Big Bang?

John Carlstrom gives the plenary lecture at the New Horizons in Inflationary Cosmology Templeton Conference organized by the Stanford Institute for Theoretical Physics.

Our understanding of the origin, evolution and make-up of the Universe has undergone dramatic and surprising advances over the last decades. Much of the progress has been driven by measurements of the fossil light from the big bang, called the cosmic microwave background radiation, which provides us with a glimpse of the Universe as it was 14 billion years ago. This talk will discuss what we know about the Big Bang and how we learned it. We will also talk about the new questions we are asking about the origin of the Universe and the experiments being pursued to answer them, peering back to the beginning of time.

Click here for the: Stanford Institute for Theoretical Physics

US Supercomputer Needs More People Power

US supercomputer needs more people power

A large computing network that has helped design cancer drug candidates and search for extra-terrestrial life is struggling to maintain its volunteer network.

A citizen science initiative that encourages public donations of idle computer processing power to run complex calculations is struggling to increase participation.

Click here or the picture to see the full story: US supercomputer needs more people power

The Institute for Research on Innovation & Science (IRIS)

The Institute for Research on Innovation & Science (IRIS)

The Institute for Research on Innovation & Science (IRIS) is the major national source for data to support fundamental research on the results of public and private investments in discovery, innovation, and education. It provides credible data and rigorous findings about the productivity and public value of the research enterprise to inform effective policy-making, support outreach, aid in research management, and expand the state of knowledge.

Click here or on the picture for the Website: Institute for Research for Innovation & Science

Who feels the pain of science research budget cuts?

Who feels the pain of science research budget cuts?

Not much science will get done without the money to fund people and equipment. Michael Pereckas, CC BY

What are research dollars actually spent on? Rather than looking at artifacts like publications and patents, a new initiative directly tracks the people and businesses that receive research funding.
Click here or the picture for the full story: Who feels the pain of science research budget cuts?

See Photos From the Apollo Space Missions Through Astronauts’ Eyes

Apollo Mission Photos

Going to the Moon Through Astronaut’s Eyes

These never-before-seen images provide a new perspective on the iconic mission.
Click here or the picture to see the photos: See Photos From the Apollo Space Missions Through Astronauts’ Eyes

Quantum Questions Inspire New Math

Quantum Questions Inspire New MathIn order to fully understand the quantum world, we may have to develop a new realm of mathematics.
Mathematics might be more of an environmental science than we realize. Even though it is a search for eternal truths, many mathematical concepts trace their origins to everyday experience. Astrology and architecture inspired Egyptians and Babylonians to develop geometry. The study of mechanics during the scientific revolution of the 17th century brought us calculus.

Remarkably, ideas from quantum theory turn out to carry tremendous mathematical power as well, even though we have little daily experience dealing with elementary particles. The bizarre world of quantum theory — where things can seem to be in two places at the same time and are subject to the laws of probability — not only represents a more fundamental description of nature than what preceded it, it also provides a rich context for modern mathematics. Could the logical structure of quantum theory, once fully understood and absorbed, inspire a new realm of mathematics that might be called “quantum mathematics”?

Click here for the full article: Quantum Questions Inspire New Math

NASA Discusses Discovery of Earth-Size, Habitable-Zone Planets

Original air date: Feb. 22, 2017 10 a.m. PT (1 p.m. ET, 1800 UTC) NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope has revealed the first known system of seven Earth-size planets around a single star. Three of these planets are firmly located in the habitable zone, the area around the parent star where a rocky planet is most likely to have liquid water. The discovery sets a new record for greatest number of habitable-zone planets found around a single star outside our solar system. All of these seven planets could have liquid water — key to life as we know it — under the right atmospheric conditions, but the chances are highest with the three in the habitable zone. The briefing participants were: Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator of the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington Michael Gillon, astronomer at the University of Liege in Belgium Sean Carey, manager of NASA’s Spitzer Science Center at Caltech/IPAC, Pasadena, California Nikole Lewis, astronomer at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore Sara Seager, professor of planetary science and physics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge For more information on exoplanets, visit: http://exoplanets.nasa.gov

Why Doesn’t Antimatter Anti-Gravitate?

antimatter anti-gravity?

If there were some type of matter that had negative gravitational charge, it would be repelled by the matter and energy that we are aware of.

Every massive particle exerts a gravitational force. So what do antimatter particles do?

Why aren’t there any particles that fall upwards in the gravitational field of Earth? It would be so handy – If I had to move the couch, rather than waiting for the husband to flex his muscles, I’d tie an anti-gravitating weight to it and the couch would just float to the other side of the room.

Click here or on the picture for the full story: Why Doesn’t Antimatter Anti-Gravitate?

Series of New Posts: Lectures, talks, podcasts, etc…

I will be starting a regular series of posts of lectures, talks, podcasts, etc. If you have requests for topics, please feel free to comment on this post or send me a message via the contact links. The first of these posts is below:

On Oct. 7, 2015, Perimeter Institute Director Neil Turok opened the 2015/16 season of the PI Public Lecture Series with a talk about the remarkably simplicity that underlies nature. Turok discussed how this simplicity at the largest and tiniest scales of the universe is pointing toward new avenues of physics research and could lead to revolutionary advances in technology.

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2017 Career Handbook by Science (AAAS)

2017 Science Career Handbook (AAAS)
Science Careers has teamed up with some great organizations to bring you information about the latest career opportunities in many different fields. The profiles included in this booklet give you a sense of the types of organizations that are accepting resumes and the kinds of positions they offer. We’ve also included some articles with some general tips and advice on job searching.
Source: 2017 Career Handbook

Why a NASA spacecraft could bounce, crunch or sink on icy Europa

Why a NASA spacecraft could bounce, crunch or sink on icy Europa

Sometime in the early 2030s, NASA hopes to attempt a landing on Jupiter’s moon Europa. A four-legged spacecraft would descend towards the icy surface, ready to hunt for signs of alien life in a buried ocean.

Landing on Jupiter’s moon in search of alien life won’t be easy.

Source: Why a NASA spacecraft could bounce, crunch or sink on icy Europa

Transparent silver: Tarnish-proof films for flexible displays, touch screens

Transparent silver: Tarnish-proof films for flexible displays, touch screens

University of Michigan researchers have created a transparent silver film that could be used in touchscreens, flexible displays and other advanced applications. L. Jay Guo, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, holds up a piece of the material. Credit: Joseph Xu/Michigan Engineering.

The thinnest, smoothest layer of silver that can survive air exposure has been laid down at the University of Michigan, and it could change the way touchscreens and flat or flexible displays are made.
Source: Transparent silver: Tarnish-proof films for flexible displays, touch screens

LHCb observes an exceptionally large group of particles

A typical LHCb event fully reconstructed. Particles identified as pions, kaon, etc. are shown in different colours. (Image: LHCb collaboration)

The LHCb experiment at CERN is a hotbed of new and outstanding physics results. In just the last few months, the collaboration has announced the measurement of a very rare particle decay and evidence of a new manifestation of matter-antimatter asymmetry, to name just two examples.

The image above shows the data (black dots) of the reconstructed mass distribution resulting from the combination of the Ξc+ and K- particles. The five particle states are the five narrow peaks standing out from the distribution of data. (Image: LHCb collaboration)

 

Science journalism can be evidence-based, compelling — and wrong

A ranking of the best science-news outlets misjudges the relationship between research and reporting.
Source: Science journalism can be evidence-based, compelling — and wrong

Gravitational waves pioneer Ronald Drever dies

Ronald Drever

Scottish physicist Ronald Drever, one of the architects behind the discovery of gravitational waves, has died at the age of 85.

Source: Gravitational waves pioneer Ronald Drever dies – BBC News

The quest to crystallize time


Bizarre forms of matter called time crystals were supposed to be physically impossible. Now they’re not.
Source: The quest to crystallize time

Key experiment at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) gets upgrade

Large Hadron Collider (LHC)

Scientists are upgrading one of the four main experiments on the world’s biggest atom smasher in hopes it will help them discover previously unknown particles or physical properties.

Source: Key experiment at world’s biggest atom smasher gets upgrade

Vera Rubin, who did pioneering work on dark matter, dies

Vera Rubin, a pioneering astronomer who helped find powerful evidence of dark matter, has died, her son said Monday.

Source: Vera Rubin, who did pioneering work on dark matter, dies